Athens - Brandon Simoniette was loud and clear in the second half after a relatively quiet first two quarters of play.
The 6-foot-1 senior scored 14 of his game-high 17 points after the break as eighth-seeded Warren High defeated fifth-seeded Waverly High, 45-42, Saturday night in an OHSAA Division II district boys basketball semifinal at the Ohio University Convocaton Center.
“It’s win or go home and I’m not ready for this ride to be over,” said Simoniette. “So, I knew I had to step up.”
Simoniette wasn’t the only Warrior to do that, either, as sophomore Brayden Sallee added 13 points, including a huge putback in the final seconds. Kurt Taylor netted eight points, all in the first half.
“Brayden’s not a sophomore anymore, he’s a junior now,” said a jubliant WHS head coach Blane Maddox. “By this time and with this much experience, he’s a junior now.”
Advancing, Warren (16-9) is scheduled to play seventh-seeded Logan Elm High in a D2 district final at 7 p.m. Thursday.
“Yes! We get to play again,” Maddox said. “We’re coming back to the Convo. I’m so proud of this team.”