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Trojans come from behind for season opening win

Sterling Tyon sinks winning shot

December 1, 2017
By Allison Graham - Sports Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

"A win is a win," said head varsity coach Dustin Peska following his comeback victory over South Tama's longtime rival Grinnell.

The STC Trojans hosted Grinnell for a girl/boy varsity double header on Monday, Nov. 27. It was the season opener for both the STC and Grinnell boys teams.

Peska, who is at the helm of the ship in his first season as the boys head coach, gave all the credit to his players for the win. But coming from behind with less than two minutes on the clock and down by nine, you've got to give at least some credit to the coaching staff.

Article Photos

Following the final buzzer, South Tama’s bench and coaches celebrate their comeback win over Grinnell on Monday, Nov. 27. The Trojans came from behind to best the Tigers 67-64.
News Herald Photo/Allison Graham

In the final minutes of the fourth quarter the Trojans trailed Grinnell 61-52. South Tama began the night ahead of the Tigers with Kaiden Buffalo, Justus Ward, Gabe Shields, Nathan Lasley and Lane Koch starting for the Trojans. Shields, Lasley, Ward and Buffalo all got in shots in the first quarter.

By the time the second quarter rolled around the Tigers had tied up the score at 15 and then took the lead. Grinnell held that lead firmly until late into the 4th quarter. With under a minute to play Tyon threw up back to back three point shots that brought the Trojans within two points of the Tigers lead. Shields tied it at 64 a piece. With three-seconds on the clock Tyon threw up his final three of the night and it sailed through the net. Tyon's shot sent the Tigers to their bench with their tails between their legs in disbelief while STC's home crowd erupted in celebration.

The Trojans struggled with their shooting throughout most of the contest until Shields and Tyon got hot late in the game. Shields led the Trojans with 16 points but was just 33% from the field. Tyon had 13 points to close out the night at 44% from field goal range and 37.5% from beyond the arc. In the end, percentages didn't really matter because the Trojans finished with five from their lineup in double digits.

Fact Box

STC Stats

Pts - Gabe Shields 16, Sterling Tyon 13, Justus Ward 11, Keith Keahna 11, Nathan Lasley 10, Kaiden Buffalo 6

FGM/FGA - Gabe Shields 7-21, Sterling Tyon 4-9, Justus Ward 4-6, Keith Keahna 5-7, Nathan Lasley 5-12, Kaiden Buffalo 2-13, Roger Flores 0-2

3PTM/3PTA - Sterling Tyon 3-8, Kaiden Buffalo 2-8, Gabe Shields 0-6, Roger Flores 0-1

FTM/FTA - Gabe Shields 2-2, Justus Ward 3-7, Sterling Tyon 2-2, Keith Keahna 1-2, Lane Koch 0-2

Off Rebounds - Keith Keahna 5, Gabe Shields 4, Kaiden Buffalo 3, Nathan Lasley 3, Lane Koch 3, Sterling Tyon 1

Defensive Rebounds - Justus Ward 8, Gabe Shields 4, Nathan Lasley 4, Kaiden Buffalo 2, Keith Keahna 2, Shae Betz 1, Lane Koch 1

Assists - Justus Ward 3, Kaiden Buffalo 2, Gabe Shields 2, Roger Flores 1, Nathan Lasley 1

Steals - Gabe Shields 8, Sterling Tyon 4, Justus Ward 3, Lane Koch 1, Keith Keahna 1

Blocks - Justus Ward 1, Gabe Shields 1

"I told the kids that good teams find a way to win. It wasn't the greatest win but we will take it," Peska said of his first win for STC. "We missed a lot of shots, we shot 70 times. We got a lot of shot attempts and we have a lot of athletes, we just have to find a way to put that ball in the bucket a little more and finish around the rim."

According to Peska, it was the urgency that got the Trojans, and particularly Tyon, to hit the shots that counted.

Where the Trojans did excel was on the defensive end of the ball. Shields had eight steals with the team tallying 17 for the night. The Trojans played quick and scrappy and refused to give up.

If Monday's win is any indication of what is to come, the STC boys could be a very interesting team to watch.



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