Photo by Lori PoteetSam Page is a spark on the offensive end for the Athenians.
Photo by Lori Poteet

Sam Page is a spark on the offensive end for the Athenians.
Saturday's Montgomery County, and Sagamore Athletic Conference, showdown between Southmont and Crawfordsville is a tale of teams currently going in opposite directions. The Athenians enter as winners of two of their last three, while the Mounties are on a 4-game slide. However, don't let the records fool you, this promises to be a great matchup.

Southmont (4-8, 0-3 SAC) will look to turn their recent misfortunes with a good showing Saturday. "We need to shoot well and limit turnovers to have a chance," said Southmont head coach Jon Sparks. "Also, we can't surrender easy baskets in transition.

"Defensively, Crawfordsville comes at you with many looks," continued Sparks. "They're good with their full court press, their run and jump, and their 1-3-1 trap, so we have to be aware of what's going on and make adjustments on the fly."

Crawfordsville (3-9, 0-2 SAC) will look to set the tone with their defense. "We're going to have to make some plays on both ends of the court," said Athenian head coach David Pierce. "Our defense has been pretty consistent this year, but offensively, we need some guys to make some plays."

The Mounties enter averaging 49 points-per-game. They are led in scoring by Kaleb Swick and Cam Chadd.

South will be without the services of senior Heath Whalen. Whalen suffered a broken foot this week and could be out the remainder of the year.

Crawfordsville, on the other hand, averages 43 points offensively, and are led by Konnor Smith and Elliott Sadler.

"Swick and Chadd create so much for their offense," said Pierce. "Whether that's penetrating, or getting offensive boards. Their play making abilities make everyone better, so we can't allow them to hurt us."

Both teams will not only look to pick up their first Conference win, but also continue the progression they've made throughout the season.

"It's always important to get wins, especially against county, and conference, opponents," said Sparks. "However, as a team, we want to make progress each and every game.

"We've made our biggest improvements defensively," continued Sparks. "We knew coming in that we had some good defensive players, but we're getting better defensively as a team."

"One thing we have to realize is that it's just another game," said Pierce. "Kids from both sides will be pumped, and I think the one that handles it best will have the best opportunity to be successful.

"Each game we've gotten better" continued Pierce. "Kids have gotten better individually, and we're playing better as a team. I like where we're at."

Both teams will have tough games Friday evening with Wabash River Conference foes.

Southmont will host Class A No. 1 Covington. They enter at 14-1 with their only loss to Class 3A No. 5 Griffith.

Crawfordsville will entertain Fountain Central. The Mustangs enter the contest at 12-5, with two of those losses to Covington.

Game time will be approximately 8 p.m. at CHS.