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Perkins holds on as Oak Harbor rally falls short

Michael Truax • May 12, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Oak Harbor brought itself back from a 17-point deficit against Perkins, pulling within one possession with two minutes to play, but in the end the Rockets' rally ran out of fuel.

Perkins' 54-46 win means the Pirates find themselves tied with Edison atop the Sandusky Bay Conference midway through the season.

Oak Harbor, at the opposite end, is still without a conference win.

"At the end, we still had a chance," Oak Harbor coach Rob Collier said. "In those last two minutes, we just couldn't find the bottom of the bucket.

"We had a line tonight that was playing well together, and I didn't substitute to keep them fresh. But it's not like our shots were falling short of the basket. I think it was just bad luck at the end."

Perkins' Zak Dees hit a free throw early in the fourth quarter to give the Pirates a commanding 49-33 lead. For the next five minutes, however, it was all Oak Harbor as the Rockets went out on a 12-0 run, pulling within four points, 49-45, with more than three minutes to play. At 1:52, Oak Harbor's D.J. Everett split a pair of free throws to make it a one-possession game, 49-46.

Perkins' Nic Williams exploited a defensive breakdown by Oak Harbor with less than two minutes to go. He found himself and teammate Caleb Balduff under the Oak Harbor basket with only one Rocket defender in the area. Williams drew the defender towards himself and found Balduff for the easy basket, giving Perkins a little more breathing room, 51-46. Oak Harbor came up dry on their next few trips down the floor, and Perkins' Tony Haerr and Williams sealed the game at the line.

Williams scored eight points for Perkins in the first quarter as the Pirates took a 22-13 lead. Perkins started the second quarter on a 10-2 run on the strength of eight points from Dees. Leading 32-15, the Pirates let up and let Oak Harbor back into the game with a 10-2 run of their own, pulling within nine points at the half, 34-25.

"We started strong (in the first quarter) and played well at both ends," Perkins coach Scott McVeigh said. "Then, honestly, they outplayed us for three quarters."

Perkins widened the gap in the third quarter, outscoring Oak Harbor 13-8, despite a dismal 1 of 7 performance at the line.

"You have those nights," McVeigh said. "We're not going to shoot well every night. But defense needs to be our staple every night."

Oak Harbor's Everett led the Rockets with 17 points, followed by Andrew Karsten with 11.

Dees scored 13 points for Perkins, 12 in the first half, while Brandon Smith and Williams added 10 points apiece.

Oak Harbor travels to Tiffin Columbian on Tuesday night.

"We're struggling to score at times and we're struggling to win, but at least we're giving ourselves a chance to win," Collier said.

Perkins has a break until Saturday, when they'll host St. Mary Central Catholic. Perkins hopes to reintegrate Michael Ebert into the lineup after he missed two games for a football scouting combine.

OAK HARBOR (1-8, 0-7 SBC)

Priesman 2-0--5; Young 3-0--8; Karsten 4-1--11; Everett 6-5--17; Scott 1-1--3; Wiegand 1-0--2; TOTALS 17-7--46

PERKINS (9-1, 6-1 SBC)

Smith 4-2--10; Balduff 3-0--6; Williams 3-2--10; Haerr 4-1--9; Dees 5-2--13; Genter 3-0--6; TOTALS 22-7--54

Oak Harbor 13 12 8 13 -- 46

Perkins 22 12 13 7 -- 54

3-pt FG: Oak Harbor 5 (Priesman, Young 2, Karsten 2); Perkins 3 (Williams 2, Dees)

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