COLUMBIA CITY — Columbia City’s boys basketball team turned the tables against Homestead Tuesday night.
Unlike the Eagles’ first meeting with Homestead in late December, when they fell to a 16-0 deficit in the opening minutes, Columbia City scored the first points and had the lead at halftime.
Despite the improvements, the Eagles still fell to the undefeated Spartans, 65-55, Tuesday in Columbia City.
Homestead beat the Eagles by 18 points in their first meeting, after taking out their starters for much of the second half after taking a 32-12 lead.
Tuesday’s contest was a completely different ballgame, as the Eagles had a one-point lead going into the second half.
Brandon Gay started the game out with intensity as he hit two 3-pointers in two minutes and drew a charge on the defensive end, sparking Columbia City to a 15-8 lead five minutes into the game.
Drew Benedict scored eight points in the second quarter. He opened the period with a 3-pointer and a foul for the possibility of a four-point play to tie the score after another bucket by Gamble.
Benedict missed the free throw, but drew a charge on the defensive end.
He did the same just before halftime after hitting a 3-pointer. Benedict hit two free throws as a result of the foul to take the lead back for the first time since the first quarter, 30-29 at halftime.
Matt Rethlake and Daniel Woll both hit 3-pointers in the final 60 seconds to cut the deficit to five going into the final eight minutes.
Columbia City started the quarter with two consecutive turnovers.
The Eagles only had a five-point deficit with five minutes left to play, but two more turnovers and strong offensive play by Homestead put the game out of reach.
Gay finished the game with a pair of free throws to make the score 65-55.
Columbia City is back in action Friday, hosting Manchester.