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Monday, May 2, 2016

Greencastle stifles Cloverdale

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Greencastle senior Rayleigh Amis attempts a jump shot from the corner over Cloverdale's Bristy Skiles in the team's 2012 Putnam County Tournament semifinal match-up. Greencastle won the game, 36-25. [Order this photo]
The Greencastle girls' basketball team topped Cloverdale in the second semifinal of the 2012 Putnam County Tournament on Friday, utilizing steady defense and an energetic bench to secure the 36-25 win.

Sophomore Jessica Lenihan led the Tiger Cubs with 12 points.

Greencastle head coach Bradley Key said the key to scoring on the inside against Cloverdale's zone defense was the passing of his senior guard.

"Rayleigh Amis did an outstanding job of looking for (Lenihan)," Key said. "I thought Ray played a great game. A lot of Jessica's 12 came because Rayleigh gave her good feeds."

Greencastle mixed up its starting lineup and was active with substitutions. The fresh legs showed up in the fourth quarter when the Tiger Cubs closed the game with a 13-5 run.

Cloverdale began the game with an early 4-0 lead but they were held scoreless for the rest of the quarter.

Greencastle stretched a 12-0 run between quarters and took a 17-11 advantage into halftime.

The Clovers played tough defense and dominated the glass, but they couldn't make a shot -- 4-for-19 in the first half -- and they turned the ball over nine times.

"I couldn't say enough for the girls' effort tonight. It's been a while since we played a quality team and just stuck in it," Cloverdale head coach Matthew Langdon said. "To only score 25 points and to be right into the middle of a game going into the fourth quarter shows how well the girls committed to the defense."

The Clovers outscored Greencastle in the third quarter, 9-6, and allowed only 2-of-12 shooting.

Turnovers again doomed the team in the fourth.

Greencastle switched from its traditional 2-3 zone to a man-to-man and held the Clovers without a field goal for the last six minutes.

"The 2-3 zone wasn't quite as active as we normally have it," Keys said. "We felt like (with the man-to-man) we were getting some touches and some pressure and we were doing a good job of the help side defense."

The Tiger Cubs will get another chance to work on their defense tonight.

Greencastle advanced to the county tournament final to face South Putnam, which defeated North Putnam on Friday.

Although the main focus this early in the season is to improve, Key said getting a win on Saturday would be big for his club.

"We'd like to come out and get one for Ray and Jessi, our two seniors," he said. "Last year we didn't win it and we felt terrible for the seniors."

Cloverdale squares off with North Putnam in the consolation final, which tips at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at South Putnam High School.

"It would be huge for us to come out here and get a county win that we haven't gotten in a while," Langdon said. "I think it's important to us. I think the county is wide open this year. It's important for us to come out tomorrow and prove that we're not here to just play one good game."

At South Putnam

Greencastle 7 10 6 13 -- 36

Cloverdale 4 7 9 5 -- 25

Individual scorers

Greencastle -- Lenihan 12; Taylor 9; Amis 7; Basile 3; Covert 3; Smiley 2; Earl 2

Cloverdale -- Nally 9; Gruener 7; Skiles 5; Shrum 2; Wellington 2

Team shooting

Greencastle --12/37 (3/10), 9/15, 36

Cloverdale --10/36 (1/8), 4/9, 25