North Montgomery entered Friday’s second semi-final of the Sugar Creek Classic looking to avenge a 30-point loss to Crawfordsville back on December 14. The Chargers controlled the tempo for much of the first half.
However, it was the Athenians who closed the half on an 8-2 run to take a 9-point lead into the locker room. They’d ride that momentum into the second half, pulling away for a hard fought 49-35 victory over the Chargers.
“If I knew going in that we hold them to 49-points, that’s more our style, and we did a much better job of limiting turnovers,” said Charger coach Andrew Evertts. “We told the guys that it’s hard to be positive because we wanted this game, but I thought they gave great effort tonight.”
The Chargers committed just two in the first quarter, as they led 10-9 with two minutes remaining, only to see the Athenians lead 13-9 after one.
They trailed just 17-14 with 4:53 remaining in the second before a Jesse Johnson-Hall basket, and an and-one from Karsten Williamson and a three from Carson Scott opened up an 11-point lead for Crawfordsville right before the half.
“I thought we played well in spurts. It was little bit of a slower paced game, and I thought North did a better job of adjusting tonight,” said Athenian head coach David Pierce. “Coach Evertts made a great adjustment sending someone to the middle so we couldn’t run our jump and run defense.”
The Chargers closed it to 8 early in the third on a rebound basket by Conner Cain. Nonetheless, the Athenians would stretch their second half lead to as many as 18 before a 5-0 run by the Chargers gave us the final tally.
North Montgomery (2-9) were led by Bradford’s 9 and Jackman’s 7. Conner Cain pulled down 7-boards while Preston Shaw had 6-caroms.
“I still like our fight. We’re 2-9 right now, but you wouldn’t know that from our locker room or practices,” Evertts said. “The guys are staying really positive and working hard. They may not have played well for 32 minutes, but they played hard.”
The Chargers will face Southmont in tonight’s consolation game at 6:00 looking to rebound from a 1-point overtime loss back on November 30.
“We told our guys that we have a big opportunity tonight,” said Evertts. “We can’t pout about playing in the consolation game. I’m glad we get another shot, and we’ll see how much better we are this time.”
Crawfordsville (6-3) had three in double figures. Johnson-Hall had a double-double with 15-points and 10-boards. Williamson finished with 12 and Will Kellerman finished with 10.
The Athenians outrebounded the Chargers 38-32.
“I thought we rebounded well and that was huge. Our guys were immediately looking up the floor and that created some transition points,” added Pierce. “If we don’t do that, it would’ve been a closer game, and I think that was the difference.”
The Athenians will face Western Boone in tonight’s championship game around 7:30.
“Tomorrow’s going to be interesting. They’ve been playing well lately, and we’re going to have to be prepared for that,” Pierce said of the Stars. “They’re a disciplined team, play physical defense, and we’re excited for the challenge.”

 

CRAWFORDSVILLE 49, NORTH MONTGOMERY 35

ATHENIANS        13           12           15           9—49

CHARGERS          10           6              11           8—35

 

CRAWFORDSVILLE

Player                   FG-A      FT-A       R             F              PTS

JOHNSON-HALL 6-11       2-4          10           2              15

WILLIAMSON                     5-10       1-1          4              1              12

KELLERMAN                       4-11       1-2          3              1              10

SAUNDERS                          2-4          1-6          7              2              5

SCORZA                0-2          0-0          0              3              0

GONZALEZ                          2-4          0-0          5              2              4

SCOTT                   1-3          0-0          1              2              3

HEINOLD                              0-0          0-0          1              0              0

DECKER                0-0          0-0          0              1              0

LYNAS                   0-0          0-0          1              0              0

SCHROETER                        0-2          0-2          1              1              0

HENSLEY                              0-1          0-0          0              0              0

Totals                    20-48     5-15       33           15           49

Percentages: FG .417, FT .333.  3-Pointer: 4-11 (Scott 1-1, Johnson-Hall 1-1, Williamson 1-3, Kellerman 1-3, Scorza 0-1, Gonzalez 0-2) Team Rebounds: 5.

 

NORTH MONTGOMERY

Player   FG-A      FT-A       R             F              PTS

BRADFORD         4-13       0-0          1              3              9

JACKMAN           3-8          0-0          3              3              7

KOBEL   2-6          2-2          1              3              6

SHAW   2-3          1-3          6              1              5

CAIN      2-2          0-2          7              1              4

VERDUIN             1-3          0-1          1              2              2

THOMPSON       1-3          0-0          3              0              2

WARREN              0-2          0-0          1              0              0

FRITZEN               0-1          0-2          4              0              0

Totals    15-41     3-10       27           13           35

Percentages: FG .366, FT .300. 3-Pointer: 2-14 (Jackman 1-3, Bradford 1-7, Kobel 0-1, Verduin 0-1, Warren 0-2) Team Rebounds: 5.