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Mascoutah MVC streak ends at Triad

Jake Stewart takes a free throw in conference action.

By Anthony Jones

Since Feb. 28, 2020, Mascoutah had dominated the rest of the Mississippi Valley Conference. Their dominance shined through with two consecutive undefeated league crowns and a 23 game win streak. No opponent played the Indians closer than four points over that stretch.

Their momentum rolled into this winter’s season, as they jumped out to a 3-0 start against league opponents and held sole possession of the conference lead.

But then came a Dec. 12 visit to the Triad Knights.

The opening eight minutes saw several lead changes and leads no larger than four points. Mascoutah outscored their hosts 12-10 at the end of the first quarter, but would not do so for the remainder of the evening.

A few minutes into the second quarter, senior Aydin Hitt landed a three point shot from the top of the arc to regain the lead at 17-14. 

The lead would shortly flip back in the Indian’s favor at 20-19, but a pair of late free throws from Owen Droy and a drive to the rim from Drew Winslow fueled Triad to a 23-20 advantage at intermission.

As the points slowed in the second half, Mascoutah clawed their way back into a 29-29 tie late in the third. However, a corner three from AJ Mills swished through the net just before the end of the period and Triad once again led at 32-29.

An 8-0 run for the Knights started the fourth quarter and they would not stop there. By the end of the fourth quarter, Triad outscored the visitors 15-4 to leave with a 47-33 victory.

Winslow finished with a game high 18 points in the win, with all of his points coming from inside the arc. McGrady Noyes added on 12 more after a perfect shooting day from the field and the line.

On the defensive side of the ball, Triad did not allow a single Mascoutah player to hit double digits. Mills also finished the game with five steals.

The Knight’s win results in a three way tie for the conference lead between themselves, Mascoutah and Jersey at 3-1. Triad returns to league action on Jan. 6 when they visit the Jersey Panthers.

Next up for the 8-3 Knights is what figures to be a historic Prairie Farms Holiday Classic Tournament at Collinsville. Triad’s first game in the sixteen team bracket comes against Collierville, Tennessee on Dec. 28, which will be played at 7:30 p.m.

This season’s tournament, which will feature its thousandth game, will also feature a shot clock. The key change is part of a new policy from the IHSA to allow shootouts and tournaments to receive permission to use a 35 second shot clock.

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