For The Tribune
Despite a strong start, the Medora boys basketball team struggled in the third quarter against Bloomington Lighthouse on Friday.
The Hornets dropped their home game 58-49 against the Lions.
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The Hornets started out strong as they hopped to an early lead in the first quarter. The Hornets used good defense and sharp shooting to gain a 13-8 lead at the end of the quarter.
Medora senior Jalen Beesley led the Hornets in the first quarter, scoring nine of his 15 points in the opening eight minutes.
Senior Chase Booker and junior Brandon Moore both added a basket to give the Hornets 13 points in the first.
The Hornets appeared to start on the fast track to building a big lead as they went up 24-12 at one point in the second quarter.
The Lions had other plans as they went on a 9-0 run to bring the score 24-21 in favor of the Hornets to end the first half.
The third quarter started with trouble for the Hornets, as the Lions’ Sam Culbertson stole the ball and made a quick layup to start a 12-2 run to start the half.
Culbertson had 13 points in the game.
The Hornets finally scored at the 2:31 mark in the third on a short jump shot from senior Mike Jones.
The third quarter ended with the Hornets battling back, but could not keep up with the 18 points the Lions scored in the quarter.
The Hornets managed a team-best 18 points in the fourth quarter.
The Lions answered with great defense and quick shots off turnovers to outscore the Hornets with 19 points.
At one point it seemed as though the Hornets may mount a comeback as they had possession of the ball and only down 44-36 with four minutes to go, but the Lions’ Thomas Sinclair stole the ball on a pass to take the ball away. That’s when the Lions took control of the game and ended it with a 58-49 victory.
Medora coach Michael Leitzman said his team has played well the last couple of games in the second quarter but fail to have the mental toughness to compete once a team catches back up with them.
“The last couple games we have played our best basketball in the second quarter,” he said. “If we could take the first half of these last few games and combine them, we’d play great basketball, but there’s still that stretch in the game where we will go six or eight minutes where we won’t play our basketball, and we just make mental errors and not respond well at times.”
Leitzman said the team gets too discouraged when another team makes a run on them. He added that the team needs to find a way to battle through those times because it is inevitable.
“Basketball is a game of runs,” he said. “I preach that to these kids, but we just have to get over the hump.”