BBB: Athenians march past Mounties 76-51 to county title
January 23, 2019
Crawfordsville’s boys basketball team put Goal No. 2 on their finished list as they claimed the County Championship with a 76-51 win over Southmont.
The Athenians, who move to 9-4 overall and 3-0 in the Sagamore Conference as well, were one point short of five guys in double figures, as they end a two-win streak by the Mounties in the county series, and now own a 47-22 lead all-time.
“Our motto is ‘Earn Everything,’” Athenians coach David Pierce said, “and we did that tonight. We had 20 assists on 30 made shots, we looked all night for the open shooter. When South got it to seven points in the third quarter, the kids dug deep. We showed toughness, maturity and leadership.”
The shooter who got things going was Anthony Gonzalez.
The senior missed his second shot of the game, but made the next 10, as he finished with a career-best 26 points, going 11-of-12 from the field and 5-of-6 from three-point range.
“I knew they were going in,” Gonzalez said. “This afternoon I hit 12 in a row in warmups, but my teammates are amazing. They got me the ball on open looks. I had a big night against Crawfordsville when I was playing for South, so tonight I had a good night against them. It feels good. This was a big team win.”
Gonzalez was the hottest of a hot-shooting Crawfordsville bunch, who rarely missed, going 30-of-51 from the field. At one point in the second half they had hit 16-of-18 shots.
“We had good shot selection tonight,” Pierce noted, “but the assists are the key. We have post guys that can pass, and we have lots of guys who can shoot. We have to get the open shooter the ball.”
Karsten Williamson and Jesse Johnson-Hall each tallied a dozen points while Tray Scorza had 11. Will Kellerman had nine.
“Crawfordsville was really hot,” Mounties coach Jake Turner said. “Gonzalez was like a 19 percent three-shooter and hit all his. We did a lot of things well tonight. We were aggressive, we handled the pressure fairly well, and we out-rebounded Crawfordsville. We have struggled to score points and had 16 in the first quarter. We just had some turnovers in batches, and that hurt us. Crawfordsville is a good team that is hard to guard.”
There were several scoring streaks.
The Athenians started 7-2, but South got it back to within two late in the first.
The home team had a 9-0 run at the end of the first half and into the second, but a 10-2 Mounties surge had the game 37-30 Crawfordsville with 4:21 left in that third quarter.
A timeout changed everything.
“Jake (Turner) really had a good plan against us,” Pierce said. “When they got it to seven, we just had to go back to what we do best, which is our run and jump. We turned it up full court and forced some turnovers and pushed some long rebounds.”
From 37-30, Crawfordsville went on a 25-5 run.
“(Justin) Howard played really well,” Turner said of his leading scorer, who had 26. “We also had good efforts from two of our sophomores, Austin Bowman and Luke Gregg. We bounced back from last Friday and had a lot of energy.”
Both teams are back in Sagamore action Friday, as South travels to Lebanon, while Crawfordsville heads to Frankfort.