CLAYTON — After winning its season opener against Springboro the Northmont varsity basketball team has gone on an eight game losing streak.
Friday night Springfield handed the Thunderbolts their eighth straight defeat, 72-58.
The solution to the Thunderbolts’ woes has been elusive at best. Head coach Shane Kincer has inserted sophomores into the starting lineup in search of something to spark the offense, but so far nothing seems to be working.
“I guess our biggest problem right now is that we are trying to find the right lineup to give us an opportunity to win,” Kincer said. “We are going with two sophomores at the point guard position right now and playing another sophomore quite a few minutes recently.
“They are all starting to give us small spurts to give us chances,” Kincer added. “They’ve got to understand the importance of every possession in the basketball game to give us an opportunity to win. We are not good enough to take off a possession and not play at the full strength. Once we make every possession count, we will get a win.”
Springfield started to pull away late in the first quarter and led by 10 at halftime.
Northmont showed signs of life in the third quarter. Patrick Ivory buried a three-pointer and Jordan Smith scored inside to cut the deficit to 45-38.
Ray Cole scored three baskets and a free throw to boost the Wildcats’ lead to 57-40 entering the final quarter. Northmont never recovered and trailed by as much as 20 points in the final eight minutes.
Kincer believes his team is showing signs of improvement.
“We are close. We’ve competed against two really physical, good basketball programs the last two Friday nights and we’ve got to get over the hump tomorrow night against Alter,” Kincer stated.
SPRF 21 36 57 72 – 72
NMT 13 26 40 58 – 58
Springfield: Larry Stephens 2-0-4, Jalan Minney 3-0-6, Jeff Tolliver 2-1-5, Ty Brown 1-2-4, Josh Tolliver 6-2-17, Devin Alston 4-0-8, Jamon Miller 1-0-2, Ray Cole 6-3-15, Tyron Barns 1-0-2, Jordan Howard 4-0-9. Totals: 30-8-72.
Northmont: Markus Allen 2-1-3, Patrick Ivory 7-6-21, Andrew White 1-0-3, Jalen Coffey 1-0-2, Jordan Smith 8-2-19, Trent Freeman 1-0-2, Stephen Kellum 1-0-2, Max Scott III 2-1-6. Totals: 23-9-58.
Three-point goals: Springfield 4 (Josh Tolliver 3, Howard); Northmont 4 (Ivory, Scott, Smith, White).
Records: Springfield 4-5 (3-2), Northmont 1-8 (1-4).
JV Score: Springfield 62 Northmont 49.
Ron Nunnari can be reached at 684-9124, via email at Rnunnari@aimmediamidwest.com or on Twitter @NunnariRon