Chieftains triple their joy

Bellefontaine grabs sectional crown with third win over Tippecanoe


ABOVE: Bellefontaine’s Tristin Tillman scores two of his game-high 21 points in Saturday’s win over Tippecanoe. FRONT PAGE PHOTO: Bellefontaine players celebrate at the end of Saturday’s 53-45 win over Tippecanoe in the Division II sectional finals at Springfield High School. (EXAMINER PHOTOS | TONY BARRETT)

SPRINGFIELD — Bellefontaine proved to be Tippecanoe’s Kryptonite this winter.

Three of the Red Devils’ seven losses this season came at the hands of the Chieftains, the latest coming Saturday night in a Division II sectional final at Springfield High School.

Bellefontaine overcame an eight-point halftime deficit to beat Tippecanoe 53-45 and complete a season sweep of the Red Devils.

“This is huge for us,” said Bellefontaine senior guard A.J. Gorham. “We consider Tipp our biggest rival in the league. They have had a great program for a long time. A lot of players (from Bellefontaine) didn’t win three games against them in their entire career. We won three in the same season. It’s a great feeling.”

The Chiefs (16-8) will play Cincinnati Taft at 9 p.m. Friday in a district championship game at the University of Dayton.

It will be Bellefontaine’s first district tournament appearance in seven years.

“This win belongs to our community and to our kids who have worked hard to stay positive,” said Bellefontaine head coach Henry Stolly. “It is not about any one person. It has been a collaborative effort. I’m just so proud of our kids for believing in what we have asked of them.”


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