Braves hold off Tell City for third place

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By Larry Goffinet

TELL CITY—Hurt by Adam Westerman and Robb Clifton earlier in the season, Tell City held them in check Tuesday.

But other Tecumseh players stepped up to hit key shots as the Braves beat the Marksmen 66-56 for third place in the eight-team PSC Holiday Classic boys basketball tourney Tuesday.

Westerman hit 7 of 8 from the field in the regular-season meeting against the Marksmen, including 5 of 6 from three-point range. And Clifton came off the bench to hit four key field goals in that game.

Tuesday the Marksmen allowed Westerman to take only five shots and held Clifton without a field goal.

But center Rex Nuhring, held to five points in the previous meeting, scored 15 Tuesday, including two key three-pointers.

“We talked about having to know where Westerman was and not let him go off,” said Tell City Coach John Hayes. “Then Nuhring hit those two threes.”

One came two seconds before the halftime buzzer to give the Braves a four-point lead after Tell City had cut it to one on consecutive three-pointers by Jordan Rhodes and Andy Chinn.

The Marksmen regained the lead four times in the fourth quarter, the last coming when Corey Young hit two free throws to put them up 50-48 with 3:42 left.

Nuhring answered with a three-pointer out front, though, to put the Braves ahead for good.

That started a 12-0 Tecumseh run that included four points by Jacob Duncan, with two of them coming on a rebound of his own missed free throw.

“There’s no question we didn’t box out,” Hayes said of that play. But he questioned whether Duncan crossed the free-throw line before the ball hit the rim.

Tecumseh won the rebounding battle 26-20 but that was an improvement for the Marksmen over their previous two games.

Jamal Noland grabbed seven rebounds for them and Jason Hackbarth added five.

Another positive sign for the Marksmen was Chinn’s breaking out of his shooting slump. He scored a game-high 27 points on 10 of 18 field-goal shooting, including 5 of 10 from three-point range.

“That’s not bad, and I thought we did a nice job of finding him,” said Hayes.

Rhodes added 12 points for the Marksmen. Young had four assists.

Kreig Oxley led 6-3 Tecumseh with 26 points and 10 rebounds.

Tell City, 4-5, will visit Mount Vernon Jan. 9 at 7:30 p.m.