You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Bellefontaine upsets top-seeded Urbana

Urbana fought and fought Tuesday night to get even with Bellefontaine. And just when it looked as if hope was gone, Dillon Knueven banked in a 3-pointer with seven seconds left.

Down two, the Hillclimbers fouled Bellefontaine’s Tristin Tillman before the ball was inbounded. Tillman made the first but missed the second. But Urbana never got a chance to shoot for the tie because Chieftains point guard AJ Gorham stole the outlet pass and was fouled.

Two free throws later fourth-seeded Bellefontaine had knocked off top-seeded Urbana 45-40 in a Division II sectional semifinal at Springfield High School.

“I never felt like we were out of it,” Urbana coach Jeremy Dixon said. “I always thought we’re going to have a run, we’re going to have a run. Unfortunately it just came a little bit too late.”

Bellefontaine meets Central Buckeye Conference rival Tippecanoe, the No. 2 seed, at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Springfield High in the sectional final.

Urbana (18-6) never led and was never tied for the lead as Bellefontaine (15-8) took a 10-4 lead after one quarter. The Hillclimbers played catch-up, and 42-40 was as close as they got on Knueven’s late 3-pointer.

“It seemed like every time we had a chance to cut the lead, we’d miss an easy basket, a loose ball would tip their way or they’d get a breakout,” Dixon said.

The Chieftains, who had their own struggles scoring at times against the stingiest defense in the CBC, led by nine early in the fourth and by eight three more times, the last at 38-30 with 2:51 left before Urbana’s final push.

“They’re a champion,” Bellefontaine coach Henry Stolly said. “They’re going to keep battling to the very end like a champion does.”

Dixon, however, pointed to his team’s four-point first quarter. The Chieftains opened with a 2-3 zone, which did not surprise Urbana. But if high schools played with a shot clock, there would have been a lot of bad, late-in-the-clock shots in the first quarter. The Hillclimbers were reduced to perimeter passers.

“You can’t have a first quarter like we did and expect to beat a good team,” Dixon said. “We were very unaggressive with the zone early on. And when we did get opportunities we just didn’t finish them.”

The Chieftains, who lost to Urbana 45-41 a month ago, changed defenses often during the final three quarters, alternating between zone and man and employing different half-court traps and full-court zone pressure.

“We tried to keep them out of an offensive flow by changing defenses and putting a little pressure on their guards and make them feel a little uncomfortable,” Stolly said.

Urbana won its third straight CBC Mad River Division title this year. Dixon said seniors Knueven (14 points), Alex Niswonger and Justin Levan gave the team strong leadership and consistent play.

“These guys are great kids,” Dixon said. “I don’t think anybody in their right mind expected these kids to win 18 games this year. They overachieved all year.”

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in

H.S. Results for 1/18/17: Centerville girls win a thriller

Centerville’s Meghan Mattingly calmly sank the front end of a double bonus free throw opportunity with 0.4 seconds remaining in the second overtime Wednesday night, lifting Centerville to a heart-stopping 51-50 victory over Lebanon in Greater Western Ohio Conference girls basketball. Mattingly’s free throw, the last of her 9 points, allowed...
Jim Jabir back on court as a men’s coach in Denmark
Jim Jabir back on court as a men’s coach in Denmark

Four months after he stepped down as coach of the Dayton Flyers, citing health reasons, Jim Jabir has returned to coaching. Jabir is the interim coach for SISU Copenhagen, a men’s professional team in Denmark. He will coach his first home game with the team on Friday. Jabir coached Dayton for 13 seasons and has spent his entire career on the...
Baseball Hall of Fame slugger Willie McCovey pardoned by president
Baseball Hall of Fame slugger Willie McCovey pardoned by president

Baseball Hall of Famer and All-Star slugger Willie Covey was one of 64 people pardoned by President Barack Obama this week, decades after conviction on tax evasion charges.
Another Bengals player added to Pro Bowl
Another Bengals player added to Pro Bowl

For the second time in as many days the Cincinnati Bengals have had a player added to the AFC Pro Bowl roster with today’s announcement that left tackle Andrew Whitworth will replace Oakland’s Donald Penn. Defensive tackle Carlos Dunlap was added as a replacement for Houston’s Jadeveon Clowney on Tuesday. Whitworth, who was a first...
6 numbers explain why the Cincinnati Bengals had a losing season
6 numbers explain why the Cincinnati Bengals had a losing season

The NFL’s playoffs are ongoing… and the Bengals are still not part of them. A few numbers can help us understand how Cincinnati was left out in 2016 after making five straight trips to the postseason, and a couple more give hints about what they might do about it. Later this week we will look at whether 2016 left them closer to playoff...
More Stories