The “spirit” battle in the student sections between the Norwalk High School “Nerds” and the “Blackout” for Edison High School was evenly contested.
The basketball game on the floor between the Truckers and Chargers was not.
In the Northern Ohio League-Sandusky Bay Conference boys’ basketball showdown Saturday night between the Truckers and Chargers, entering the game each team had only one league loss and just four losses combined.
But Norwalk controlled virtually the whole game and won 51-34.
The Truckers (8-3 overall) jumped out to a sizable 14-15 first-quarter lead.
Edison committed five turnovers in the first quarter—only three the rest of the game.
“I thought we were a little deeper than them,” Norwalk coach Steve Gray said. “We were hoping we could put pressure on them for 32 minutes and wear them down a little bit.”
The Truckers combined a solid defensive performance throughout the game, numerous points in the paint on offense and a 22-point scoring effort by Jacob Cashen to stifle the Chargers. Jake Fetherolf added 12 points for Norwalk.
“We just made the extra pass. We were very unselfish tonight,” Gray said. “Thankfully, Cashen stepped up for us, but overall it was a great team effort.”
After the nine-point margin to end the first, Norwalk pushed its lead to 27-14 at halftime.
Edison closed the gap to nine eventually in the third, but the Truckers scored a quick four points to end the quarter with a 38-23 lead.
Norwalk outscored Edison 13-11 in the fourth to earn the 17-point win.
The Truckers, after taking 16-5 lead to begin the second quarter, only let their lead slip under double digits once the rest of the game.
Edison (9-2) suffers its first non-league loss.
The Truckers shot 20-of-50 from the floor, went 9-of-16 from the free throw line and had eight turnovers. Norwalk outrebounded Edison, 34-20.
Edison went 12-of-41 from the field and shot 8-of-14 on free throws. Ryan Reber scored 12 points to lead Edison.
“Credit Norwalk, Edison coach Chris Ceccoli said. “They were aggressive tonight and they were physical. They really dictated what was happening out there.
“Sometimes you have to tip your cap to your opponent. They have a nice young team,” the coach added.
The Truckers swept the night with a 55-29 win in the reserve game.
Cody Gregory led Norwalk (11-0) with 16 points, while Michael Finch put in 14.
Both teams return to league play Friday.
Norwalk visits Bellevue, while Edison hosts Oak Harbor.
Grant 0-1-1, Tomson 2-0-5, Blodgett 1-0-2, Yost 3-0-7, Suhanick 3-1-7, Reber 3-6-12. Totals: 12-8-34.
Hallock 0-1-1, Cook 3-3-9, Thomas 3-0-7, Fetherolf 5-2-12, J. Cashen 9-3-22. Totals: 20-9-51.
Score by quarter
Edison 5 9 9 11 — 34
Norwalk 14 13 11 13 — 51
Church 0-1-1, Bixler 3-0-8, Gerbracht 3-0-7, Ortman 1-0-2, Shabel 1-0-2, Bridges 0-3-3, Maschari 1-0-2, Frankboner 2-0-4. Totals: 11-4-29.
Finch 6-2-14, Hull 4-1-9, Foos 3-2-8, Gregory 7-2-16, McGuckin 1-0-2, Grodi 1-0-2, K. Cashen 2-0-4. Totals: 24-7-55.
Score by quarter
Edison 7 11 7 7 — 29
Norwalk 12 21 16 6 — 55