For the second time this year, the Oran Eagles boys basketball team and the Advance Hornets have matched up in a tournament.
The first was in the Oran Invitational on December 1st and it was for the first place trophy. In that game, Advance took a lead into halftime but heading into the fourth the game was tied. As you may remember, the Eagles claimed a 66-60 and an O.I.T. championship, breaking a 45-year drought.
Last night, the two teams were playing in the 5th-place game. The winner would get a trophy, the loser would go home empty-handed.
At the intermission last night, Oran led by 14 points (32-18) but saw the Hornets roar back and once again it was a tie game heading into the final eight minutes. Advance took a three-point lead early in the fourth but their shots stopped falling and the Eagles controlled the boards. With just under two minutes remaining, Oran was up 62-48. The Eagles held on for a 64-56 win and fifth-place finish in the 73rd annual SEMissourian Christmas tournament.
Coach Joe Shoemaker said, "I thought our half-court defense is improving which is something we talked about. We also knew that they would start to hit some shots and make a run and we would have to be able to answer it. I think we improved during this tournament but we have to continue that improvement to reach our end goal."
Layne Johnson finished with a game-high 20 points, 10 of which came in the decisive final period. He hit four treys and was four of five at the free throw stripe. He was named to the All-Tournament team. He was second in overall scoring in the event with a total of 95.
Jacob Shoemaker finished with 18. he hit one three-pointer and was three of four from the line. Todd Priggel had 14, with six of his points coming from beyond the arc.
Drew Reischman had eight points and Cole Priggel rounded out the scoring with four.
Oran hit seven of nine from the free throw line for 78%.
The Eagles improved to 8-2. They will travel to Bernie to take on the Mules on Tuesday. Game time is 6 pm.
For complete tournament coverage click HERE.