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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Eagles claim county title, redeem last year's final loss

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The 2012 Putnam County Classic champions South Putnam. The players (front, from left) Trevor Long (fr.), Klayton Vittetow (jr.), Derrick Mitchell (jr.), Justin Bumgardner (sr.), Jimmy Rutter (fr.), (second row, from left) Trey Moore (jr.), Kinser Franklin (sr.), Ryan Chestnut (sr.), Logan Pell (sr.), Sawyer Arnold (jr.) and Codey Snow (sr.). [Order this photo]
The South Putnam boys' basketball team used its height (and experience) to its advantage on Saturday, claiming the 2012 Putnam County Championship with a 53-44 win against North Putnam.

It's the Eagles' first PCC win since 2008, allowing the club to avenge last year's championship game loss to Greencastle.

"This goes back a year ago," South Putnam coach Troy Burgess said. "I think this means a lot to the kids that graduated last year -- my seniors that graduated.

"We came in last year and got this thing off and running, and those guys kind of set the tone and got things going in the right direction."

Senior forward Justin Bumgardner led the charge for the Eagles, pulling down a game-high 16 rebounds while adding 15 points.

"He had a good weekend for us, offensively, on the boards, everything," Burgess said. "We feel like our strength right now is our inside, our post-presence. When we get the ball inside to them and finish, we can be pretty good."

The Eagles' penetration led to early foul trouble for the NPHS bigs, seniors Jameson Brewer and Jake Haste.

Each picked up his third foul before halftime, forcing the Cougars to go with a small-ball lineup that couldn't withstand the Eagles attack.

As a team, SPHS out-rebounded NPHS 46-32.

"We got ourselves into trouble in the first half with three fouls on both of those guys," NPHS coach Nathan Martindale said. "That kind of puts us behind the eight-ball."

The Eagles led by only two, 14-12, after the first quarter despite holding NPHS to just 4-19 shooting.

The quickness of the Cougar guards helped force five turnovers in the period.

"That's what we can do," Martindale said, "because we're quick, we're athletic."

The Eagles figured out the press and began attacking inside during the second quarter.

Brewer picked up an early third foul, leaving Haste to carry the load inside.

NPHS senior Jameson Brewer blocks a lay-up attempt from SPHS junior Trey Moore into the seats in the first quarter of the 2012 Putnam County Championship final.
(Banner Graphic/GRANT WIEMAN) [Order this photo]
With three minutes remaining before halftime, SPHS senior Ryan Chestnut snuck underneath him and pulled in an offensive rebound. Haste was called for a push in the back. He then picked up a technical foul, his third personal, and was sent to the bench.

With Haste out, the Eagles completed the quarter on a seven-nothing run and took a 25-17 lead into halftime.

"We had to make a decision there to keep us with a little bit more athleticism," Martindale said. "Coy (Flynn, who started the second half) has some good athleticism, he's quick. We thought we could get after them just a little bit there and bring Jake off the bench (in the second half)."

The Eagles continued to slowly pull away in the third quarter. Senior Logan Pell opened the scoring with a three-pointer, and Bumgardner scored eight points in the period on four-of-five shooting.

Brewer began heating up as well, knocking down a pair of threes in the quarter. He finished with a game-high 19 points.

"We don't mind the three point shot, but we'd also like to see him get toward the bucket," Martindale said. "That's part of what we talked about in the locker room. We've got to take more shots in the paint. We can't be banking on the three-point shot all the time, because that's going to get us hurt."

SPHS led 38-27 after three, and the fouls continued piling up for the Cougars.

The only thing keeping NPHS in the game was the Eagles poor foul shooting (seven-of-14 in the fourth), but the Cougars simply couldn't mount enough offense to respond.

"I thought (South Put) played a good game, but this one is on us," Martindale said. "Offensively, we just did not do a good job with shot selection; with understanding what's a good shot and what's a bad shot. We forced way too much from the outside."

Brewer added a couple more late threes, but by then it was too late for a comeback.

It's still early in the season, but both coaches said their teams will use the tournament results to grow and move forward.

"When you win the county, you put the target on your back," Burgess said. "That's OK, we'll take that. But you can't rest. You've got to continue to work."

Martindale had firmer words for his squad.

"Our guys, they've got to understand where we need to go," Martindale said. "With this team, we've learned from it, we're young in terms of experience and we'll be better next week."

The Eagles are back in action on Friday when they open the West Central Conference schedule against Cascade at 7:30 p.m.

North Putnam hosts Crawfordsville on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

At Greencastle
Putnam County Classic -- Championship game
South Putnam -- 14 11 13 15 -- 53
North Putnam -- 12 5 10 17 -- 44

Individual scoring
South Putnam: Bumgardner 6-12, 3-7, 15; Moore 4-8, 4-6, 12; Pell 3-5, 0-0, 8; Franklin 3-8, 0-0, 8; Arnold 1-3, 3-4, 6; Chestnut 2-6, 1-4, 5; Vittetow 0-1, 0-0, 0; Long 0-0, 0-0, 0.
North Putnam: Brewer 7-17, 2-2, 19; Green 4-12, 0-0, 10; Nauert 2-15, 0-0, 5; Hazelgrove 1-6, 2-2, 4; Haste 1-3, 0-0, 2; Flynn 1-6, 0-0, 2; Herrmann 1-3, 0-0, 2.

Team scoring
S: 19-42, 11-22, 53.
N: 16-64, 4-4, 44.

Rebounds (Offensive)
S: 46 (6)
N: 32 (11)

Three-point shooting
S: 5-7
N: 8-29

S: 17
N: 8

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