TERRE HAUTE -- Mitch Lancaster could not have been prouder of a high school basketball team after a loss than he was Friday night.
As the Northview Knights were preparing to take the floor without their leading scorer, Logan Whitman, for the first time in four years, Coach Lancaster asked one thing.
"I told them one thing, I wanted a great effort. I said, 'We have great
community support and our people really believe in us. We can't let
them down by coming out of here flat and using the fact Logan is hurt as
an excuse. We have to give a great effort.' And I thought our effort was
great," Lancaster said.
With Whitman, and his 26 points per game average, nursing the head
injury received at Rockville last Saturday on the Northview bench, the
Knights came through was a great effort in a 65-59 loss to the host Terre
Haute South Braves.
"We're really greatly satisfied with our effort. We're disappointed we
didn't get the win, because we fought hard. If we get a couple of calls
at the end....," Lancaster said. Zach Keyes scored a game-high 25 points to pace Northview and Josh Timm poured in 22 points. "They knew they had to step up and they did. All
of our kids had to step up," Lancaster said.
"I think all of our kids had to step up. [The players] had to handle
[the ball] in different positions and they had to do things -- handling the ball and shooting the ball and running sets they don't normally run -- in different positions," Lancaster pointed out.
Northview [9-3] could not overcome Terre Haute South's inside-outside attack. Armon Bassett, playing his first game since becoming academically eligible, paced the Braves with 23 points, including three 3-point buckets, followed by 6-foot-6, 240-pound center Jeremy Lock with 19 points and 12 rebounds.
But it was South's Terrence Littlefield, with 11 points, who hurt Northview most. With the score tied 54-54, Littlefield hit a 3-pointer from the baseline that put the Braves ahead for good with 2:17 to play.
"That's a big three. [Littlefield] was probably the guy we wanted shooting out of all [of the players] on their team," Lancaster said.
The final margin, six points, was the largest lead either team held.
Keyes and Timm combined for three 3-pointers to get Northview out of the gate to a fast 9-4 start. Bassett put South on top for the first time, 16-15, with 2:10 left in the first period.
South led 21-20 going into the second quarter. Northview's Tyler Akers stole the ball and took it the length of the court for a layup and 26-26 tie at the 4:51 mark. A 3-pointer by Timm and a put back by promising 6-foot-7 sophomore Nick Wells gave the Knights a 31-28 halftime lead.
Timm, who scored nine points in the third period, opened the second half with a driving layup, giving Northview a 33-28 lead. Timm forced up a shot just before the buzzer and Aker tipped it in, giving Northview a 47-46 lead going into the final eight minutes.
Up to the 2:17 mark of the fourth quarter, neither team led by more than two points. Keyes tied the game for the last time, 54-54, with 2:39 to play.
Keyes hit a 3-pointer from beyond the NBA length to bring the Knights within two, 59-57, with 50 seconds to play. But the Braves hit 4-of-5 free throws in the closing seconds.
Northview shot 48 percent (22-46) from the floor, including 45 percent (9-20) from 3-point range. South hit 55 percent (22-40) from the floor, 61 percent (8-13) treyland, while winning it second straight game.
After the contest, Whitman said he would not play in Northview's home game Saturday against Indianapolis Broad Ripple, but felt he would be ready for next week's WIC contest with South Vermillion.
Northview Athletic Director Charlie Jackson announced that Saturday's junior varsity game with Broad Ripple will start at 6 p.m.
Northview (59) -- Keyes 9-16 2-3 25, Akers 3-6 1-2 7, Hoover 0-0 1-2 1, Timm 8-20 2-2 22, Hughes 0-1 0-0 0, Greenwood 0-0 0-0 0, Brand 0-1 0-0 0, Wells 2-2 0-2 4. Totals FG 22-46, FT 6-11, TP 59.
Terre Haute south (65) -- Talpas 2-6 2-2 8, Davis 2-3 0-0 4, Lock 6-10 7-9 19, Littlefield 4-7 0-1 11, Bassett 8-13 4-5 23, Smith 0-1 0-0 0, Lafata 0-0 0-0 0, Shouse 0-0 0-0 0, Hatfield 0-0 0-0 0. Totals FG 22-40, FT 13-17, TP 65.
|Terre Haute South||21||7||18||19||--||65|
3Pt. Goals: N 9-20 (Keyes 5- 9, Timm 4-9, Akers 0-1, Brand 0-1), THS 8-13 (Bassett 3-4, Littlefield 3-4, Talpas 2-3, Davis 0-1, Smith 0-1). Total fouls: N 14, THS 13. Fouled out: Greenwood.Technical fouls: None. Rebounds: N 20 (Akers 7), THS 30 (Lock 12).Turnovers: N 7, THS 9. Steals: N 3 (Timm 2), THS 4 (Davis 2).
JV Game: Terre Haute South 59, Northview 30.
Next game: Saturday night, Northview (9-3) will play at home against
Indianapolis Broad Ripple. JV game starts at 6 p.m.