Oakville boys' basketball 67-55 win over Lutheran South third in a row
Throughout the season, Kenny Ash has been preaching to his troops to be intense and consistent for four quarters and the wins will come.
The head coach of the boys' basketball team at Oakville Senior High School is proving to be correct after his Tigers won their third game in a row Friday evening in a 67-55 win at home over Lutheran South.
"We've got a nice little winning streak going on," Ash told the Call. "Last Friday night was the first game where we played four quarters with some intensity."
The Tigers (8-5, 2-2 Suburban South) jumped all over the Lancers as they held a 37-25 advantage at the half and a 54-35 lead after the third quarter of play.
Yet the Tigers head coach believes that Oakville's success was not only due to the team's consistent play, but also its seniors stepping up into a leadership role.
"We've got a lot of seniors on this team and the team leadership is a lot better than it was in the beginning of the season," Ash said. "They decided to start getting things done."
Junior Drew Martin led the Tigers with a stout effort both offensively and defensively with 27 points, 18 rebounds, four steals, one assist and two blocked shots. The starting center obviously had a game that would make any coach grin from ear to ear.
"That's a game of many people's career," the Oakville coach said. "He was really hustling on the defensive end and wanting the ball on the offensive end."
Junior guard Matt McKiernan filled in the starting guard position for senior Todd Kulage, who has been out the past several games because of an ankle sprain.
McKiernan normally comes off the bench for the Tigers, but his 18-point outburst with two rebounds, one blocked shot, one steal and one assist would make anyone believe that he's a starter.
"Matt really stepped up and did a great job," Ash said. "He could really be a starter, but we like him coming off the bench when Kulage is healthy."
Oakville's third player to score in double figures was senior forward Ryan Lynch with 11 points, two rebounds, two blocked shots and one assist.
"Ryan's our defensive specialist," Ash said.
He held Uthoff to only 16 points when he's averaging nearly 19 a game," the coach said. "He really did a bang-up job on him."
The Tigers are on the road this week as they travel to Parkway North this Thursday for a Suburban South Conference showdown with the Vikings.
An Oakville win could solidify the Tigers third place showing in the conference standings.
"We're standing at 2-2 in the conference and every one of these conference games are important," Ash said. "Right now we've got to keep playing four quarters with some intensity and fire."
Oakville's game against Parkway North is slated for a 7 p.m. start.