Rehmert’s Dutchmen battle to second at Belle

Will Johnson

BELLE — Already owning a victory over Belle’s Tigers during the Owensville Tournament two weeks earlier, Todd Rehmert’s Owensville Dutchmen went for another victory over Belle with their tournament championship on the line Saturday night.

Unable to overcome a 26-point second quarter from the home standing Tigers, OHS settled for second place in Tiger country after a 67-55 loss to their Highway 28 neighbors to the west.

“We just didn’t have it tonight,” Rehmert said. “Belle just got hot at the right time and we didn’t have the offensive firepower to answer them.”

In the opening moments of the game, Owensville took the lead first 2-0 on a Cason Gray bucket at the 7:18 mark of the first quarter.

Wyatt Ellis went on to give his Dutchmen teammates leads of 4-2 and 6-4 at the 6:18 and 5:36 marks of the opening quarter respectively.

Gray scored at the 3:10 mark giving OHS their biggest lead of the game thus far at 11-7.

Surviving a 7-4 Belle run to close the quarter, Owensville escaped the first eight minutes with a 15-14 lead.

Catching fire from outside the arc, Belle got a 3-pointer from Brett Butler and two of them from Levi Fortner giving the Tigers a 23-15 lead with 5:30 for the first half.

Gray stopped Belle’s 13-0 run with a basket at the 4:50 mark of the second quarter.

From there, points were scarce for the Dutchmen. Outscored 12-5 the rest of the second quarter by the Tigers, Owensville went into halftime trailing Belle 40-22.

Gray paced the Dutchmen offense with seven first-half points.

Brett Butler countered with 13 first-half points for the Tigers.

Opening the second half, Owensville decided it was their turn to go on a run against the Tigers.

Down 42-22 following another Brett Butler bucket, OHS went on a 13-2 run cutting Belle’s lead back into single digits by a score of 44-35 with 2:21 for the third quarter capped by a pair of Gray free throws.

Answering with a 6-2 run, the Tigers pulled back ahead by double digits going into the fourth quarter, 50-37.

Only able to get as close as 13 on two occasions in the fourth quarter, Owensville saw Belle’s Tiger even up their Highway 28 season series at one win apiece.

Doing equal damage in both halves, Belle’s Skylar Smith led all scorers with 23 points before being named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the tournament based on voting by all six coaches from Belle, Owensville, Missouri Military Academy, Chamois and South Callaway.

Brett Butler followed Skylar in double figures with 19 points.

Doubling his first-half point total in the second half, Gray led the Dutchmen offense with a team-high 14 points. Michael Lahmeyer joined Gray in double figures with 10 points while Sean Irwin just missed double digits with nine points. He also pulled down a team-high eight rebounds.

Kory Bauer nearly posted a double double putting up eight points and seven rebounds.

Ellis added six points and six rebounds followed closely by Brady Smith with four points and seven rebounds.

Tony Terry Jr., and Trevor Abernathy rounded out the OHS scoring against Belle with two points each.

Oddly enough, Owensville and Belle will face off one more time this season on Monday, Jan. 29 as part of a Highway 28 tripleheader at Owensville High School.

It will begin at 5 p.m., with a freshman boy’s game to make up the originally scheduled showdown from Tuesday, Jan. 16 that was canceled due to winter weather.

Following the freshman boys, the varsity girls along with varsity boy’s teams from Belle and Owensville will face off with Highway 28 hardwood bragging rights on the line.

During pool play at Belle, Rehmert’s Dutchmen avenged an earlier loss to Cuba and upset the top-seeded Chamois Pirates.

Opening the Belle Tournament Thursday night against Cuba, OHS edged the Wildcats 17-15 after one quarter before outscoring Cuba 48-28 the rest of their 65-43 victory.

Limiting Cuba senior Levi Mitchell to 11 points, Owensville got a career-high 26 points from senior Sean Irwin.

One of three Dutchmen in double figures against Cuba, Irwin was followed with 15 points from Wyatt Ellis and 10 markers from Brady Smith.

Cason Gray nearly made it four Dutchmen in double digits putting in eight points for OHS.

In Owensville’s 52-47 win over a Chamois team losing Aaron Brandt to an injured ankle, Gray scored eight of his team-high 13 points in the first half.

Irwin followed his 26-point effort scoring all 10 points against the Pirates in the second half.

Catching fire from the charity stripe, Owensville nailed eight free throws in a row in the final :38 to hold on for the win over Chamois.