North Harrison falls to New Albany
George Browning, Sports Writer, [email protected]
The visiting New Albany Bulldogs used a third-quarter spurt against North Harrison on Saturday to turn a close game into a lopsided, 67-47 win, against the Cougars.
New Albany led 30-25 at intermission but then used a 10-0 run that eventually extended to 14-2 in the early minutes of the third quarter. North Harrison was never able to recover.
Cougar coach Lou Lefevre said the New Albany run was a matter of his squad not starting the second half with the same approach it had in the first two quarters.
“We came out in the second half and New Albany increased the pressure, and we threw the ball away and it led to some easy baskets for them,” he said. “That seemed to drain all of our energy. Good, mature, experienced teams don’t let that happen. When you make a couple of mistakes, you don’t lose your fire and your ferociousness, but we seemed to lose it at that point. It was almost like a balloon had popped. All of the gas was out of us, and we never got back in the game.”
North Harrison fell behind by six, 13-7, late in the first quarter, but a basket by Braden Jenkins and a three from Langdon Hatton pulled them to within two, 14-12, heading into the second quarter.
Another basket by Hatton and baskets by Sawyer Wetzel and Jenkins kept the Cougars within two throughout the early portion of the second quarter.
Colin Higdon also contributed offensively for NH by putting in two after snagging an offensive rebound. Higdon’s bucket cut New Albany’s lead to two, 22-20.
The Bulldogs outscored North Harrison 8-2, thanks to back-to-back three-pointers by Kaden Stanton.
Like they had done most of the first half, the Cougars responded.
Logan McIntire hit a shot, and Hatton converted an and-one opportunity to make the half-time margin.
“We did a good job in the first half getting opportunities to score,” Lefevre said. “Defensively, we didn’t do a great job, but we did do enough that they weren’t getting an easy basket every time down the floor.”
The Bulldogs opened the third quarter looking as if they found a different gear. The 10-0 spurt was sparked by Tucker Biven, who, after going scoreless in the first 16 minutes of the game, scored seven points. A two by Stanton and a two by Trey Hourigan off a missed New Albany basket made the run 14-2.
North Harrison’s lone basket during the first 5:30 of the third quarter was a deuce by Hatton.
Despite the play of Jenkins, who scored 11 of his team-high 17 points in the second half, the Cougars were unable to make up any ground.
One of the reasons for New Albany’s ability to extend and keep the lead is the way it attacked the offensive glass. Lefevre said the Bulldogs got too many second- and third-chance baskets, thanks to their rebounding.
“Really, we got absolutely destroyed on the offensive boards,” he said. “Even when we played good defense and forced a missed shot, they got second and third chances. What can you say? That’s just an effort thing. We didn’t make the effort to keep them away from the rim. At other times, we just didn’t go up hard for the ball. New Albany went up hard for the ball and we would get a hand on it, but they seemed to want it more and knocked it away and ended up getting easy baskets because of it. We would work hard on defense, force a miss; they’d get a rebound and a layup.”
Hatton added 16 points, joining Jenkins as the only two North Harrison players in double figures.
Lefevre commented on both Hatton and Jenkins.
“New Albany was doing a good job against Hatton, not letting him get one-on-one opportunities in the post,” he said. “At the end of the game, he got a few and, when he is able to get one-on-one in the post, he has a good chance to score or draw the foul. They didn’t allow him to do that and did a good job of not letting us throw it to him. Braden did a good job in the post and got some points for us. He was able to catch it. When either one of them can catch it, they can score and draw fouls. We just weren’t able to do it enough.”
Next up for the Cougars will be two Mid-Southern Conference contests. North Harrison will host Austin on Friday and travel to Scottsburg on Saturday.
New Albany 14 16 23 14 – 67
North Harrison 12 13 8 14 – 47
New Albany (6-4) – Kaden Stanton 21, Trey Hourigan 16, Tucker Biven 11, Jordan Thomas 8, Jackson Streander 5, Julien Hunter 4, Maddox Schmelz 2.
North Harrison (6-3) – Braden Jenkins 17, Langdon Hatton 16, Sawyer Wetzel 5, Logan McIntire 4, Kaleb Kellems 3, Colin Higdon 2.
3-point goals – New Albany 5 (Stanton 3, Biven 1, Hourigan 1); North Harrison 3 (Hatton 1, Kellems 1, Wetzel 1).