Boys Basketball

Ward and Brewer lead Mounties past sectional foe

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NEW MARKET — After a heart-breaking 52-50 loss to Seeger on Friday night, Southmont boys basketball was quickly back in action at home as they hosted sectional foe Riverton Parke. A season ago the Mounties ended the Panthers season in the Class 2A Sectional 44 Tournament so the Panthers came seeking revenge. In the first half it proved to be high-scoring affair as the visitors took a 33-32 lead into halftime. But as they have for most of the season, South came out of the locker room the better of the two teams and held the Panthers to just 18 points second half points, including five in the third quarter, as they earned a 59-51 win.

In the first half Riverton Parke shot 12-24 from the floor and 4-9 from three. They ended the game shooting just 6-20 (30%) from behind the arc and 18-45 (40&) from the floor.

“It’s kind of a double-edged sword to where I love how the listened to what we wanted to adjust at halftime, but most of it was stuff we talked about before the game,” Southmont coach Jake Turner said. “We have to be more focused in our walk-through and pre-game stuff so we’re not putting ourselves in position to where we have to make these adjustments or remind them about what we talked about.”
This game was a lot more competitive than the sectional game a season ago where the Mounties dominated the Panthers 67-23. Turner made sure to give praise to the Panthers as he said they’re a much different team than a season ago.

“They’ve improved immensely from last year and it was they didn’t make it easy on us tonight,” he said. “That’s a team we could see again so hopefully our guys know that our sectional is going to be tough and there’s no one that we can overlook.”

The duo of Trip Ward and EJ Brewer led the way offensively for the Mounties as Ward had one of the best games of his career scoring 23 points and drilling five threes. Brewer also added his best offensive output of the season scoring 17 points and grabbing seven rebounds. Carson Chadd added 11 points and 11 rebounds to end with a double-double. Kyler McCandless scored four, Hayden Hess three, and Lucas Oppy one.

“People may not see it, but we have depth on this team,” Turner said. “All of guys made unselfish passes tonight and EJ finished at the rim as well as he has all season and he rebounded really well too as did everyone. It’s good for Trip to see the ball go through the net because he’s not just a great shooter, he defends well and does a lot of things well. It’s always good to have depth and guys who accept their roles. If we can put together a full 32 minutes, I think we can compete with anyone.”

The Mounties shot 23-43 (53%) from the field and 8-17 (47%) from the free-throw line but did go 5-6 from the charity stripe in the second half.

Riverton Parke was led in scoring by Matthew Mullins who ended with 23 points. Coming into the game he only averaged seven a game. Derron Hazzard scored 13 while Pierson Robins added 12.

The loss for the Panthers sees their record fall to 5-8 on the season while the win for the Mounties sees their record now at 9-3 on the year.

It’ll be a big week for the Mounties as on Friday they’ll host Covington before seeing county rival Crawfordsville yet again in a girl/boy double-header on Saturday night with the county title on the line.

“There’s no easy games coming up for us,” Turner said. “Normally you’re big game of the week is on Friday night, but that’s not the case for us this week. We’ll give our attention first to Covington then we know that Crawfordsville game will be fun. It always is.”

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