Sports Writer

SHERWOOD - Paulding had Fairview on the ropes for one half of Saturday’s game in Sherwood. But the host Apaches took control in the third quarter and went on to rally past the Panthers, 50-45.

“We started out really well and had a good rhythm to what we were doing,” explained Paulding coach Brian Miller, whose team never trailed in the opening half of action en route to a 29-21 lead at the break.

Blake McGarvey knocked down a 3-pointer to begin the scoring and Paulding increased the advantage to 18-8 after one quarter, thanks in part to a dominating performance on the boards with Seth Dysinger pulling down seven in the stanza.

Hunter Kauser had five points and Caleb Manz and Dysinger four each in helping Paulding to the early lead in spite of a major setback when McGarvey was sidelined with a hip injury.

“That really hurt us offensively,” Miller noted about playing the rest of the contest without the squad’s leading scorer on the season. “He is just now getting his groove since the broken ankle.”

Still, the Panthers remained in charge taking their biggest lead of the game at 20-8 on a Dysinger hoop to begin the second quarter. A 10-3 Fairview run ignited by a Cade Polter three-point play trimmed the Paulding advantage to 23-18 before consecutive 3-balls from Boston Pease put the Panthers on top 29-18.

Another Polter three-point play with 1:19 to go capped off the first-half scoring.

“Everyone rallied together and we finished out a really good half up eight,” Miller said.

But a 3-point bucket by Polter on the first possession of the third quarter was a sign of what was to come and the 6-1 senior followed with another basket. Luke Timbrook then converted a three-point play to tie the game at 29-29 forcing a Paulding timeout.

The Panthers were never able to regroup, however, with Payton Beckman scoring the lone field goal in a four-point third quarter by Paulding. Polter, who finished with a game-high 26 points, scored 13 in the first eight minutes of action following intermission.

The Apaches were then able to put the game away hitting 9-of-13 free-throw attempts in the final stanza.

“Polter really hurt us to start the second half,” Miller pointed out. “From there it was a dogfight. Beckman and Dysinger were both in foul trouble so we were really challenged offensively.”

Dysinger tallied a dozen points to lead Paulding while Kauser scored nine and Caleb Manz and Pease eight apiece.

“Our kids played their hearts out but we couldn’t score enough to hold up,” Miller concluded. “We aren’t a team that has a lot of scorers, so having injuries and foul trouble makes it tough.”

Fairview, which played the contest without junior starter Ross Zeedyk, improved to 7-5 on the season while Paulding lost its sixth consecutive game in slipping to 2-9.

Paulding 18  11 4 12 -  45

Fairview   8 13 16 13  - 50

PAULDING (45) McGarvey 1-0-3; Kauser 3-2-9; Dysinger 5-2-12; Beckman 2-0-4; Manz 3-2-8; Pease 2-2-8; Schroeder 0-1-1. Totals 16-38 9-13 45.

FAIRVIEW (50) Polter 8-9-26; Ripke 1-0-2; Frank 2-2-6; Singer 0-5-5; Timbrook 2-3-7; Hastings 2-0-4. Totals 15-36 14-24 50.

Three-Pointers: Paulding (Pease 2, McGarvey, Kauser). Fairview (Polter). Rebounds: Paulding 24, Fairview 23. Turnovers: Paulding 13, Fairview 13.. Fouls: Fairview 13, Paulding 20.

Junior Varsity

Paulding 15 8 12 11 8 - 54

Fairview 16 6 12 12 3 - 49