The start was good enough for the Salem High School boys’ basketball team.

It didn’t last, however.

After opening the game by scoring seven of the game’s first nine points, the Tigers would not score again in the first period to fall behind the Vienna Eagles in their first game of 2021 Saturday, Jan. 2 at Vienna High School.

Salem would lead just once more – by one point to start the fourth quarter – and fell to Vienna 70-60.

That dropped the Tigers to 2-6, as they finished 1-2 in the 16-team Cabool Holiday Tournament to close out the 2020 portion of the schedule.

In the tournament Salem topped Summersville 47-37 in the first round Dec. 26, fell to Licking 68-48 in the quarterfinals Dec. 28 and lost to host Cabool 65-56 in the consolation semifinals Dec. 29.

This week Salem was scheduled to host Newburg in a rescheduled game Tuesday and Eldon Friday (5:30 p.m.) at the Salem High School gym.

Jan. 2

Vienna 70, Salem 60

A driving layup by 6-3 senior forward Braiden Carmack at the 5:10 mark of the first period gave the Tigers a 7-2 advantage.

However, the rest of the opening quarter Vienna outscored Salem 15-0. And a three-pointer by senior guard Nathan Kleffner to close out the period gave the Eagles a 17-7 edge.

The Eagle lead would grow to 11 when senior guard Layne Hogshooter hit a free throw midway through the second quarter. The Tigers chipped away the rest of the half. And a 12-foot jumper from the left corner by Carmack at the buzzer cut the Salem halftime deficit to 28-24.

Salem continued to close in during the third period until Carmack buried a three-pointer at the 5:15 mark to tie the game at 35. The teams would trade baskets the rest of the period and Carmack’s driving layup with :10 left cut Vienna’s advantage to 47-46 entering the fourth quarter.

Carmack then dropped in a 12-footer to open the fourth quarter and give Salem its first lead since the first quarter. However, the Eagles went on a 6-0 run over the next 1:16 to regain a five-point spread.

The Tigers wouldn’t lead again, as in the final 3:25 Vienna outscored Salem 15-9. A fast-break layup by junior forward Trey Snodgrass with :40 left gave the host team a 12-point lead to ice things.

Carmack paced Salem with 23 points while 6-9 senior post Lucas Morrison added 17. Four Eagles scored in double figures, led by Hogshooter with 22 points.

In the junior varsity game Vienna’s Daniel Casey hit a free throw with :06 left to give the Eagles a 47-46 victory. Salem’s Tucker Smith canned a three-pointer with :17 remaining to tie the JV game prior to Casey’s free throw.

Smith led the Salem JV squad with 14 points.

Varsity

Vienna 70, Salem 60

Salem (2-6): Konkel 3-2-8, Arzt 1-0-2, Connell 2-1-5, Carmack 10-2-23, Smith 1-0-3, Simpson 1-0-2, Morrison 7-3-17, Totals 25-8-60.

Vienna (6-4): Magner 2-0-5, Steffen 2-0-6, Kleffner 6-1-14, Vanscoy 4-2-11, Hogshooter 9-3-22, Snodgrass 6-0-12, Totals 29-6-70.

The score by periods:

Salem         7    17    22    14-60

Vienna      17    11    19    23-70

Junior Varsity

Vienna 47, Salem 46

Salem: Smith 5-2-14, Barred 2-4-8, B. May 3-1-9, E. May 5-0-10, Heavin 1-0-2, Wilson-Webber 1-1-3, Totals 17-8-46.

Vienna: Stricklan 3-2-8, John 1-2-4, Collins 9-1-20, Magner 3-1-7, Casey 2-4-8, Totals 18-10-47.

Cabool Holiday Tourney

In the Cabool Tournament championship game Dec. 30 top-seeded Thayer defeated second-seeded Alton 56-50. Also on the final day, in the third-place game Norwood clipped Licking 52-50; in the fifth-place game Cabool got past Gainesville 52-46, and in the consolation finals Summersville topped Dora 59-44.

Thayer’s Jordan Andrews was selected the tournament’s MVP. Also on the all-tournament team were Thayer’s Jayce Haven and Gaige Pitts; Alton’s Cainan Heck, Brandon DeWolf and Chanler Sisco; Norwood’s Garrett Davault, and Licking’s Bryce Corley.

“We have made improvements in several areas, but have yet to put it all together,” said Salem head coach Bryan Carty. “When we get it all right we will be very tough to beat. We rebound well. We shoot a pretty good percentage. We’ve gotten the turnovers under control. Now we just have to compete every possession.”

Dec. 29

Consolation Semifinals

Cabool 65, Salem 56

Salem’s SCA rival Cabool took the early lead, going into the second period with a 15-10 advantage and outscoring the Tigers 18-13 the rest of the way to go into halftime up 33-23.

The Tigers cut into their deficit by outscoring Cabool 18-13 in the third period. However, the Bulldogs had a 19-point fourth quarter to stay in control.

Morrison had 22 points and Carmack 16 for the Tigers.

Only four players scored for Cabool, led by senior Jacob Shockley with 22 points and senior Trevor Atkins with 18.

Salem: Konkel 5-0-13, Arzt 1-0-2, Carmack 6-3-16, Smith 1-0-3, Morrison 7-7-22, Totals 20-10-56.

Cabool: Byerley 2-5-10, Primanzon 5-4-15, Atkins 3-10-18, Shockley 8-4-22, Totals 18-23-65.

The score by periods:

Salem       10    13    18    15-56

Cabool      15    18    13    19-65

Dec. 28

Quarterfinals

Licking 68, Salem 48

Corley, a senior forward, fired in eight points in the opening to quarter to get the Licking Wildcats going. Salem was down 19-7 after the first period and trailed the rest of the way. It was 42-22 at halftime and 53-35 after three quarters.

Carmack had 19 points and Morrison 12 to lead Salem.

Corley netted 16 points and 6-4 senior Wilson Murray 14 for Licking.

Salem: Konkel 2-0-4, B. May 1-0-2, Connell 2-1-5, Carmack 8-1-19, Smith 0-2-2, Simpson 1-2-4, Morrison 6-0-12, Totals 20-6-48.

Licking: Wallace 3-2-9, Rinne 1-1-3, Antle 1-0-3, Corley 8-0-16, McCleod 2-0-4, Medlock 1-0-3, Huff 3-0-6, Cook 3-1-10, Murray 4-5-14, Totals 26-9-68.

The score by periods:

Salem         7    15    13    13-48

Licking     19    23    11    15-68

Dec. 26

First Round

Salem 47, Summersville 37

Bouncing back from a slow start the Tigers knocked off the Summersville Wildcats.

Salem managed just 14 points over the defense-dominated first half – just five in the first quarter – and went into intermission down 17-14.

However, the Tiger offense got going in the second half, scoring 16 points in the third period and 17 points in the final quarter.

Summersville was limited to just 20 points after intermission.

Morrison had 16 points while Carmack added 15 for the Tigers.

Salem: Konkel 1-2-4, E. May 1-0-2, Arzt 0-1-1, Connell 1-0-3, Carmack 7-1-15, Smith 0-1-1, Simpson 2-0-5, Morrison 8-0-16, Totals 20-5-47.

Summersville: Buschmann 2-6-12, Duncan 7-3-17, Greear 0-2-2, Burkhardt 1-0-2, Prisco 2-0-4, Totals 12-11-37.

The score by periods:

Summersville      8      9      9    11-37

Salem                  5      9    16    17-47