Owen Valley survives sluggish offensive game

Saturday, January 27, 2018

The South Putnam Eagles hosted the Owen Valley Patriots in the Western Indiana Conference crossover game on Friday night in boys’ basketball.

The two teams playing for 9th/10th place both struggled to score, but the Patriots hit from three-point range, while the Eagles couldn’t and defeated the hosts 47-35.

The Eagles fell to 6-10 on the season, while the Patriots improved to 6-9.

The great Tony Hinkle once said, “The team that puts the ball in the basket the most times wins.”

Neither team did a good job of that on this night. Both teams shot under 40 percent from the field, but the Patriots were able to knock down shots in the third quarter from 3-point land by hitting 5-of-10 in the period and 9-of-23 on the game. That spelled the difference in the game.

“We talked all week long about how they were going to shoot the three and we needed to close out aggressively. You’ve got to make them put it on the floor after they catch it. We didn’t do a great job of that tonight,” South Putnam head coach Greg Dean said.

The Eagles forced the Patriots into turnovers in their first three possessions and jumped out to a 5-0 lead and led 12-10 at the end of the first quarter. Dalton Scott nailed a pair of corner threes to pace South.

The second quarter was similar to the first, only with even poorer shooting as neither team was able to score in double digits and the score was tied at 17 heading to the break. Scott hit his third trey of the game in the quarter.

“We have got to keep searching for ways to put the ball in the basket,” Dean said.

Owen Valley found the range in the third quarter. The Patriots were able to hit five 3-pointers and take the lead.

Freshman Stephen Atkinson nailed three from behind the arc as he scored nine of his game-high 23 points in the quarter. Allen Plunkett tried to keep the Eagles in the game with 11 points during the stanza, but the Patriots were able to gain a 36-31 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

Owen Valley was able to extend the lead to 41-33 with 4:23 left in the game. The score would remain the same for over three minutes as neither team could score. The Patriots missed the front end of three straight one and bonus situations, but the Eagles couldn’t capitalize in that stretch. Finally in the final 1:19, the Patriots were able to hit some to convert some free throws to put the game away and set the final margin at 47-35.

“We are not hitting the three. We shot something like 22 percent. We didn’t get the ball inside in the second half, particularly to the man in the middle against that zone,” Dean said.

Owen Valley was led by Atkinson’s 23 points and Keaton Richardson had 15 for the Patriots. The Eagles were led by Plunkett with 20 points and Scott with 11.

“It was a good crowd, a fun environment for homecoming. We wish we could have given them a win,” Dean said.

The Eagles will host Lighthouse Christian Saturday (tonight) as they try and get back on track.

OWEN VALLEY (47) – Herrington 1-3 0-2 2, Wood 1-6 0-0 2, Richardson 4-10 3-4 15, Polich 0-4 5-6 5, Atkinson 9-14 0-1 23, Mauder 0-0 0-0 0, Marsh 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 15-38 FG, 8-13 FT, 47 TP.

SOUTH PUTNAM (35) – Fanning 0-3 0-0 0, Arnold 1-1 1-2 3, Watson 0-2 0-0 0, Plunkett 9-15 2-4 20, Scott 3-9 2-2 11, Schnepp 0-4 0-1 0, Gregory 0-1 0-0 0, Lesko 0-0 1-2 1. Totals 13-35 FG, 6-11 FT, 35 TP.

Owen Valley 10 7 19 11 — 47

South Putnam 12 5 14 4 – 35

3-point shooting – OV 9-24 (Herrington 0-1, Wood 0-5, Richardson 4-8, Polich 0-3, Atkinson 5-7), SP 3-14 (Fanning 0-1, Watson 0-1, Plunkett 0-5, Scott 3-6, Schnepp 0-1). Rebounds – OV 26 (Herrington 2, Wood 4, Richardson 3, Polich 9, Atkinson 4, Mauder 1, Marsh 3) SP – 27 (Fanning 1, Arnold 4, Watson 1, Plunkett 9, Schnepp 4, Gregory 6) FG Pct. – OV 39.5, SP 37.1. FT Pct. – OV 61.5, SP 54,5. Turnovers – OV 8, SP 13.

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