Bishop Donahue 55
Magnolia Blue Eagle standout Preston Boswell drained a game-high 38 points in a 61-55 win over Bishop Donahue Feb. 17, thus redeeming an 89-92 loss to the Bishops two weeks earlier.
Magnolia's Mitch Winters scored the game's first points, but Donahue would can the next two buckets before Zach Willhoite tied it at 4-4 with a basket inside. The Bishops went on a 7-2 run to take the lead, but Boswell put MHS ahead 11-9 with a buzzer beater to end the first period.
Donahue would score the second period's first seven markers that forced the Eagles into a time out. After the break, the Eagles would go on an 8-0 run to pull to within one, midway through the second stanza.
Donahue answered with two straight buckets before Boswell cashed in on four straight charity tosses to forge ahead by one, 21-20, late in period two. Boswell scored another bucket off a nice assist by Winters and Donahue sank a free throw for the final points of the opening half that had Magnolia in the lead 23-21.
To open the second half, Bishop Donahue scored a deuce, but the Eagles would go on a 7-0 run, highlighted by a Boswell threeball, to forge ahead 30-23. Donahue would sink the last four points of the period to pull to within a free throw from tying the game up at 37.
Blue Eagle Derrick Blain connected on a threeball to start the final period of play. But, after a pair of Bishop Donahue freebies, the Eagles' Kyle Ritz made a charity toss of his own for a Magnolia 41-38 lead early in the fourth.
Boswell would get a steal and lay-in after Donahue missed a free throw and went on to net the next 10 points to put the game on ice for the Blue.
"We have grown to expect that kind of performance from Preston," said Magnolia Head Coach Dave Tallman. "All the hard work he and his dad did in the off season really has paid off. He just took the game over and we really needed it."
Boswell was the only double digit scorer for the Eagles with 38 points, while hauling in a dozen rebounds from his point guard spot. Winters posted nine markers, while Willhoite netted two baskets. Ritz sank three charity tosses, while Blain and Eric Smith both sank a triple and Chase Miller hit a deuce.
Paden City 45
Boswell netted 32 points to lead Magnolia to a 63-45 revenge matchup with Paden City Feb. 21 in front of another standing room crowd in Bob Burton Gymnasium.
Magnolia would race out to an 8-1 lead, but the never-say-die Paden City squad would narrow the gap to 15-14 after the first eight minutes, thanks, in part, to eight Luke Cooper points.
The 'Cats were down only 20-19 before the Blue Eagles would go on an 11-0 spree to extend their lead to 31-19 with 1:45 left in period two. However, Paden City's top scorer, Kennedy Cain, sank 2-3 freebies after being fouled on a shot from beyond the arch. The 'Cats climbed a bit closer when Cooper tickled the twine from long distance. But, Boswell netted a rebound putback at the buzzer to give the visitors a 33-24 advantage at intermission.
Heasley scored on a short jumper to open the third period. But Cain topped that with a threeball and Willhoite sank another deuce before Cain sank two more at the charity stripe.
Chase Miller netted a jumper and Boswell sank two more baskets to push Magnolia's advantage to 43-29. Cain and Hayden Hizer each tickled the twine for deuces, while Ritz netted two baskets for Magnolia. Heasley sank the period's last points on a free throw for Paden City.
Boswell scored four goals and a free throw to open the fourth, while Cain netted two baskets before fouling out of the game with 2:53 left in regulation.
Magnolia's Tyler Anderson came off the bench to score five points down the stretch, while teammate Logan Massey tickled the twine from the Magnolia sidelines to end the game.
After Boswell's game-high 32 points, Willhoite netted 12 points for the Blue, while Anderson netted five points. In addition, Ritz netted four, while Blain and Smith sank a bonus bomb each. Miller and Massey ended the Blue Eagle scoring with each scoring a deuce.
Cain netted a team-high 15 points for the Wildcats, while Cooper posted 14 markers, including three baskets from beyond the arch. Craig Allen followed with four points, while Heasley was held to three points.
Paden City shot 70 percent in the win over Magnolia in their first meeting, while shooting only 34 percent in the Feb. 21 meeting.
Magnolia junior sharp-shooter Spencer Campbell was missing from the line-up for disciplinary reasons, as he was in the match-up with Bishop Donahue.
The Magnolia Blue Eagles broke open a close game late in the second half to dispose of the pesky Buffalo Bisons 77-69 Feb. 19 in the Charleston Civic Center.
The Eagles fell behind 24-20 after one period of play, but tied it up at the break at 38 all. As the Blue Eagles gained momentum, they outscored the Bisons 18-14 in the third frame.
After a Buffalo turnover in the final period of play, the Eagles' Mitch Winters dished off to Zach Willhoite for a deuce and the first points of the period.
Following another Buffalo turnover, Preston Boswell added a deuce. A third Buffalo miscue sent Winters to the foul line, where he made good on the second of two tosses to give Magnolia a 61-52 lead.
Buffalo would then sink a shot from the corner to get back in the game. However, the Eagles' Chase Miller tallied a 15-foot jumper, and Spencer Campbell dialed in from long distance to push the Big Blue lead up to 66-54 and Magnolia's largest lead of the game.
After both teams made a free throw, Buffalo would call a time out. After the short break, Boswell nailed the back end of a charity toss in between four Bison free throws with four minutes remaining in the contest.
Winters upped the ante with a put back, but the Bisons followed with a deuce. Boswell would miss two straight free throws before Campbell brought one home on another putback.
Buffalo would make the front end of two free throws and quickly call a time out with two minutes remaining in regulation. After a Magnolia miscue, Buffalo would cash in on two more free throws to close the gap to 72-64.
Willhoite, Winters, and Boswell split five straight Magnolia points to push the lead up to 77-64 before Buffalo scored the game's last five points.
Boswell led all scorers with 24 markers that included three baskets from beyond the arc. Campbell stuffed the stat sheet with 17 points, including five trifectas. Willhoite followed with 11 markers, while Winters posted 11 points. Kyle Ritz scored five markers, while Miller and Eric Smith both netted a two-pointer.
In their last game before sectional play begins, the Eagles will host Madonna Feb. 26 with the junior varsity tip scheduled for 6 p.m
Boswell scored 12 of the team's final 19 points to help break open a close game and helped finish a 63-49 victory over the Cameron Dragons Monday evening.
The Eagles flew ahead 17-14 in the opening stanza, as Boswell and Willhoite each netted eight markers to give Magnolia the edge. However, the Dragons tied the game at the break, 27-27.
The Eagles started to pull away in the third frame, and would finish slaying the Dragons down the stretch.
Willhoite followed Boswell's 31 points with 17 markers, while Spencer Campbell returned to the lineup and scored eight points. Winters dropped in four points, while Ritz netted a deuce and Anderson made good on a free throw.
Magnolia will host the Hundred Hornets Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Region I, Section I Class-A Sectionals with the winner playing Bishop Donahue Tuesday, March 3, at John Marshall Field House also at 7 p.m.