Thunderbirds storm past Carey
LIMA – C.J. Kin had answered only a few questions in his postgame intervew.
The Carey coach looked at the reporters.
They looked back at him.
There just wasn’t much to say.
Lima Central Catholic dominated the offensive glass – and rebounding in general – and never gave the Blue Devils much of a chance. The Thunderbirds, who finished the season ranked fourth in Division III, scored the game’s first 17 points, led 21-2 after the first quarter, and dominated the Blue Devils, 66-33 in the Division III?district semifinal in?Lima.
LCC (22-2) recorded five offensive rebounds in the game’s first 42 seconds. Sixteen of their 22 rebounds in the first quarter were offensive.
So, despite missing their first 10 shots from the floor, the Thunderbirds had control from the beginning.
“The athleticism and the quickness [of Lima Central Catholic], it’s not something we see a lot of,” Kin said. “I thought, throughout the year – we’re pretty athletic as a team, too -we haven’t seen a lot of teams more athletic than we are, but they’re by far more athletic and faster, and we had a hard time handling their speed and just their physicalness inside.”
The leader for LCC Thursday night was Darius West. The six-foot junior wing had 13 points, tying him with teammate Jake Williams for the team lead.
But West was tremendous on the boards, collecting 14. Ten of those were offensive rebounds.
“A guy like Darius West, his athleticism really stuck out tonight, in terms of keeping balls alive and getting other people involved, too,” LCC coach Frank Kill said.
The Thunderbirds crashed the offensive glass for 28 boards. They had 53 total, 22 more than Carey.
Carey shot just 1 of 13 in the first quarter, and finished just 12 of 56 from the floor.
“I thought we got a little shell shocked early,” Kin said.
For Kill, his team simply played the way it needed to to keep going.
“I’ve always said if you want to go anywhere in the tournament, you’ve got to play defense and you’ve got to rebound,” he said. “When you rebound the basketball the way that we did, and get out in transition…I thought a lot of things happened for us early that allowed us to get the early lead.”
Carey trailed 40-11 at halftime and 59-19 heading to the fourth quarter.
Bryan Powers led Carey (17-8) with 13 points, while Zach Boes had seven points and a team-best nine boards.
Lima Central Catholic returns here Saturday to play Spencerville, which upset No. 2 Liberty-Benton, 53-51 in overtime of the first game.