XENIA — Being a more defensively sound team is what Legacy Christian ultimately wants to hang its hat this season.
Having the ability to get Jacob Thompson the ball on offense is a good option in the meantime.
Legacy Christian got contributions from both in a 57-41 win at home Tuesday against Twin Valley South to improve to 2-0 on the season.
The Knights held the Panthers to single digits during the second and fourth quarters and played through an early 8-0 TVS run to hold its opponent under 50 points for the second time in as many games.
“I see the boys committing to play team defense,” head coach Steve Seitz said. “Defense was the key this offseason because everybody can score, but it’s about keeping teams and opponents under 40.”
Those opponents may have a hard time keeping Thompson to low totals too.
The sophomore big man helped get LCA’s offense rolling in the second quarter after the team trailed 12-9 early. After halftime, Thompson took over the game.
Thompson single-handily started a 9-2 run to start the third quarter, which included a three from the corner to extend a 10-point lead the Knights held at the break. He later slammed home his first varsity dunk, according to Seitz, during a fast break in the closing minutes of the fourth.
Finishing with 29 points and unofficially 15 rebounds, TVS had no answer to stop him.
“He’s a big part of our defense too,” Seitz said. “He had several blocks thrown in and we’re blessed to have him.”
One player Legacy Christian may potentially be without coming out of Tuesday’s win is Blake Schwartzkopf. After leading the team in scoring during the season opener at Bradford, Schwartzkopf injured his ankle early in the first quarter of Tuesday’s game and did not return.
Seitz said Schwartzkopf is the “heart and soul” of the team and has been the backbone of what he want the team’s defense to become.
While the Knights are upperclassmen heavy in players currently seeing floor time, experience at the varsity level is lacking.
Seitz said he feels the offseason emphasis in building a next play mentality and putting the focus on defense should help a senior loaded group overcome that challenge.
“We can create those moments where we can play through adversity because we’re going to have that happen,” he said. “We just don’t want to be lackadaisical to help get over our mistakes.”
Parker Burke had 10 points and Tommy Michael and Nate Hess both added six.
Those trio of seniors helped get the job done with their play on Tuesday. Seitz believes their play on the defensive end is what could continue propelling the team to success.
“The senior class has played together forever,” Seitz said. “But playing as a team in individual defense and team defense is going to be the biggest thing because we’re going to shoot, we’re going to score.”
Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on X (formerly Twitter) @Steven_Wright_.