Ball-handling issues hurt Chiefs in loss to Monarchs

MARYSVILLE — After getting swarmed by the full-court pressure of Thurgood Marshall on Saturday, Bellefontaine got another big dose of it here Tuesday.


Bellefontaine’s John Kirby looks for a teammate to pass the ball to during Tuesday night’s game at Marysville. (EXAMINER PHOTO | TONY BARRETT)

The Chiefs struggled at times against Marysville’s pressing and trapping defense. The result was 15 turnovers and a 67-62 non-league loss to the host Monarchs.

“Dribbling the ball against pressure is a problem for us right now,” said Bellefontaine head coach Henry Stolly. “We can’t continue to turn the ball over as much as we have been. We have to find ways in practice to prepare ourselves better to face the press.”

Bellefontaine (7-4) had to play from behind all night against an aggressive Marysville squad.

The Monarchs (6-5) led 10-5 after one quarter and held a 16-7 lead early in the second quarter.

Bellefontaine began to settle in late in the first half. Led by an outstanding inside performance from Caleb Mitchell, the Chiefs cut Marysville’s lead to one point (26-25) with 22 seconds left until halftime.

Marysville used a bucket with 10 seconds left in the second quarter to take a 28-25 lead into the intermission.

Mitchell had 11 points in the second quarter and finished with a career-high 24 points.

“Caleb is doing a lot of good things for us,” said Stolly. “He is as healthy as he has been in a couple of years, and he has worked hard to get himself into good shape.”

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