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BOYS SECTIONAL PREVIEW: Chargers ready to showcase improvement

North Montgomery is excited to get back on the court this week.

The young Chargers know they have improved this season, and they’re ready to show it.

North Montgomery (2-11) started the season 0-5, but the Chargers have won two of their last eight outings, and seen a steady increase in points scored since notching their first win. In the first five games of the season, the Chargers failed to hit 40 points, but have raised their season average to 40 points per game.

“I think the team has improved offensively from the beginning of the season,”North Montgomery coach Chad Arnold said. “The guys are starting to realize what we are trying to do offensively, as a result our scoring has gone up.”

North Montgomery graduated six seniors from a 13-11 team last season, lost a whole summer due to COVID-19 and returned just one varsity regular this season. Throw on multiple quarantines, and it’s been a tough season — but Arnold is confident that better days are ahead.

“Obviously, when you get quarantined a couple times, only have one returning player and are playing a lot of youth it makes it more challenging,” he said. “We just keep telling these young guys that the storm will end, and we got to be ready when it does. I think this helps them stay focused and understand that we just need to get better each day.”

North Montgomery hasn’t played a game since Feb. 9.

The Chargers this season have played four freshmen and are led by rookie Jarrod Kirsch with 8.8 points per game. Brother Jakob Kirsch, a junior, chips in 8.6 a game and lone senior Logan Kelly averages 8.4 points per game.

North Montgomery’s sectional opponent will be a tough task, as Greencastle is 18-6 on the season and defeated the Chargers 74-45 in the regular season. Senior Brody Whitaker leads the Tiger Cubs with 23.7 points per game.

“Greencastle is a good basketball team, and they have a really good player out of Brody Whitaker,” Arnold said. “I was pleased on how we executed on the offensive side the last time we played them. I thought we did a good job scoring the ball the first half. To win this game we must score the ball all four quarters, rebound, and try to make it difficult on them to score.”

The winner will play the winner of Crawfordsville (12-6) and Danville (14-4) in the semifinals on Friday.

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