The Hillsboro Indians varsity basketball team opened their season on Thursday night with a 60-54 win against the visiting Eastern Warriors.
The Indians were led by a balanced offensive effort and a tenacious defensive effort that limited the Warriors for much of the night.
Hillsboro had four players in double figures led by junior Ethan Watson who totaled 14 points on the night including two triples.
Josh Keets, Phillip MyCroft and Jakwon Clark each had at least 11 points in the game.
The Indians jumped out to an early lead on the Eastern boys and led 14-8 after one quarter.
Hillsboro kept the pressure on to start the second quarter as they opened with a 6-0 run to extend their lead to 12 at 20-8 with just under six minutes to play in the first half.
The visiting Warriors would not go away quietly as they stormed back with a 10-2 run to close out the half and cut the lead to 4 at 22-18 heading into halftime.
Hillsboro came out in the second half firing on all cylinders offensively as they put up 22 points in the third quarter to match their output for the entire first half.
The Warriors were also hot in the third quarter putting up 17 as neither defense was able to do much to stop the other team.
The Indians were able to put the game away at the line in the fourth quarter as they netted 10 of 14 free throws en route to scoring 16 points in the deciding frame.
The Warriors put up 19 in the final quarter but were enable to put consecutive plays together to make the run they needed to change the outcome.
Hillsboro head coach Bruce Miles was impressed with Clark, a freshman, in his first varsity game.
“The guy has all the talent in the world. I did not know what to expect. I knew he was going to go out there and play hard and be athletic. He made a lot of shots, that was a bonus. He brings energy and athleticism, anything he gives us offensively is a real nice thing for our coaching staff to see going forward,” said Miles.
The Indians will be back in action on Saturday at 9 p.m. when they take on the McClain Tigers as part of the Ohio Valley Hoops Classic at Southern State Community College.
Hillsboro: Swayne 1-4/6-6; Ward 1-2/4-4; Watson 2(2)-4/6-14; Clark 4(1)-0/1-11; Keets 5-3/4-13, MyCroft 5-2/6-12
Eastern: Martin 1-1/2-3; Stivers 1-2; Hamilton 2(1)-3/4-10; Vaughn 4-2/2-10; Boone 2/2-2; Burn 3(1)-4/6-13; Ruckell 2(2)-10; Purdy 2-4
Reach Ryan Applegate at 937-402-2572, or on Twitter @RCApplegate89.