LINESVILLE — Conneaut Lake broke free from a three-game losing streak, hanging on for a 58-55 win over Mercer in the opening game of the Linesville All-Sports Boosters’ 30th annual Holiday Basketball Tournament on Monday.

“It’s good to get back in the win column. It’s been a long haul,” said Indians coach Bob Slevin, whose team is now 3-6 on the year.

“We’ve been scoring 40 points, 45 points and that hasn’t been getting it done,” Slevin added. “Tonight we scored 58. That’s our highest of the season.”

With five five players at 6-foot-3 or higher, Lake was able to apply its height on the boards, bringing down a number of errant 3-point tries by Mercer and then setting up the transition game at the other end of the court.

“We got to run the fast break a lot more than we usually do,” said Slevin.

Lake’s sped-up offense meant big showings on the scoreboard for a couple of Indians. Nick Baker, for instance, had a season-high 21 points. Eric Schell added 17. And Colton Alter scored 12.

Mercer, however, didn’t make it easy on the Indians. The Mustangs (1-5) climbed back from an 11-point defecit (46-35) late in the third to tie the game at 55-55 with under 30 seconds to play.

Lake stole a couple of possessions and made its foul shots down the stretch to take back the lead and come away with the win.

Baker was clutch at the free throw line for Lake, hitting 7-of-8 freebies all in the fourth quarter.

Leading Mercer, meanwhile, was Lucas Clarke who hit four treys and scored 23. Kory Stiger added 14 points and Justin Glass scored 13.

Lake will take on Seneca in he tournament’s championship game tonight at 9 p.m. LMercer faces Linesville in the consolation at 6 p.m.

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