Quickness was something Gardner spoke at length about. The Eagles seems a step behind the Knights all evening and that translated into a rough outing. Northview's ability to head off the passing lanes and create turnovers in the backcourt was significant in building its 25-9 lead in the first quarter.
"When they're quick and they play hard and get in the passing lanes, you've got to be really strong with the ball. When they get into you have to be more physically sound. Tonight their quickness really hurt us," Gardner said.
In the opening minutes of the game, the Eagles were point-for-point with the Knights but a three-pointer from Jered Timm opened the floodgates as Northview went on a 16-0 run in the latter part of the first.
The Eagles recorded nine points in the second quarter as well and managed to cool the Knights' hot hand. Northview shot a blistering 61 percent in the first half to extend its lead to 43-18 at the half.
After the break, the eagles managed to break into the double-digit column, scoring 13 in the third. Cameron Chestnut led the Eagles with six points in the quarter, with Noah Boswell adding four.
Gardner saw a shift in his post players that impressed him. Their ability to see the defense, adapt and attack is a factor Gardner hopes to utilize in the future.
"Our post had to adapt in the middle of the game, which is something they have had to do," Gardner said. "Our guards at times we able to get them the ball and in the second half I thought we did a good job of attacking the rim. When you attack the rim, I don't care who you are, that puts the defense on their heels."
In the final stanza, the Eagles were outscored by a mere two points and when they went head-to-head with what Gardner believes to be Northview's team for next season, the Eagles came out on top.
"In the second half it was a 33-27 game and if you look at when they put in next year's team, we beat them. For me, that was a positive for us," he said.
The Eagles will travel to North Putnam for a varsity only game beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday.
At South Putnam
Northview 25 18 17 16 -- 76
South Putnam 9 9 13 14 -- 45
Northview -- Timm 8 2-2 23, Akers 5 0-0 14, Whitman 4 5-6 13, Lancaster 2 3-4 7, Coltharp 2 1-4 5, Kirby 2 0-0 4, Robertson 1 1-1 3, Bradshaw 1 0-0 3, White 1 0-0 2. Totals: 27-51 FG 15-22 FT 76 TP.
South Putnam -- Boswell 6 4-7 17, Chestnut 3 4-4 10, Frame 2 3-3 7, Masters 2 1-2 5, Cash 2 0-0 4, #10 1 0-0 2. Totals: 17-49 FG 12-16 FT 45 TP.
Next game -- The Eagles will travel to North Putnam for a varsity-only game beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday.