"That's the tale of our team so far," Eagles head coach Brian Gardner said. "We have a good half and a bad half and you have to play four quarters to win a game. I think right now for them, they know they want it but they have to understand how to get it. And right now they don't know it yet because they've not been there."
The first half had the Eagles in the drivers seat and headed to its first victory of the season.
South Putnam started the game slowly and faced a two-point deficit at the end of the first quarter 17-15.
In the second quarter, Coner Frame and Noah Boswell caught fire. They combined for 13 points and it was Frame's two free throws with 1:36 on the clock that send the Eagles to the locker room with a 30-29 half time lead.
The Eagles out scored the Sparkplugs 12-4 at the line and held scoring threat Kyle Linville to only nine first half points.
In the second half, the Eagles were a completely different team.
Speedway hit the Eagles with a full court press and left south Putnam reeling for the rest of the game. The press resulted in turnover, which the Sparkplugs eagerly turned into points.
"We panicked a little bit. Instead of taking that storm and being calm about it, the storm hit us and we let the storm keep raining on us," Gardner commented. "Instead of attacking their pressure, we went back on our heels instead of attacking. When we did attack we got lay-ups.
When we turn the ball over 20 times it hurts us.
South Putnam was held to 15 points in the second half while allowing Speedway's Linville to go off for 17 points in the half and 26 for the game.
The Eagles are still in search of their first win of the season and Gardner thinks his squad is just on the cusp.
"It's very frustrating. We had the game where we needed it to be and if we take care of the basketball and do fundamental things, we put ourselves in a great position," Gardner said. "I thought we played hard against them but we still have work we have to get done."
Noah Boswell led the Eagles with 14 points, while Conor Frame adding 11.
The Eagles will host the South Putnam Tournament Dec. 18.
At South Putnam
Speedway 17 12 12 18 --59
South Putnam 15 15 5 10 -- 45
Speedway -- Linville 26, Hubbard 11, Avance 5, Duman 4, Eggert 4, Prior 4, Jackson 3, Daghe 2. Totals: FG 20-56 FT 16-20 TP 59.
South Putnam -- Boswell 14, Frame 11, Masters 8, Sebanc 5, Welty 5, Chestnut 2. Totals: FG 15-32 FT 13-18 TP 45.
3pt. FG -- Speedway 3 (Linville, Jackson, Hubbard), South Putnam (Welty)
Next game -- The Eagles will host the South Putnam Tournament Dec. 18.