OAK HILL - The Oak Hill Oaks opened their home and regular season Friday night, and went away with an impressive 61-29 victory over the Eastern Eagles in a non-divisional SOC matchup at Oak Hill high school.
Oak Hill opened in midseason form offensively, hitting 22 of 44 from the field for 54.5 percent that included 6 of 10 from three-point range. As impressive as the offense was, Oak Hill head coach Norm Persin was just as impressed by his teams' defense.
"I thought our offensive and defensive movement was great tonight," he said shortly after the game. "We stressed all week that we needed to step up our defensive play, and when we came back in Monday, I think we had some of our best practices since I've been coaching here, and it carried over into tonight."
The Oaks defense held a usually effective Eagles offense to just 11 of 46 shooting from the field for a paltry 23.9 percent that included a 0-for-6 performance from behind the three-point arc.
Free throw shooting was almost identical with the Oaks hitting 7 of 11 while Eastern connected on 7 of 12.
However, Oak Hill held a commanding edge on the boards, 38-16.
The Oaks scored the first five points of the basketball game and never trailed. The Eagles did come back and draw even at five and seven but after Mason Darby connected on a turnaround jumper in the lane at the 1:51 mark to break the deadlock, Oak Hill would never trail again.
The Oaks ended the quarter on a 5-2 run to lead 14-9 at the first stop.
Oak Hill made 5 of 10 from the field and 2 of 5 from three-point range during the first eight minutes of play. Eastern connected on 4 of 10 shots from the floor and split a pair free throws.
In the second quarter, Eastern went stone cold from the field connecting on just 1 of 12 shots from the floor, while Oak Hill made 6 of 10 to build a commanding 29-12 lead at the half.
The halftime break had little effect on either the Oaks offense or their defense as they hit a blistering 10 of 14 from the field while limiting the Eagles to just 4 of 13 shooting to take an insurmountable 54-25 lead into the fourth quarter.
Seven different Oaks reached the scoring column led by Mitchell Hale with a game-high 21 points. Landon Carroll finished with 14 points.
Hunter Cochenhour paced the Eagles with a team-high 11 points.
The Oaks was back in action on Tuesday in a SOC Division II matchup against Waverly. They will travel to Lucasville to face Valley on Friday and will take on Point Pleasant at The University of Rio Grande on Saturday night.