Coming up short: East denied upset

A high scoring third-quarter gave Columbus East a chance to give 3A No. 1 ranked Brownstown Central its first loss of the season, but the Olympians could not keep it up in the fourth quarter.

The 20-point third quarter gave the Olympians a four point lead, but the Braves managed to keep its undefeated season after battling back for a 65-60 victory.

East missed five of its 12 fourth-quarter free-throws, while Brownstown hit seven of eight to help put the game away.

“I thought our kids played with great effort and energy all four quarters,” East coach Brent Chitty said. “We missed some shots early in the game that maybe came back to haunt us, and maybe some free-throw shooting in the fourth quarter that we have to tighten up.”

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Chaz Painter scored a team-high 17 points, and Matthew Frost led the third-quarter charge by knocking down two 3-pointers scoring a two point bucket right before the buzzer.

Frost helped the Olympians (6-10) the third quarter with a 9-1 run and scored all 16 of his points in the second half. He shot 5 of 5 from the field and hit both of his free-throws.

“We wanted Matthew to have a breakout, and we think this could be his breakout,” Chitty said. “We have a lot of confidence in him.”

The Braves (17-0) led for almost the entire game and went into halftime with a 30-23 lead, but East held them to just nine third-quarter points to go into the fourth with a 43-39 lead.

Brownstown found its offense again at the start of the fourth and went on a 9-3 run to regain the lead. The Braves had a 56-49 lead with 3:12 left in the game and took the momentum away from the Olympians.

East did not let Brownstown get too comfortable as it went on a 5-0 run of its own to come within two points with just over a minute-and-a-half remaining. Frost hit his fourth 3-pointer of the game with 15 seconds left to bring the Olympians within 63-60. East was forced to foul, and two clutch free-throws by the Braves sealed their win.