Greencastle continues homecourt mastery with 55-40 win over South Putnam

Friday, February 9, 2018
Greencastle's Colin York goes up to shoot over South Putnam defender Kain Gregory.
Banner Graphic/JOEY BENNETT

The Greencastle Tiger Cubs sure like playing in McAnally Center. They beat the South Putnam Eagles 55-40 in the second semifinal game of the Putnam County Classic on Thursday night.

Greencastle improved to 13-5 with a 9-1 record on its home court. The Cubs used the dribble drive to perfection and worked their offense to shoot 9-of-17 from three-point land and overall a 53 percent shooting night from the field. That allows the Cubs to play for the county title and the Putnam County Bucket tonight.

Greencastle will take on two-time defending champion Cloverdale, which defeated North Putnam in the opener on Thursday.

The Cubs dictated the pace and style of the game on both ends of the floor. Greencastle used its defensive pressure in the first half to establish a lead, then extended it further by using an efficient offense in the second half.

South had its only lead of the game at the outset. Allen Plunkett hit a trey to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead, but the Cubs went on an 11-0 run and finished the first quarter with a 13-6 lead. Colin York led the Cubs with seven points in the first quarter, but also had four people in the score sheet.

“The more balanced we are the better we are. We’ve really got that going, that takes a lot pressure off of Colin (York). If your leading scorer struggles, not that Colin did tonight, we can be tough to defend,” Greencastle head coach Bryce Rector said.

Greencastle continued its balance in the second period with five players putting points in the scorebook. The Cubs made their mark in the first half defensively though.

The Eagles turned the ball over nine times in the first half. They also only hit 5-of-16 from the floor, all from behind the arc.

“Defensively is what spurred us tonight. We did a nice job of protecting the paint. They had 16 points in the first half and 15 of them were from three,” Rector said.

Plunkett and Dalton Scott kept the Eagles in the game. Plunkett had nine of his team-high 20 points in the half, while Scott had six. The Eagles trailed 24-16 at the intermission.

“We didn’t get anything in the paint,” South Putnam head coach Greg Dean said. “In the first half it wasn’t anything. The second half was a little better, but we have to do a better job of getting the ball inside.”

The third quarter saw the Tiger Cubs begin to get in the flow offensively. Greencastle shot 5-of-9 from the field and got to the free throw line to hit 5-of-6 from the stripe.

The Cubs were able to extend their lead to 41-26 heading into the final stanza. Benton Parmley and York scored six points apiece in the quarter. Scott tried to keep the Eagles in the game as he scored six of his own.

The Eagles made a small run to begin the fourth period. South scored the first six points of the quarter. Scott had a rebound bucket, Plunkett knocked down a free throw then a three-pointer with 6:43 left in the game.

The Eagles had the lead down under double digits at 41-32, but the Cubs ripped off nine straight on two Parmley treys and one by York to push the lead up to 18 at 50-32 and pretty much sealed the game.

“We gave up good looks at threes. We got broken down in the middle. When that happens, it opens up a lot for them,” Dean said.

South Putnam was never able to get closer than the final margin of 55-40 the rest of the game.

The Eagles were able to shoot it well in the quarter with 4-of-7 from the field, but the Cubs were better. They went 4-of-5, including 3-of-3 from behind the arc. They also hit 8-of-10 free throws in the second half. South wasn’t able to get the needed to make a comeback.

“It (the good shooting) says a lot about our guys and the way they practice. They are getting up a lot of shots and working on their fundamentals,” Rector said.

South was led by Plunkett with 20 points and Scott with 17 and that duo accounted for 37 of the Eagles’ 40 points.

York led all scorers with 21 points and Benton Parmley went for 18. Parmley scored all of his points from deep. The freshman hit six-of-nine from behind the arc.

The Cubs won the rebounding battle 21-18 and the turnover battle, 10-7. There were not a lot of turnovers in the game, but the Cubs forced nine of the 10 Eagle turnovers in the first half. That was key for them, according to Rector.

“We did that tonight by staying within our system defensively. We were in the right spots and got a lot tips and steals early.”

While the Cubs will play for the title, the Eagles will be in the consolation game.

“We have got to pick ourselves up off the mat and play tomorrow night. North is disappointed, like we are, to play in the first game, but we have be ready to play,” Dean said.

The Eagles will open the second night of the tournament against the North Putnam Cougars. The consolation game starts at 6 p.m., followed by the championship .

GREENCASTLE (55) – A.York 0-2 0-0 0, Whitaker 0-2 2-2 2, Parmley 3-7 0-0 6, Hutcheson 6-11 0-0 12, Bollman 1-6 1-2 3, Wood 0-0 0-0 0, C.York 6-9 2-6 14, Baxter 0-0 0-0 0, Sutherlin 0-0 0-0 0, Plew 0-0 0-0 0, Alexander 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 17-32 FG, 12-16 FT, 55 TP.

SOUTH PUTNAM (40) – Fanning 0-4 1-2 1, Plunkett 7-13 2-8 20, Watson 0-2 0-0 0, Scott 6-12 2-2 17, Gregory 0-1 0-0 0, Lesko 0-0 0-0 0, Schnepp 0-0 0-0 0, Heavin 0-0 0-0 0, VanSickle 0-0 2-2 2, Blaydes 0-0 0-0 0, Teipen 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 13-32 FG, 7-14 FT, 40 TP.

Greencastle 13 11 17 14 — 55

South Putnam 6 10 10 14 — 40

3-Point Shooting — GHS 9-17 (York 2-5, Whitaker 1-3, Parmley 6-9) SP 7-22 (Fanning 0-4, Plunkett 4-9, Watson 0-1, Scott 3-8). Rebounds – GHS 21 (C. York 3, Whitaker 4, Hutcheson 2, Bollman 11) SP – 18 (Fanning 1, Plunkett 5, Watson 2, Scott 3, Gregory 1, Lesko 1) FG Pct. – GHS 53,1, SP 40.6. FT Pct. – GHS 75.0, SP 50.0. Turnovers GHS 7, SP 10.

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