Boys Basketball

Mounties survive late Clover rally


CLOVERDALE — Southmont and Cloverdale boys basketball squared off at Cloverdale on Saturday after both teams were coming off Friday night games. Southmont took down Sagamore Conference and Montgomery County rival North Montgomery in a very physical and draining 50-42 win in what was their season opener. Cloverdale fell to Edgewood 62-35. The game proved to a battle all night long as the host Clovers weren’t backing down from Southmont. With the Mounties clinging to a 35-29 lead with 1:14 to go, a pair of Southmont turnovers made the game a lot more interesting. The first resulted in a made three by the Clovers to cut the game to 35-32 with 30 seconds left. Then Noah Betz stole the inbounds pass and threw home a thunderous dunk to cut it to 35-34. South then missed a pair of free throws and  with just over two seconds left on the clock, the Clovers had an in-bounds play to win the game. Scottie McGuire was as open as he could be but the shot was off and the Mounties held on for a 35-34 win.

Even though it most will see the game as an ugly win for the Mounties, first-year coach Michael Byrum was up-beat after the win and knows that every win should be celebrated.

“It’s December 2nd and this is our second game of the year,” Byrum noted. “We have a very long time before we need to be playing our best basketball of the season when they sectional rolls around. The kids had their heads down because they know they didn’t play their best, but I had to remind them that it doesn’t matter how much we win by because if everything works out like we hope into late February we’ll be winning a sectional and it doesn’t matter if it’s by one point or 20 points. We did have some luck and things go our way to get out of here with a win, but we got the job done.”

In their first two games of the season Cloverdale (0-3) had lost 63-37 and 62-35. Second-year Clovers coach Karl Turk spoke on how even in the one point loss, this game against the Mounties was a bright spot for his team.

“We’ve battled through a week’s worth of adversity and tonight’s pre-game message to the guys was let’s win eight four minute wars,” Turk said. “We played the game in four-minute spurts and I was very happy with our effort and the cohesion we showed.  That’s the biggest piece for us to be successful and I think our mental was a lot better than the first two games.”

Beck did his best to try and single handily keep the Clovers in the game. The 6’4 athletic senior scored a game-high 20 points and grabbed 16 rebounds to go along with a handful of blocked shots.

“Noah is a player who was challenged to be the guy,” Turk said of Beck. “Last year against Riverton Parke, Derron Hazzard who averaged like 26 a game, Noah was the best player on the floor in that game and this summer and the fall he’s really worked at becoming our guy. He’s the guy who in the locker room is talking and motivating everyone. He’s been the guy holding himself and everyone accountable and we need a player like Noah to do just that.”

For the game Southmont (2-0) shot 14-41 (34%) from the floor and just 3-14 (21%) from three in the win. The shooting struggles carried over to the foul line where they made just 4-10 attempts. South did rebound very well grabbing 40 rebounds while turning the ball over 13 times.

Cloverdale shot 14-53 (26%) from the field in the loss and 4-24 (16.7%) from three and just 2-8 from the free-throw line. They grabbed 34 rebounds and turned the ball over nine times.

After the first two games of the season, Byrum put a stamp of approval on not just his team but the entire program for a successful opening week.

“Our entire program through two games is 6-0 so that’s something we all should be very proud of,” he said. “Our hard work has paid off in these first two games and now it’s about getting better this week.”

Southmont will be off until Friday when they entertain Sagamore Conference foe Danville in a girl/boy double-header back at home.

Cloverdale will travel to Indiana Creek next Friday.


Southmont 35, Cloverdale 34

Score By Quarter

SM 12 6 11 6 ­— 35

CLV 7 6 9 12 — 34

Southmont (2-0): FG-FGA FT-FTA PTS: Evan Watson 1-4 0-0 3, Vince Reimondo 3-10 1-4 9, Austin Foley 0-0 0-0 0, Kyler McCandless 2-5 0-0 4, Lucas Oppy 0-0 0-0 0, Hayden Hess 2-10 1-2 5, Aaron McMasters 1-2 0-0 2, Carter Hubble 5-10 3-4 12; Totals 14-41 4-10 35

Cloverdale (0-3): Tayt Jackson 1-6 0-0 3, Houston Jobe 3-12 0-0 7, Eli Kelly 1-6 0-0 2, Noah Betz 8-23 2-8 20, Scottie McGuire 1-5 0-0 2, Levin Johnson 0-1 0-0 0; Totals 14-53 2-8 34

3-Point Shooting: Southmont 3-14 (Reimondo 2-6, Watson 1-4, Hess 0-3); Cloverdale 4-24 (Betz 2-10, Jobe 1-8, Jackson 1-2, McGuire 0-3)

Rebounds: Southmont 40 (Hubble 8, Foley 7, McCandless 5, Hess 5, Oppy 5); Cloverdale 34 (Betz 16, Kelly 7)

Turnovers: Southmont 13, Cloverdale 9