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Red Scare all over Vahakni City in first round win

Updated: Sep 26, 2023

There was some thrilling action at The Basketball Tournament in Columbus on Saturday afternoon, especially for those that decided to take the one hour trip east to watch their beloved Dayton and Ohio State alumni.

When it was all said and done, the vast consortium of the fans inside the Covelli Center were more than happy to see the No. 2 seeded Red Scare easily advance their way to the second round with an 88- 44 win over No. 15 BC Vahakni City.

The Red Scare roster is primarily made up of former Flyers basketball players with a few “rogues” sprinkled in, including former Ohio State players C.J. Walker, Trevor Thompson and Jordan Sibert – who is both a former Buckeye and Flyer after transferring from OSU following his sophomore season.

In all, Red Scare is a 10-man roster and not only did all 10 guys play but all 10 scored.

Sibert and Thompson led the team with 17 and 20 points respectively and Thompson came close to a double-double by leading with nine rebounds.

Walker finished with nine points, two steals, five assists and no turnovers.

Red Scare's head coach is Joey Gruden, a former player for the Flyers and the son of NFL coach Jay Gruden.

And it’s apparent that the coaching gene runs in the family.

Despite having a comfortable 44-21 halftime lead, Gruden felt that his team needed a little locker room pep talk.

“The first half, we started getting a little selfish (and) not sharing the ball. But … I just told them, ‘just play’ because we got to figure out our kinks, too, because this is our first time playing together. So let’s just play the right way because we don’t want to develop bad habits (and) let’s just play the right way and good things will happen, which obviously it did.”

At that point, the Scare had 13 assists to only three turnovers.

They had 10 assists to five turnovers in the second half.

Even still, the Red Scare set themselves out to prove a point.

“Hey, you know, tomorrow’s not a promise,” said Sibert. “You know, this tournament, it’s give it your all or go home. It don’t matter what the score is … you got to stay locked in.”

And that they did all game long by forcing Vahakni into a whopping 16 turnovers with only five assists.

The first quarter started out fairly close with both teams trading buckets and Vahakni taking an early 5-4 lead after the first two minutes of play. But then Sibert and Thompson knocked down back-to-back threes to give Red Scare a 10-5 lead and they would never relinquish it after that.

The first quarter ended with the Scare holding a solid 13-point edge, 27-14. Sibert made four three-pointers in that quarter alone.

The second quarter would prove no different as they held Vahakni to seven points, their second-lowest scoring quarter of the game, to take the 23-point lead into the locker room.

However, Vahakni would come out with some pep in their step to start the second half when they got their deficit under 20 by scoring the third quarter’s first five points. But Sibert answered back with a dagger when he hit a wide open three to push Scare’s lead back above the 20-point mark with 7:33 to play, 47-26.

That sparked a 23-12 run and at the end of 3, the Scare held an even more comfortable lead, 67-38.

But they didn’t let their foot off the gas and outscored Vahakni 20-6 in the final quarter to take home the win. That was the lowest scoring quarter for Vahakni who was led by guard Darious Clark with the only double-double of the game at 19 points and 13 rebounds. Forward Devin Sweetney finished second on the team with 12 points.

Red Scare’s next game is Sunday at 2 p.m. against the No. 10 seed Category 5 which is a Miami, Fla. team made up of primarily southeastern United States players.

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