The Ottumwa boys basketball team needed a bounce-back effort on Tuesday after losing at home the night before. OHS still didn’t have its best player available, but a pair of veterans stepped up in a big way to lead the Bulldogs.
Junior Adam Greiner poured in a career-high 25 points, senior Matt Graeve tied his career high with 17, and Ottumwa rolled to a 67-55 win on the road at Grinnell. The Bulldogs evened their record at 2-2, while the Tigers fell to 2-3.
With both all-state senior Trae Swartz and top reserve Mason Young still sidelined one more game due to Covid concerns, Graeve led the way early, scoring seven points in the first quarter. Ottumwa took firm control in the second quarter, outscoring Grinnell 23-10. Greiner did most of the heavy lifting, at one point knocking down a 3-pointer on three straight possessions. He ended his night with four makes from behind the arc, and also hit all seven of his free throws.
The Bulldogs also played solid defense all night, holding 6-foot-8 Grinnell center Owen Coffman to nine points, six below his average. Ottumwa built a 52-27 lead through three quarters, then played several reserves throughout most of the final quarter.
Joe Hammer scored eight points and Gatlin Menninga added seven for OHS, which should have Swartz and Young back for the next game Monday night at Oskaloosa.
The Ottumwa girls struggled Tuesday against a top-ten opponent, falling 83-24 on the road at Class 4A #8 Grinnell. The Bulldogs dropped to 0-3 on the season, while the Tigers improved to 3-1.
OHS had to face the press defense of the veteran Grinnell squad in the first half, and turnovers allowed the Tigers to quickly widen the margin. Ottumwa turned the ball over 32 times in the game, and only managed to take 29 shots.
Addison Ransom led the Bulldogs with nine points. Ottumwa returns home on Saturday to face Fort Madison.