Must be Madness: CC wins a wild one
The Class 3A sectional at Corydon Central was expected to be a meat grinder, and the first two games last night did nothing to dispel that notion.
Corydon Central went into overtime to win a opening game against Madison. To do it, the Panthers won on the same thing that almost let the war slip away: free throws.
Through regulation, the hosts hit just 10 of 20 chances. But in the extra frame, Corydon dropped in 11 of 12 tries to secure the hard-fought, 63-54 victory.
In the nightcap, Salem opened a 17-point lead in the third period only to have a high-powered Scottsburg offense rally to take the point in the fourth quarter. In the end, however, the Lions held on for the 70-64 victory.
In the first semifinal game on Friday at 6 p.m., three-time defending 3A champion Corydon will battle Salem, which is also a defending champ, having moved up from the 2A ranks this season. The second matchup at 7:30 will pit North Harrison against Silver Creek.
Corydon 63, Madison 54
Madison is no stranger to the last-second tip in sectional play.
Cue last year’s semi-final loss to Providence: the Cubs were able to get off two shots in the last 1.4 seconds of regulation to send the contest into overtime. Norman Wells, then a freshman, missed a runner in the lane and Lou Rohlfing grabbed the rebound and banked home the game-tying bank shot. In the end, however, Providence won the game, 66-64.
Fast-forward to last night’s epic here: Wells worked his magic again, this time hitting the last-second attempt (after a controversial inadvertent whistle) to force a fifth period. Again, the Cubs ran out of gas and fell, 63-54.
‘We got a win,’ Corydon coach Randy Gianfagna said. ‘Ryan (Herndon) hit a big three to end the half and I told my kids after the first half that we couldn’t have played any worse and (Madison) couldn’t have played any better and let’s go get them.’
The Panthers trailed for all of the first and second frames, with a buzzer-beating three by Ryan Herndon tying the game at 24-all at the break.
After going a frigid 2-12 from the floor in the first half, Panthers all-state candidate Kyle Savely hit five of seven shots and put in 14 of his game-high 23 points in the third period. His team rolled out to a 13-point lead heading into the fourth, 45-32.
Madison made an 8-0 run from the end of the third quarter through the start of the fourth on a freebie by Adam Davis and baskets by Corey Getz, Norman Wells and an old-fashioned three by Lou Rohlfing.
Thanks to the Cubs’ smothering and physical press, Corydon’s 45-32 lead at the end of three was quickly reduced to 45-39 with 6:53 left in regulation.
Panthers senior James Yeager hit his team’s only field goal with 6:07 showing in the fourth quarter and Kurt Savely followed with a pair of free throws to put their team’s lead back to double digits.
Wells and Rohlfing paired up for another 6-0 spurt, with Yeager sinking a free throw to slow the skid. Getz dropped home a charity toss and Asher Bock slid in a put-back to make it 50-48 with 19 ticks remaining.
On the ensuing possession, Kyle Savely was fouled with 10.3 left, but missed both free throws. On the second miss, Wells pulled down the board, passed off to Allen and got the ball back in the lane. He put up a shot, missed, and then got into a tipping duel with Corydon’s Eric Haub. As time dwindled away and shot after shot rolled off the iron, one official ran into the play with whistle blowing and arms waving: he thought the clock had run out, when in fact there was still a tenth of a second remaining.
After a discussion with his partner, it was decided that by virtue of the possession arrow, Madison would retain custody of the ball and an additional three-tenths of a second would be added to the clock.
Inbounding the ball under its own basket, the sphere came into Wells in the low post. He tipped the ball in to send the fight into overtime, 50-50.
With momentum swinging their way, the Cubs scored the first points in the extra frame on a steal by Wells and a lay-in by Allen. That would be one of just two field goals Madison would hit in the period.
Corydon knocked down its free throws and outscored the Cubs the rest of the way, 13-2.
Kyle Savely finished with 23 points on 7-of-22 shooting from the field. He didn’t fare much better at the stripe, sinking just 7-12, but in the clutch, he sank all four tries in the overtime. The star guard had a superb floor game with five steals, three steals, two blocks and a pair of assists.
Kurt Savely scored 10 of his 13 points in the second half, went 5-7 at the line and carded a double-double with 11 rebounds. Yeager put in 13 as well, with a 6-of-8 night at the foul line. Eric Haub scored nine points, had five rebounds and two blocks and sophomore Ryan Herndon carded five points and four rebounds.
For the second-straight game, Corydon was scoreless from the bench, however Josh Stepro stepped in and pulled down three rebounds.
The Panthers were a respectable 13-25 on field goals in the second and third quarters, but couldn’t hit the broad side of a 1969 Caddy in the bookends: Corydon was just 4-23 in the first and final quarters. The team finished with a mark of 18 of 50.
‘We took some out of control shots. We dove into people trying to get the referees to bail us out,’ Gianfagna said. ‘I don’t really care how pretty it was; we won.’
The hosts were 3-5 on threes in the third period and finished at 6-of-15. On free throws, the winners were 21 of 32. Corydon tied Madison on the boards, 45-all.
The Cubs were 21 of 67 from the field and posted their best shooting numbers when Corydon was at its worst. Madison was a combined 15-31 in the first and last periods, but managed to shoot just 4-29 in the middle of the game.
Madison was led by Wells’ 16 points and Lou Rohlfing had 11 points before fouling out.