Grinch makes post Christmas visit, Cardinal Stritch 51 Tinora 48

PAULDING – One would have thought that the Grinch would have gone back to his cave atop Whoville. Unfortunately, he had one more forgotten gift to deliver, it was addressed to the Tinora Rams who were stationed at Paulding High School.

In the newly named State Bank Holiday Classic, formerly the Grube Holiday Classic, four teams had their site set on the holiday tournament trophy, Tinora, Cardinal Stritch, Wauseon, and the hosts, the Paulding Panthers.

In the opener, the Tinora Rams were the home team against the Cardinal Stritch Cardinals, making the trip in from Toledo (Oregon). The Cardinals came in with a 5-2 record, the Rams with their deceiving, but 2-6 record.

Tinora, again being on the short end of the height battle, saw the Cardinals run out to a 16-8 lead after the first quarter.

The second quarter saw Cardinal Stritch increase their lead by as many as nine, 19-10 with just over four minutes to go prior to the half. Tinora’s Gavin Eckert hit a three followed by a barrage of points by Nolan Schafer, including a bucket at the buzzer that tied the game at the half, 21-21.

Tinora outscored Cardinal Stritch 11-2 to end the half, the Rams senior Schafer had eight, Eric Bohn who battled again on the defensive end, also chipping in six at the half. The Cardinals were led by Christian Burton, Burton also bucked eight first half points.

The third quarter again saw the Rams battle the height disadvantage to grab their first lead of the contest, a 26-25 led on a Luke Harris three pointer with just over six minutes remaining in the quarter. The Cardinals would grab the lead back at 31-30 with 90 seconds remaining in the third. The Rams of Tinora would retake the lead on a back to back three’s by Schafer and Luke Harris to grab a 37-31 lead after the third stanza.

As that record your grandparents owned that would always get stuck in the same spot, the Rams again entered the final quarter with the lead, or a chance to win the game.

A Schafer jumper in the lane started the quarter, the Rams saw their biggest lead of the game, 39-31. As the Cardinals head coach Sed Harris order more intensity on the defensive side, his Cardinals obliged.

With what seemed like seconds to Ram fans, but was 2 minutes in game minutes, the Cardinals, courtesy of several Tinora turnovers, and an offensive foul, cut the Rams lead to just 40-39.
Tinora bounced back, grabbing a 45-41 lead with 3:20 remaining, courtesy of a tip in play by Nolan Schafer.

Over the next two minutes, the Rams still held a 45-43 advantage. With 1:18 remaining, the Cardinals tied the game at 45-45 on a Christian Burton bank shot from 8 feet.

After a Rams miss, the Cardinals Kam Hughes hit a put back off a Burton miss, and was fouled, converting the three point play, giving Cardinal Stritch the lead, 48-45 with just over one minute remaining in the fourth.

Another Tinora turnover gave the ball back to the Cardinals with 30 seconds remaining, after a Stritch miss, the Rams Gavin Eckert drained a three from the right wing, cutting the lead to 49-45 with 13 seconds remaining.
A breakaway layup by the Cardinals Christian Burton gave Stritch a 51-48 advantage with 10 seconds remaining.
The Rams had a chance to tie, but a three pointer at the buzzer was just off, giving the Cardinal Stritch Cardinals a 51-48 win in the State Bank Holiday Classic.

The loss dropped the Rams to 2-7, Tinora will play Paulding in the consolidation game at 6 pm Tuesday evening from Paulding High School.

Cardinal Stritch improves to 6-2 and will take on Wauseon in the championship game Tuesday at 8 pm.

Game two saw Wauseon defeat Paulding, 60-40.

Tinora scoring:
Schafer 21
Harris 12
Eckert 8
Bohn 7

Cardinal Stritch scoring:
Burton 20
Hughes 11
Hicks 6
Carter 6
Whitehead 4
Youst 3
Bohnsack 2

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