KYLE SHANER/Advocate photo
Mississinawa Valley’s Dane Blumenstock shoots a basket over the Covington defense during a boys basketball game Friday night in Covington.
COVINGTON – Not much went right for the Mississinawa Valley boys basketball team Friday night as it lost 65-38 to Covington in Cross County Conference action.
The Blackhawks weren’t running their offense like they should all night, coach Rodney Saintignon said.
“We just didn’t do anything right,” Saintignon said. “I got to credit Covington’s defense. You know once again, they played a good defensive game. We’ve been running into that a lot, but we just didn’t know what to do.”
The high point of the game for Mississinawa Valley came in the opening minutes of the first quarter. Dane Blumenstock drove to the basket for two points, and Carson Stump sank a 3-pointer to give the Blackhawks a 5-0 lead.
But that was the only lead of the night for Mississinawa Valley as Covington went on an 11-0 run to take a lead it held for the rest of the night.
Brandon Byers stopped Mississinawa Valley’s scoring drought with a pair of free throws, and Stump also added two free throws before the first quarter ended, but the Hawks founds themselves trailing 15-9.
Blumenstock scored the first points of the second quarter to cut the deficit to four points, but then Covington went on a 13-0 run.
Blumenstock stopped the Buccaneer run with a basket to make it 28-13, but Covington proceeded to score 13 of the final 15 points in the half – with Cesar Delgado accounting for Mississinawa Valley’s two – to give the Buccaneers a 41-15 halftime lead.
“You can’t come out and score five points and then just stop playing,” Saintignon said. “Covington stepped up their defense, but we still just didn’t do things right offensively all night long. We didn’t shoot well. We didn’t run through our offense. This is what’s gonna happen when you do stuff like that.”
Mississinawa Valley was able to outscore Covington 12-11 in the third quarter with Blumenstock, Cayden Cox, Stump and Jacob Breymier all contributing offensively, but the Hawks still trailed 52-27.
With the game firmly in hand, Covington outscored Mississinawa Valley 13-11 in the fourth quarter to seal the 65-38 victory as Delgado, Blumenstock, Stump and Byers each scored for the Blackhawks in the final period.
Blumenstock led Mississinawa Valley with 13 points in the game. Also for the Hawks, Stump scored eight, Byers scored six, Breymier scored four, Delgado scored four, and Cox scored three.
The Blackhawks have been hit by injury and illness as they have been without key seniors Cale Cox and Bryson Pollic, Saintignon said, but they have to start improving with the Ohio High School Athletic Association tournament quickly approaching.
“I thought there for awhile that we were coming along and playing hard,” Saintignon said. “But there’s good teams in the sectional, in our sectional tournament, and we can’t play like this and expect to win a game in that tournament.”