“I just want to give it everything I have,” McKee said.
Trailing rival Greeneview by nine points early in the first quarter on Tuesday night, McKee senior scored 11 of his game-high 20 points in the second quarter as Southeastern won 58-44 in Ohio Heritage Conference South Division action.
“I saw the scoreboard and looked at my team,” McKee said. “I didn’t want to let them down.”
Senior Ayden Robinson added 11 points as Southeastern improved to 10-6 and 9-4 in the South Division.
“I was so happy with their play,” Southeastern coach Chris Stout said. “I’m so proud of them. … (McKee) couldn’t miss. He took over the game. He stepped up as a leader and went after it.”
Senior Chase Allen scored 19 points as Greeneview fell to 10-6 and 9-4 in the division.
“Southeastern came out with a good game plan,” said Rams coach Kyle Fulk. “They played extremely well and we did not. I think we took a step backwards tonight as a team. We had been moving forward pretty well and playing some good basketball. It’s a wakeup call that some things that maybe we’ve gotten away with, good teams are going to expose. I’m disappointed, even with myself. We’re better than what we showed, so if we do that, I feel like I have nobody to blame but myself. We’ll try to bounce back.”
Allen scored 10 points in the first quarter as the Rams jumped out to an early 12-3 lead. After a Southeastern timeout, the Trojans slowly creeped back into the game, tying the score at 17 on back-to-back 3-pointers by McKee and junior Brennan Workman.
The second quarter belonged to McKee. He scored 11 points in the period capped by a 3-pointer with about two minutes remaining that gave the Trojans a 30-26 advantage.
“The ball just kind of landed in my hands and I was able to get open and make the shots,” McKee said.
Robinson followed with another 3-pointer that made it 33-26 at the half.
In the third quarter, the Trojans held Greeneview to just one field goal, extending their lead to 40-29. They led by as many as 21 points in the fourth quarter to earn the victory.
“We couldn’t generate any momentum,” Fulk said. “Defensively, I thought we played better than we did in the first half. We couldn’t score and we couldn’t make free throws. We were like 5-for-22 from the free throw line. Shots weren’t going in and you’ve got to be pretty good on defense if you’re going to have nights like that and we were OK, but not at the level we need to be to win a game like that.”
Cedarville (14-4, 11-3) beat Greenon 66-36 on Tuesday night to remain in first place in the South Division. Both Southeastern and Greeneview are one game back of the Cedarville.
Southeastern is starting to find its form over the last few weeks. After starting the season 4-4, the Trojans have won six of their last eight games and their two losses came by one point each.
“It will be tough for someone to beat (Cedarville), but anything is possible,” Stout said. “We want to be playing our best here in a couple weeks and I think we’re right there. We’re showing it. We’ve been showing it since the first of the year, that’s when we started to hit our stride. We’ve been gaining on that momentum.”
Greeneview’s focus will turn to improving over the last few games as it heads into the postseason, Fulk said.
“If (Cedarville loses) that’s great, but we’ve got to focus on us,” he said. “We can’t worry about the stuff we can’t control. We’ve got to figure out how to get better. If somebody helps us out, that’s great, but if not, we’ve got to carry it over into a tournament