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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

South Be-Deviled by Brookville

The Brookville Blue Devils focused on stopping one player - Wes Cole.  Cole, who had been fighting illness coming into the game, was held to just 5 points - and South could not find anyone else to score against Brookville's box and one defense. The defense was effective in that the chaser kept Cole from touching the ball from most of the night, and the box kept South from driving to the basket.

  Finally South, with the exception of the 2nd quarter, had problems shooting from the outside.  South’ defense, which had been playing with more vigor as of late, couldn’t keep Brookville from scoring.  And Brookville’s taller lineup did a fair job on the boards as well.

As has been the case in several of the last few games, South got out to a slow start offensively.  Brookville had a nice run to start the game, and South was forced to play catch up trailing 8-2.  In the second quarter, South’s offense got on track and they actually outscored Brookville with 5 players nailing treys during the frame and at the half they were down by 4, 25-21.  Cole provided momentum going into the locker room with a steal and layup right before the buzzer.

But that momentum did not carry far, Cole would not score the rest of the night and South was having problems hitting shots from outside again. With no one else stepping up, South was struggling to find any offense.  The third quarter was a wash with both teams scoring just 6 points each.  Brookville had another nice run to start the 4th quarter and went into a slowdown at the midway point.  South responded with a trapping defense.  Both teams were giving bonus, but Brookville was an impressive 18 of 20 on the night, while South only made 2 of 10.  With the Blue Devils acing shots at the foul line, South could not make up any ground and finally fell 51-39.

Still South had a good season – an undersized but scrappy team that utilized intensity on defense and physicality on the boards to compete against taller teams. They could strike from outside, but were proficient in driving to the basket. Again using strength and quickness to drive to the basket for scores. They were also a hard luck team.  Almost all their losses were by a basket or less.  So they very easily could have had several more wins and only lost to the number one ranked team in the state by a last second basket. 

“It was hard to prepare for this game with Wes Cole being sick,” stated coach Augspurger afterwards, “We considered the possibility that they might do something special against Wes.  But with him being out, we got ready with what we already knew.  We wanted our defense to keep them from being able to score, and I thought our effort was there. Brad Cox had one of his best nights ever for them. We held down their main two scorers, but he came thru for them in a big way. They outplayed us tonight – and they shot much, much better from the free throw line.”

He went on about the season, “I really enjoyed this team; this team played basketball the way that Twin Valley South basketball should be played.  They played tough, they played hard and with intensity. I was disappointed that we could not continue on for them. Our 5 seniors will be tough to replace. Wes Cole has been a very good athlete for us. Anthony Augspurger was a hard nosed defender, Jacob and Jason helped quite a bit too. They were good, they will be missed.” 

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