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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Eagles still searching for a win after 54-41 loss

Saturday, January 22, 2011

GREENCASTLE --South Putnam played a strong second half against Monrovia, an encouraging two quarters in a 54-41 defeat in a West Central Conference boys basketball game on the Eagles' court.

South Putnam (0-12, 0-3 WCC) out-scored the Bulldogs (6-5, 4-0 WCC) 26-22 in the second half. It was something to build upon.

"I think we played really well in the second half," Eagles' coach Micah Elliott said. "We cut down their lead to 10. That was a big positive. We could have folded. We showed a lot of character.

"We think we're going to peak at the right time, at the end of the year. The last four games we've played we've been competitive with everyone."

South Putnam was within 10 late in the first half, too, but Grant Benfiel had two steals and scored seven straight points in the final 40 seconds to put Monrovia on top, 32-15.

"We had 15 turnovers in the first half and a lot them led to (Monrovia) points," Elliott said. "Benefiel turned the game around. That 7-0 run took us from 10 down to 17."

Benefiel, a 6-foot forward with tremendous speed and quickness and above average jumping ability, stole a pass and turned it into a conventional three-point play to give Monrovia a 28-15 advantage.

Benefiel stole the in-bounds pass and scored. He was fouled and the officials ruled it was after the shot, which put him at the free throw line for a one-and-one with 2.4 seconds left in the half. Benefiel made both, scoring four points on one possession raising his total to 18. He finished with 23.

South Putnam rallied in the third quarter with a 12-0 run to trail, 39-29.

Freshman Sawyer Arnold started it with a basket. Cory Stanton scored inside and Dean Varvel had a three-point play. Sawyer Arnold knocked down a three-pointer and Brayden Freeman netted a 15-foot jumper.

Monrovia led 41-30 entering the fourth period. Stanton's free throw reduced the Eagles' deficit to 10, but they couldn't get any closer.

Elliott liked some things we saw. There were some things he didn't like, too.

"They took us out of our offense and we did just as good a job of taking them out of theirs," Elliott said. "We're a good defensive team. We had some mental lapses, but they're correctable mental lapses."

Freeman, a 5-foot-10 senior guard, led the Eagles with 11 points. Sawyer Arnold scored 10 on 4-of-7 field goals including 2-of-5 three-pointers. Stanton had a game-high eight rebounds, a department the Eagles won, 33-30.

Monrovia plays at Tri-West tonight starting at 7:30.

At South Putnam

Monrovia 13 19 9 13 -- 54

South Putnam 8 715 11 -- 41

MONROVIA (6-5, 4-0 WCC)

Benefiel 7-15 6-7 23, Sichting 2-3 2-2 6, Bolton 2-4 0-0 5, Michel 2-7 0-0 4, McCl;eerey 3-9 6-7 14, Fite 1-3 0-2 2, Gray 0-2 0-0 0, Sampson 0-0 0-0 0, Dunbar 0-1 0-0 0, Welty 0-0 0-0 0, Totals 17-44 14-18 54.

SOUTH PUTNAM (0-12, 0-3 WCC)

Hammond 0-5 0-0 0, Bumgardner 2-3 3-4 7, Se. Arnold 0-1 0-2 0, Freeman 5-14 0-2 11, Varvel 3-9 1-1 7, Stanton 2-6 2-5 6, Sa. Arnold 4-7 0-0 10, Totals 16-45 0-0 41.

3-point field goals: M 6-19 (Benefiel 3-7, McCleerey 2-7, Bolton 1-3, Gray 0-2), SP 3-12 (Sa. Arnold 2-5, Freeman 1-5), Hammond 0-2). Rebounds: M 30 (Benefiel 6, McCleerey 5), SP 33 (Stanton 8. Se. Arnold 6). Turnovers: M 16, SP 18. Total fouls: M 14, SP 16. Fouled out: None.