With his team's season about to end, Grove City Christian School boys basketball coach Chris Timlin provided a fitting tribute to the Eagles' lone senior.

Timlin removed Taylor Stauffer from a game for the final time in the closing moments of Grove City Christian's 70-46 loss at seventh-seeded Africentric on Feb. 25 in the first round of the Division III district tournament.

The 24th-seeded Eagles finished 5-18 overall.

The first person to hug Stauffer near the bench was his father, Ron, an assistant coach.

"It didn't really feel real," said Stauffer, who scored a career-high 21 points in his final game. "It doesn't really hit you until you get that last sub out. It was a good way to go out, a good final game with a career high. I'm proud with how I played."

Stauffer, a guard, averaged 9.9 points this season.

"I'm going to miss the program," he said. "It's always a good family. They're my brothers and I'm going to miss playing with all of them. It's been a great four years."

The Eagles' top returnee should be junior guard Brayden Holbrook, who averaged 13.4 points and 6.1 rebounds and was named first-team all-MSL-Cardinal Division and honorable mention all-district.

Junior guard Garrett Baker averaged 7.8 points and 8.8 rebounds and was honorable mention all-league.

"Garrett has the potential to be the first player I have ever coached that finishes a season averaging a double-double (in scoring and rebounding) next season," Timlin said. "He is a very unique talent."

Others eligible to return are juniors Koby Brunney (guard), Cameron Donohoe (guard), Tim Sullivan (forward) and Gage Yanke (guard) and sophomores Evan Bowen (forward), Lukas Hamilton (guard) and Christian Lautenschleger (guard).

"I had a very young, inexperienced basketball team," said Timlin, who completed his ninth season. "They played the most difficult schedule I've ever put together and I'm proud of that. I understand that the results weren't what we wanted. What we did, what we went through and what we had to endure this season is going to pay off quite a bit next season."

Grove City Christian went 3-11 in the MSL-Cardinal to tie Fairfield Christian for sixth behind champion Harvest Prep (14-0).

fdirenna@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekFrank