Wauseon struggled to find a rhythm offensively in the first half and had to deal with a stingy Edgerton team which finished with three players in double figures, but in the end the Indians would prevail for a 54-46 win in non-league boys basketball Friday.
It was Wauseon’s home opener as they are now 3-0 on the young season after a 67-47 road win at Napoleon Saturday.
“Matt Ripke is an outstanding basketball coach. So defensively they (Edgerton) are gonna be in position all the time. And I thought the first half at times we rushed things, and just didn’t take advantage of maybe some athleticism that we had (over Edgerton). I thought the second half we did a better job spacing the floor,” said Wauseon coach Chad Burt of the game and how his team overcame their early struggles.
The visiting Bulldogs led for a portion of the first half, then took the lead on three separate occasions in the third period. The latter of those was a 30-29 advantage after Arryn Pahl’s bucket at roughly the four minute mark.
However, the Indians proceeded to go on a 8-0 run – mostly from the foul line – to seize back control. Noah Tester hit a pair from the charity stripe, his younger brother Jonas Tester followed with two, then Sean Brock scored inside and added two more free throws for a 37-30 Wauseon lead.
They would eventually bump that margin to 43-33 by the end of the third.
That run continued into the fourth as Jonas Tester hit a floater 1:05 in, Connar Penrod scored on an inbounds play 40 seconds later, and Noah Tester’s drive and score pushed the Indian lead to 16 with 5:32 to play.
Wauseon was limited to just five points the rest of the way, but the deficit was too steep for the Dogs to overcome.
“They got in foul trouble. That was a big turning point in the game,” said Burt on how his team was able to pull away. “We attacked them a little bit. Sean Brock got a couple easy buckets at the rim. Connar got a couple easy buckets at the rim. I thought Noah Tester attacked the rim real well. It was a good complete game.”
Edgerton’s Jaron Cape scored 6 of his 10 points in the opening quarter, with his drive to the hoop with 42 seconds left pulling them within 11-10 after one.
Noah Tester then stole the show for the Indians in the early minutes of quarter two.
His three-pointer and open basket inside gave Wauseon a six-point edge, forcing Edgerton to call timeout. They then pushed the lead to 20-12 on hoops from Tyson Britsch and Penrod around a Bulldog putback basket by Noah Landel.
The Indians were outscored 6-2 over the final 4:50 as the Dogs pulled within four at the break.
Cape hit a pair at the line, and after a steal and score by Brock, Logan Showalter responded with two steal and scores for the Dogs, making it 22-18 at the half.
Showalter scored 17 to lead the Bulldog attack. Colin Gary also finished with 10 for Edgerton (2-2).
Noah Tester had 17 points and Jonas Tester 11 for Wauseon. Brock had 12 points, and was also instrumental on the defensive end according to coach Burt.
“The thing that goes unnoticed to the average spectator, we did a lot more switching defensively tonight than a lot of nights to be honest with you,” he said. “And Sean is kind of the quarterback of the defense. Calling out a lot of switches. He’s a senior, he’s got some years under his belt. That’s what you expect out of your seniors.”
The Indians next travel to Sylvania Southview (2-0) Tuesday.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010