Injury-plagued Rebels upended vs. Crothersville
South Central continues to juggle its line-up as the season goes on, more out of necessity than anything else.
A pair of back-court players ‘ senior Nick Wemes and junior Cory Ray ‘ are out for a lengthy amount of time with injuries. Ray recently suffered a break on his non-shooting hand.
Thrown into the mix as well was one of South Central coach Ryan Crick’s subs, Logan May, who rolled his ankle in practice.
Trying to play through the rash of injuries, South Central fell behind Friday to Southern Athletic Conference-foe Crothersville in Elizabeth. Trailing by as many as 20 points, South Central rallied to make the Tigers sweat a bit but never fully made the comeback. Crothersville came in and won on homecoming night, 61-56.
‘You find out a guy that averages 12 to 14 points per game isn’t playing today, how do you adjust?’ Crick said. ‘We brought Logan Stewart up, and he played a lot of minutes tonight. Cody Baelz got a lot of minutes.’
South Central struggled to corral rebounds for much of the game, especially in the opening half. For the game, Crothersville out-rebounded the Rebels 38-25.
Keeping pace with Crothersville’s Jordan Schoenfelder was a task as well. He scored eight of his team-best 16 points in the first quarter. He scored on a drive early to put the Tigers up 9-3.
‘They killed us on the boards,’ Crick said. ‘(Schoenfelder) killed us in the first half. He was scoring in the paint whenever he wanted to.’
South Central bounced back with Owen Shewmaker slipping open for a basket on a press break with a pass ahead by Baelz. Returning the scoring favor on another break, Baelz put in a bucket from Stewart’s pass over the top.
Stewart provided three assists in the first quarter, the final to Shewmaker to bring South Central within one point, 12-11.
Shewmaker finished with 16 points, while Baelz added 10 for the Rebels.
‘I give Cody Baelz props,’ Crick said of the sophomore. ‘He played so hard tonight. He’s a kid that won’t give up. He’s going to fight. Does he need to work on blocking out? Yes. But I think he played extremely hard.’
Zack Goodwin had one of three first-quarter blocked shots turn into a coast-to-coast effort for two points.
South Central trailed by three after eight minutes, but the start of the second quarter saw Crothersville pull away, going on a 10-0 run with Tyler Luedeman scoring two field goals.
Shewmaker tried to keep South Central in the contest, putting in four field goals in the frame. Guard Sutton Day had the other Rebels’ bucket, but Crothersville outscored them 24-11 in the second to lead 40-24 at the half.
‘Shewmaker, when he connected, was very good, but he missed a few others inside,’ Crick said. ‘Not having guards is hurting us, that’s for sure.’
Day is splitting the guard duties with Goodwin, who has played multiple positions this season. Day finished with 10 points, while Goodwin had six points and eight rebounds.
A 3-pointer by Micah Mains put Crothersville up by its largest margin, 47-27, in the third quarter.
From there, South Central tried to rally back. The rest of the game, Crothersville scored only three more field goals.
Although the Rebels trailed by 20 to start the final quarter, they didn’t give in. The come-back attempt was aided by poor Crothersville free-throw shooting. They went five of 15 in the fourth.
At one point, South Central rolled to 12 straight points. Contributions came from all around with Alex Goforth, Baelz, Day and Shewmaker scoring.
With 1:10 to play, a pair of Baelz freebies brought the Rebels within 10 points. South Central came within six points with 20 seconds left.
‘They hit six shots in the second half, so we had chances to get back into it,’ Crick said. ‘The start of the fourth quarter we went full-court man. We applied some pressure. When we got them in an up-and-down game, they started making some mistakes, throwing the ball around.’
Crothersville turned the ball over 15 times in the second half. Turning a lot of those mistakes into points didn’t happen often enough for South Central.
‘When we came down, we didn’t take advantage of those possessions,’ Crick said. ‘We shot too many threes instead of going to the rim.’
Crothersville junior Eli Mollet was tough inside, not only scoring 10 points, but grabbing 16 rebounds. Dakota Mount had seven points and 10 rebounds.
South Central will hit the road today (Wednesday), heading to North Posey. The Rebels will return home Friday, seeking a win in SAC play when Henryville visits.
Crothersville 16 24 14 7 ‘ 61
South Central 13 11 10 22 ‘ 56
Crothersville (5-13, 1-2 SAC) ‘ Schoenfelder 16, Luedeman 11, Mollet 10, Adams 7, Mount 7, Byrd 6, Mains 4.
South Central (2-15, 0-3) ‘ Shewmaker 16, Baelz 11, Day 10, Goforth 8, Goodwin 6, Stewart 5.
3-point goals ‘ Crothersville 3 (Luedeman, Adams, Mains); South Central 1 (Stewart).