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Friday, February 03, 2012

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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Twin Valley South came into this week riding a 3 game losing skid, albeit against some top notch teams. The Panthers needed some victories to get their momentum back and this was a 3 game week with a rescheduled game against Bradford teed up first. They were able to dispatch the Railroaders 57-54 before going into the weekend with back to back games against Arcanum and Brookville. The Trojans fell 63-54 Friday and so the Panthers were ready to go for the trifecta against the Blue Devils. But Brookville would prove to be a stubborn nut to crack.

With only two victories it would be easy to overlook Brookville. But they had home court advantage and looked to be well prepared. They must have seen how South had problems with trapping defenses as they would use a ¾ court trap in the second half to throw South off balance and make a strong run. But the first half would go to South. They were able to get points from their big men even though Brookville tried to use a 2-3 zone to nail down the inside game. But it was a low scoring affair, about half way the second quarter it was only 13-10 in favor of South. However, South would finish the half strong thanks to a pair of Cole Cottingim treys to close out the half up decisively 23-13.

It looked like the game would be well in hand and I think the Panther fans were ready for the visiting team to extend their run coming out of the locker room and walk off with a victory. But Brookville ran their trap constantly in the second half and this put South into hurry up mode – when they didn’t turn over the ball, they rushed their shots and as a result were missing. At the other end of the court Brookville, who had been slow to score all night, found their range and began connecting on three point shots.

Brookville was able to take the lead (28-27) at the 05:26 mark in the 3rd quarter. The lead would bounce back and forth over the remainder of the quarter, until the end when Mike Green scored 2 baskets – to tie, then give South a slim 36-34 lead going into the last quarter. But Green had not cooled down yet, he was able to get 2 more baskets to extend South’s lead to start the last quarter. But would a 6 point lead be enough? South defenders worked hard, but Brookville was able to chip away at the South lead.

With a minute left, South had a 40-38 lead. South threw the ball away when they tried to go into a slowdown. But South was able to get the ball back and now Brookville had to foul with 30 seconds left in the game. Although South didn’t drain the nets from the foul line, they hit the front end of 1 and 1’s. Johnny Myers and Wes Cole made trips to the foul line and extended South’s lead for a 45-41 victory.

Coach Augspurger was not as happy as one would think after three victories, “One of my favorite expressions is playing with defensive integrity. When you are playing with defensive integrity then no matter who you are playing with, no matter what the score, you set yourself up for success. I have talked to this team about it, but we just haven’t shown it whatsoever.”

He continued, ”We have a tendency that we look at who we are playing and what their record is. When we play against good teams we have good quarters, we play close against them and lose. And against lesser teams - no offense to teams with a handful of wins, we come in and play to their level. We have not been a good enough Monday through Thursday team in practice. I am a huge believer that is important. We are not where we want to be at this point in the season.”

Scoring for TVS: Anthony Augspurger 4, Wes Cole 4, Cole Cottingim 8, Mike Green 14, Troy Innis 3, Johnny Myers 12. Scoring for Brookville: Derek Day 3, Logan Kindell 17, Austin Kuck 3, Luke Landis 6, Chaise Spangler 2, Tyler Tincher 8, Wes Zellers 2.