Tioga County Sports Report
TIOGA CENTER - Candor jumped out to a big lead early, then held off a furious Tioga comeback effort in the final 10 minutes in a 53-47 win here Tuesday night in IAC South Small School boys basketball action.
A boisterous Candor crowd celebrated the win after the game, and Indians' coach Nate Thomas explained the excitement surrounding the victory.
"Our guys deserve a win like this," he said. "They've put so much work, and so much sweat into this.
"It's about time Candor basketball got a win against a program that's pretty much pounded us the last couple years," said Nate Thomas. "They've had some real good players and they've put it to us, so it feels good to come here and get one."
Daniel Thomas buried four 3-pointers in the first quarter, and five of his Candor teammates added one bucket apiece to give the Indians a 22-12 lead. Seven points, including a pair of 3-pointers, by junior Sam Taylor, and a 3-pointer by senior Pierce Hendershot kept Tioga in the game.
The Candor offense slowed a bit in the second quarter, but its defense limited the Tigers to just three free throws, and Daniel Thomas added his fifth 3-pointer of the half in a 9-3 spurt that extended the lead to 31-15 at the intermission.
"With the way our defense played in the first half, I think that amped up our energy a little bit," said Nate Thomas. "And, it helped that we had some guys hitting shots."
Hendershot scored 10 points in the third quarter, but his teammates added just one as the Tigers trimmed the deficit to 39-26 heading into the final eight minutes, thanks to a 6-2 spurt in the final two minutes.
The Tigers opened the fourth quarter with a 13-4 blitz, capped by a 3-pointer by Lucas Klossner and a steal and lay-up by Hendershot, to cut the gap to four points, at 43-39, with 5:38 remaining in the game.
Daniel Thomas answered with a pair of 3-pointers, sandwich around two Klossner free throws, to give Candor a 49-41 advantage with 3:47 remaining in the contest.
The Tigers had one last run in them as Taylor scored on a driving lay-up and Hendershot canned a pair of free throws to make it 49-45 with 2:08 remaining.
After a shot-clock violation gave the ball back to the Tigers, Klossner connected on a pair of free throws to trim the deficit to 49-47 with 1:31 remaining.
After a defensive stop, Tioga had the ball with a chance to tie or take the lead, but turned the ball over.
Kolden Foster gave the Indians some cushion with a bucket on the offensive glass with 47 seconds remaining.
After another Tioga turnover, Nick Thomas put the game away with a lay-up to provide the final margin.
"Hats off to Tioga," said Nate Thomas. "They have some boys who can score he ball , and score it quick as you saw in the second half.
"We had to come out with defensive intensity," he noted. "We really tried to shut Klossner down, he had 29 in the first game.
"That was our first goal, and we did that in the first half, then (Pierce) Hendershot got hot," he said. "It was a whole different ball game with both of them scoring.
"Tonight, we came out of the gate fast, finally, and we finished the game," added Nate Thomas. "The stuff that happens in the middle - sometimes it's going to be ugly, and sometimes it's going to be pretty. Tonight, we did what we needed to do."
Daniel Thomas led Candor with 25 points, including seven 3-pointers, five rebounds, and one blocked shot, while Caleb Vaow added six points, Foster had five points and seven rebounds, and Brayden Krebs had five points and six boards.
Kevin Cotton had four points, four steals, and one block in the win, while Alex Doucett chipped in with four points, and Nick Thomas, who had just two points, contributed 11 assists, five rebounds, two steals and one blocked shot.
Hendershot led Tioga with 25 points, including a trio of 3-pointers and an 8-for-9 performance from the free-throw line, 11 rebounds, and three steals, while Klossner added 10 points, Taylor chipped in with nine points, and senior Derrick Barto dished out three assists.
Candor, now 3-1, hosts Newark Valley Friday night, while Tioga (1-1) travels to Newfield.
IN PHOTO 1: Candor's Kevin Cotton. ... PHOTOS BY TIM BIRNEY.
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