Outrebounded, Greencastle was unable to regain a half-time lead and fell to the Rockville boys 50-47 in Friday night action at McAnally Center.
"We didn't lose it at the end," Tiger Cubs coach Troy Greenlee said. "We lost it the whole game by not rebounding. We've got to hold them to one shot per possession."
But led by 6-foot-7 forward R.J. Mahurin, the Rockville Rox pulled down several missed shots and scored most of their points on second and third attempts.
"We were worried coming to Greencastle," Rockville coach Dave Mahurin said after the contest. "We'd scouted them Tuesday night."
Rockville knew they were in for a tough contest, only their fourth of the season, and Mahurin said the level of competition was a step up for the Rox. But after taking over in the third quarter, and leading through the fourth, Rockville faced a valiant run by Greencastle that put the Tiger Cubs within two points with 11 seconds left.
"We caved in the last two minutes," Mahurin said. "We folded like a cheap tent."
The game started with a 3-pointer by Tiger Cub Kendall Faust, followed by a 3-pointer by fellow senior Brennan Burks. Rockville then used its press defense, but was unsuccessful in stopping a lay-in by Ashton Marshall, and another long shot by Faust.
Greencastle got into foul trouble early, racking up seven in the first quarter, and sending Mahurin to the line where he was 4-of-5. He would end up 6-of-9 in free throw on the evening, and adding another 11 points from the field.
In the second quarter, it was all Burks for Greencastle as he sank 10 points total, but was the Tiger Cubs' only scorer for the period. Greencastle held Rockville to just six points, ending the half with a 22-19 score.
"In the second half, we wanted R.J. low, so we put (Aaron) Bridge in to be aggressive," coach Mahurin said.
That took some of the pressure off the Rox's star forward, and allowed Rockville to outscore Greencastle 16-7 in the third quarter.
With one minute left in the fourth quarter, Rockville led 49-40. Faust sank a 3-pointer with 39.6 seconds left on the clock. The teams exchanged a couple of misses, then Burks was fouled by Bridge. Hitting both his free shots took Greencastle to within four points, and Greencastle then recovered the ball and saw Drew Evens score underneath to take the score to 49-47.
As Rockville tried to move the ball up the court with 11 seconds on the clock, Evens fouled Josh Reed to send him to the line. A hit and a miss took Rockville up by three points. A missedl three-pointer by Burks failed to tie the game.
For the evening, Faust led Tiger Cub scoring with one field goal, five 3-pointers, and 2-of-4 free throws for 19 points. Burks scored three 2-pointers, two 3-pointers, and was 6-of-7 for 18 points. Both Marshall and Austin Miller added four points, and Evens added two for Greencastle.
Greencastle next plays Brown County at home on Friday, Dec. 28.
In junior varsity action. Greencastle won the match-up 56-40. Scoring for Greencastle were Keith Carr with 12, Kyle Harlan with 11, Jordan Hickam with 7, Graham Shuee with 5, Spencer Moore with 6, Damir Tarabar with 4 and Griffin Moore with 11.
Score by quarter
Greencastle, 12-10-7-18 -- 47
Rockville, 13-6-16-15 -- 50