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Hoosier Hysteria starts at Crawford Jamboree

Hoosier Hysteria starts at Crawford Jamboree
Hoosier Hysteria starts at Crawford Jamboree
Crawford County graduate Hal Pearson, middle, draws up a play during a time out at Saturday night’s Crawford Jamboree. Pearson returned to his alma mater as head coach of the Lady Pack basketball team after resigning his JV boys coaching position at North Harrison this summer. (Photo by Alan Stewart)

The heartbeat of Indiana high school girls basketball was jolted into action on Saturday night as eight teams got their juices flowing for the upcoming hoops season.
The Crawford County Jamboree — which pits two teams against each other for two eight-minute scrimmages — got off to a sluggish start as the gymnasium lights went completely out 1:30 into the first contest. After a 20-minute delay, illumination returned and action got back underway.
“I’ll never forget my first coaching experience,” joked Crawford’s Hal Pearson, who is making his debut as a girls head varsity coach after coaching boys junior varsity at North Harrison. “The lights were out for 20 or 30 minutes. That was wild. I thought it was an exciting night. Eight good teams coming in and that’s what it’s about. It was enjoyable to sit and watch. It was a good atmosphere.”
In that first matchup, Cannelton, led by Theresa Alvey’s 12 points, edged out a 28-24 affair over Paoli while Springs Valley used a balanced attack to dust Orleans, 30-10.
In the third scrimmage of the evening, the Lady Cats of North Harrison squared off against West Washington and scratched out a 34-17 score versus the Lady Senators. North led by just three at the intermission, 10-7.
Junior gunner Kim McMillin scored 13 points with a pair of threes, fellow junior Liz Geltmaker notched seven points and freshman Morgan Carr came off the bench to go 3-3 from the field for six points. Freshman Tara Miller scored four in her varsity debut with Amanda Hecker tacking on two points, and Andrea Langemaat and Lindsay Shroyer both netting a free throw apiece.
The Lady Cats were just 4-19 from the field in the first quarter while holding the Lady Senators to 2-12. North buckled down in the second stanza with a 10-19 effort from the floor.
“Did we stink or what?” asked North Harrison coach Missy Voyles. “I don’t understand being nervous in a scrimmage. I don’t. But I’ve got a lot of kids out there who haven’t played varsity ball really so I guess I can (understand).”
Voyles said she doesn’t expect her team’s lethargic shooting to continue into Friday night’s season-opener against Jeffersonville.
“I don’t think that’s going to be typical for us,” said Voyles. “Kim isn’t typically going to shoot what she did the first quarter. One for nine is not typical for her. She finally started stroking a little bit and got a lot better.”
Jennifer Ingram paced West Washington with four points in the losing effort.
In the final matchup of the night it was all Bianca Haverstock and Crawford County as the hosts trounced Henryville, 37-12.
Haverstock, a hot-shooting sophomore who led the team in scoring last season (17.8 ppg.), scored inside, outside, on drives and on superb passing from her teammates to the tune of 24 points with a trio of threes. Kacie Gayheart, a senior member of the Lady Pack, posted five points with sophomore Amanda Benson chipping in four. Allison Sauer and Rikki Beaver both added two points apiece.
Nerves never seemed to be a problem for the Lady Pack.
“We’re going to a totally new style,” Pearson said. “Maybe they were so focused on doing some of the different things we were doing, running to the right spots and getting to where they were going, they didn’t realize what was going on. I noticed North Harrison came out and was a little sluggish and some of the other teams were sluggish. North Harrison looked really good once they got going.”
The Lady Pack opened a 22-5 lead in the first quarter on 10 of 17 shooting from the field. Henryville was just 1-8. Crawford kept up the hot shooting in the second quarter with a 6-10 effort while the Lady Hornets, which were led by slashing junior guard Alicia Hatter’s 10 points, went 3-10 in the period.
Pearson said Haverstock will likely draw the opposition’s best defensive player. That should allow some scoring from other members of the Lady Pack.
“Bianca will always stand out,” said Pearson. “She’s got the green light. It’s no secret. But the rest of them, if somebody focuses on Bianca and really tries to shut her down, you saw other people step up and hit. Even Allison Sauer stepped up and hit a big shot.
“They’re ready to fire at will. They’re not timid about it and if somebody really focuses on Bianca, I think we’ve got two or three girls that can step up and really hurt somebody.
“Kacie stepped up. Rikki didn’t shoot as much tonight. She’s usually a little more active but what I noticed is underneath she’s a lot more active. Meghan Kelly played well underneath the basket. She had some nice blocks and rebounds and began to feed off the rest of them. She can be a little timid but she really went after it tonight.
“That’s what we tell them, to play hard. If you play hard, a lot of mistakes are covered up.”