EAST PALESTINE OH- it was the battle at Waterloo that went down as the historic defeat of Napoleon, and on Wednesday night East Palestine narrowly escaped a defeat by holding off the Waterloo Vikings 58-50.
East Palestine came out swinging. They rattled off 21 points in the first quarter to jump out to a 21-11 lead after one frame. In what would be a theme all night Waterloo would surge back into the game with help from their perimeter shooting. Waterloo has the lead 26-24 with less than a minute to go in the second quarter. Then a huge swing of events went in favor of Palestine, they hit a deep three and then quickly caused a turnover and hit a layup to go up 29-26 at the half.
The third frame much like the first belonged to the Bulldogs. They opened the third quarter scoring four points and going back ahead by seven. They’d end up with an eight point 42-34 lead after three. Palestine held that lead for a big section of the fourth frame, until Waterloo once again made a late surge. They cut a 54-45 lead to 54-50 with about 1:30 to go. The Bulldogs showed great resilience in handling the late momentum swing and scoring the last four points of the game. They escaped the upset, and picked up a massive win for a program that was hungry for a tournament victory. East Palestine is just the third team to beat Waterloo this year when the Vikings score 40 points or more.
Kenzee Johnston led with 16 points for the Bulldogs. Joclyn Fristik finished with 15, and Morgan Rutledge added 14.
The Bulldogs advance to play at South Range in the sectional finals on Saturday at 1:00.