The Boonville Pirates basketball team knows all about tough losses.
Take the game Tuesday night in their home opener at the Windsor gymnasium against the Fulton Hornets. After leading by four going into the fourth quarter in the first meeting at Fulton only to lose the game by six, the Pirates had yet another heartbreaking loss on Tuesday by taking a six point lead in the fourth quarter only to lose in the final seconds 70-68.
While the loss dropped Boonville to 4-6 overall and 1-3 in the NCMC, head coach Jesse Oswald said this was a tough game to swallow after the final buzzer sounded.
“I felt our start and finish could have been better,” Oswald said. “Between the first and last two minutes, I felt we controlled the game. We could have done a better job at rebounding, as we gave up 16 offensive rebounds. Turnovers also hurt us. We had several things we concentrated on before the game and at halftime, and the main ones were taking care of the ball and rebounding, and we failed to do both. Make no mistake, Fulton is a great team; one of the best teams on our schedule, and we allowed them to force us into some mistakes we don’t normally make. Our conference is incredibly difficult, and we let the top team come in and sneak away with a victory that I felt we had in our hands most of the night. This loss hurts, but everything can be a learning experience. So we look forward to getting better the next two days before we square off with Marshall Friday night at home.”
While playing on the road for the first half of the season, the Pirates were due for a home game. Unfortunately it came in the way of the Hornets, who are now 10-0 overall and 6-0 in the NCMC.
Nonetheless, Boonville gave Fulton everything they wanted and more while playing to a 12-12 tie after one and leading by six at 33-27 at the half.
The third quarter was also tight with both teams scoring 19 points. Boonville also had the only threes in the period with two treys by junior Clayton Gochenour to make it a seven point game at 48-41 with 1:42 left.
Gochenour led all scorers in the game for Boonville with 16 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter. He also had two rebounds and one steal.
Clinging to a six point lead for most of the second half, the Pirates also led 60-54 and 62-56 with 3:57 left in the game. However a 7-0 run by Fulton gave the Hornets a three point lead at 69-66 with 28 seconds left. But even then Boonville had a chance after a basket by freshman Charlie Bronakowski to cut the lead to one at 69-68. Meanwhile, after Fulton 1 of 2 free throws on the other end of the floor to make it a two-point ballgame at 70-68 with 7.3 seconds left, Boonville came down and had a chance but had the ball hit the back of the rim and then get knocked out front as time ran out.
Ryan Beaver finished the game with 13 points, two rebounds, two steals and one assist while Josh Chrisman added 10 points, two steals and two assists, Avery Reardon nine points and three rebounds, Charlie Bronakowski seven points, four rebounds and one assist, Semaj Clark four points, seven assists, one rebound and one steal, Tramell Coleman four points, two steals, one rebound and one assist, Malik Brazil three points and two assists and Kyle Chrisman with two points and one assist.
The Pirates also shot well enough to win in the ballgame while hitting 5 of 8 shots from the three for 63 percent, 25 of 49 from the field for 51 percent and 13 of 20 from the foul line for 65 percent.
For Fulton, Makygh Galbreath had 16 and Tre Vaughn 14.
Fulton also won the JV game against Boonville in another close game 56-53.
The Pirates, dropping to 2-5 overall and 2-1 in the NCMC opened the first half with a 23-19 lead against Fulton. Boonville also outscored Fulton 20-19 in the third to make it 43-38. However in the final period, Fulton stormed back with a 18-10 advantage for the victory.
Boonville JV coach Brock Hill said this loss was really hard to swallow.  “We led this game for the first 25 or 26 minutes,” Hill said.  “We just didn’t execute in the last two minutes when we really needed to.  We got outscored in the fourth quarter by eight points which ended up being the difference.  We fought hard the whole game and just came up short.  I was proud of the effort our team gave.  All we can do now is learn from this game, then put it behind us and prepare for Marshall on Friday.”
Lane West was the leading scorer in the game for Boonville with 16 points. Tayshaun Bledsoe chipped in 12, Nick Ferrari nine, Gabe Lorenz and Tyler Schuster five points each, Brock Nowlin three and Ethan Huntsperger with two.
Tyler Sayler had the high game for Fulton with 13 points.
Pirates drop final game of 2017 against Warrenton, 58-38
Closing out the 2017 season in the MRMC Holiday Shootout wasn’t a thing of beauty for the Boonville Pirates basketball team.
Playing the Warrenton Warriors, a Class 4 team, the Pirates never really seemed to be in the game while trailing at one point by 20 in the second half in a 58-38 loss.
“This was a game I thought would really test where we are at going into the second half of the season, and although we can learn from it, it’s a game I think we want to soon forget,” said Boonville coach Jesse Oswald. “We came out flat, lethargic, and looked as though we were scared at times. Warrenton stepped up their defensive intensity and really pressured us and forced us into some bad shots, and our worst shooting performance of the season. On top of that, we had way too many careless turnovers, often losing the ball just from their on-ball pressure. We had too many guys getting their pockets picked and then easy layups at the other end for Warrenton. Defensively for us, I felt we were getting lost on a lot of screens and giving them too many open looks and then allowing them to get offensive rebounds and put backs for easy scores. We started off the 2nd half with 3 scores and 3 stops and looked like we would make a run, but then we had some letdowns again. I’ve been saying it for a while, but I feel we still have another level or two to go to on defense, but we are playing overly cautious, instead of aggressive. Hopefully we received a taste of what we can play like by going against an aggressive defense and we can try to emulate that in the next few games.”
Warrenton led from start to finish against Boonville by taking a 29-14 lead into the half. The Warriors also outscored the Pirates 29-24 in the final two periods.
As for the scoring, Avery Reardon had 14 points and eight rebounds. Ryan Beaver had 11 points, three assists and two rebounds while Kellen Brownfield added five points, Clayton Gochenour three points, three rebounds and two assists, Charlie Bronakowski three points and one rebound and Josh Chrisman with two points, four rebounds and two assists.
For Warrenton, Brendan Smith had 17 and Caleb Strauss 10.