COLUMBUS – Senior T.J. Metzer flirted with full custody of a state championship game scoring record. The senior from Ottawa-Glandorf will settle for sharing that record and a state championship with his teammates.
Metzger scored 36 points, including making nine three-pointers, to lead Ottawa-Glandorf to a 67-46 victory over Versailles Saturday in the Ohio Division III state final.
Metzger equaled the 36 points scored by Sparta Highland’s J.T. Hoyng in an 80-61 win against Cincinnati Indian Hill. He did break Hoyng’s Division III state tournament record of eight three-pointers made in a single game and equaled the all-time state tournament record, set by Lima Senior’s Desmond Lyles in an 88-86 overtime loss against West Chester Lakota for the Division I title in 1992.
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The championship is the third in four title game appearances for Ottawa-Glandorf to go along with a Division II title in 2004 and a Division III title in 2008. The Titans, ranked sixth in the final Associated Press state poll, finished 26-3 after reaching the state semifinals last year. Unranked Versailles ends its season at 23-6. It was the Tigers’ second runner-up finish; they were also in the Division III final in 2004.
“You live for these moments,” said Metzger. “This is awesome. I can’t wait to get back to town.”
Metzer made eight of his 10 field goals in the first half, including 7-of-9 three-pointers, as the Titans took a 35-20 lead into the locker room. The teams began the game with a pair of ties and three lead changes in the first three minutes but Ottawa-Glandorf took control with a 12-0 run over a span of 3:35, including eight points from Metzger, for a 21-9 lead.
Versailles scored the first six points of the third quarter to cut the deficit to nine points, 35-26, but the Titans answered right back with an 8-1 run of their own to take their largest lead of the game at that point, 43-27, all without the aid of Metzger scoring.
Metzger didn’t get his first points of the second half until 1:58 remained in the third quarter. Versailles had again cut the Titans’ lead to nine points, this time on a three-pointer by Damien Richard, but Metzger broke free from the defense for an open look from the top of the key. He buried it for a 46-34 lead and equal Hoyng’s Division III championship game record of eight three-pointers.
“You wanted to get a hand in his face at all times because he was going off non-stop,” said Versailles sophomore guard Kyle Ahrens. “It got really tiring in the second half.”
Metzger finished the game 11 of 17 from the field and 9-of-14 on three-pointers. Senior forward Michael Rosebrock finished with eight points and eight rebounds for the Titans. Ottawa-Glandorf outrebounded Versailles 34-24 and made 22 of 43 field goals (51.2 percent) overall.
“We’ve got some pretty big guys and our guys are pretty athletic but those guys are stacked. They’re huge. All of them look like they live in the weight room,” said Ottawa-Glandorf coach Tyson McGlaughlin. “We talked to our guys about the importance of being able to go out there hit them again. They shoot a lot of threes and a lot of fade-aways and when you have guys that shoot like that there are a lot of long rebounds. We had to hit it and get it. I thought our guys did a good job of that.”
Versailles got 12 points from Ahrens and 10 points from senior guard Chad Winner.