ONTARIO — Alex Depperschmidt delivered the dagger Tuesday night.
Better known for his prowess on the soccer pitch than the basketball court, Depperschmidt connected on a pair of critical third-quarter 3-pointers to help Lexington to a 62-52 win over Ontario at the O-Rena.
The Minutemen improved to 11-0 and sent the Warriors (5-4) to their third straight loss.
A first-team All-Ohio soccer player, Depperschmidt bounced off the bench to score 11 points. His back-to-back treys helped the Minutemen turn a 26-22 halftime advantage into a 46-34 leading heading to the fourth period.
“I was pretty wide open and it felt good coming off,” said Depperschmidt, who was 4-for-5 from the field and connected on 3-of-4 treys. “The reason I get all those baskets is because Baden (Forup). Baden is getting doubled and he turns and finds me.
“It takes us to another level if we can have four or five scorers.”
Lexington trailed only briefly in the first quarter, but could never open a comfortable margin on the upstart Warriors. A layup by Ontario’s Carter Weaver with 3:15 remaining in the third period cut Lex’s lead to 35-32.
Seconds later, Depperschmidt hit the first of his consecutive triples to make it 38-32 with 2:57 left in the frame. Another 3 just 47 seconds later made it 41-32.
“We’ve not been shooting the ball very well the last couple of games,” Lexington coach Scott Hamilton said. “We’ve got a couple of guys who we knew could knock down some 3s.
“Al was having a good night. He took his time, sighted it in and knocked it down. I’m happy for him.”
A layup by Gage Weaver cut Lexington’s lead to 41-34, but another 3-pointer by Gavin Husty pushed the advantage to 44-34.
Back-to-back 3-pointers by Ontario’s Grayson Purvis and Grady Schroeder cut Lexington’s lead to 46-40 early in the fourth quarter, but the Minutemen responded with a 10-3 run capped by a pair of Elijah Hudson free throws to make it 56-43 with 3:18 remaining.
Ontario made one final charge, cutting the margin to 56-50 on a pair of Weaver freebies with 2:20 remaining, but that’s as close as the Warriors would get. Lexington’s A.J. Young connected on four straight free throws in the final 1:05 to preserve the win.
“You’ve got to give Depperschmidt credit,” Ontario coach Tim Mergel said. “The kid stepped into his shot. He looked like he’s done it a thousand times.
“It hurt us, but we made that run to six. We kind of shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times.”
Forup led Lexington with 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting. Young matched Depperschmidt with 11 points, while Husty and Hudson each had eight as Lex shot 66% from the field (23-for-35).
Landon Foltz led Ontario with a game-high 15 points. Weaver added 10, while Schroeder and Braxton Hall had eight points apiece.
Lexington owned a commanding 24-14 advantage on the glass as Forup and Hudson Moore each swiped six rebounds. Weaver had a team-best four boards for the Warriors.
Lexington will try to extend its best start to a season since 2015-16 Friday at Ashland before taking on St. Marys Memorial in the Fort Loramie MLK Classic on Sunday. Memorial is led by Austin Parks, a 6-foot-11 Ohio State recruit.
Ontario will try to snap its three-game skid Friday at Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference-leading Shelby. The Warriors host Ashland on Saturday.