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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dixie Over North

After getting their first win of the season against Eaton, Dixie hit a losing streak.  They lost against Waynesville(53-52),  rival Brookville(67-49), and Northridge(80-37). So they were hoping to get back on track before entering Christmas break. This weekend they visited Preble County where they played against Preble Shawnee and Tri-County North.

Shawnee also had only a single win coming into the game.  And although the game was closely contested, Dixie would lose Friday night at Shawnee 47-52.  This set up their 3rd road game in a row Saturday against North who is winless on the season.

Dixie had an overall height advantage over North.  In the half court they used a zone early on, but would switch to man to man in the second quarter and would stay in that defense most of the game. They did mix in some ¾ court trapping which was semi effective.  They garnered a few turnovers but it was effective in that was able to slow down the North offense.

Dixie got an early lead and seemed poised to run away with the game in the first quarter with a 15-6 lead.   But North went on a run late – just before half time and made the game competitive.  With 2 minutes left it was a 3 point game with Dixie’s margin slimmed to 3 points.  But Dixie went on a run of their own at that time and closed the half with a more comfortable 30-21 lead.

Coming out at halftime it was plain to see that their strategy was now to utilize their height and feed the post.  Cody Grubb was the recipient of the extra attention to the post – scoring 20 of his game high 29 points in the second half.  North just could not seem to be able to stop Grubb inside.
North did make another run at Dixie in the third quarter.  They got the game to within 5 points midway through, but Dixie held them off and again extended their lead, this time into double digits. 

North pulled out all the stops – doing some full court man to man, switching to a zone defense. But the game seemed to spiral out of control in the 4th quarter.  Dixie was able to win running away with a 61-47 win. Still North was able to play with Dixie at times and made the game competitive.
TCN Coach King: “Even though we lost, I thought that the team made huge strides tonight.  It was quite a reverse in 24 hours.  We’re young and the late start didn’t help, so I have to have a lot of patience.  They have come a long way and I think that we are getting better. “

Damon Nelson, “He came off of the bench and got big points for us.  He’s been proving himself in practice and shows that he is capable of staying in front of the ball on defense.  And right now that is what we need – someone who can stay in front of the ball.  He’s worked hard and he got time tonight. His defense is what got him his minutes – the points are just icing on the cake.”

Dixie Scoring: Rutledge 1, Leonard 9, Simpson 4, Hale 9, Miller 6, Keiras 1, Rader 4, Grubb 29.

TCN Scoring: Louthan 6, Edgin 14,Cordes 7, Nelson 12, Woodyard 8.

North Dropped by Trail

Tri-County North dropped two games this weekend.  And to add to their dismay, both games were at home. They played against National Trail – a league foe who was also winless coming into the game and Dixie who was 1-5.   Against Trail they actually lead at one point, but when Trail put their foot down on the accelerator and picked up the pace of the game, they rapidly outscored North.   

The first quarter of the game was very slow paced as the two teams cautiously sparred against one another.  North had 8 fouls to Trails 2 near the end of the first quarter, so they were racking up fouls at too fast of a pace.  Still North managed to hold a 10-9 lead as the teams re-entered the court for the second quarter.   North scored a bucket early in the quarter, but then Trail went on a run and blew the game open.  North simply could not score – they must have thought that there were bunjee cords on the rim.  Jacob Louthen connected on a couple of free throws before halftime to stop the lopsided run, but North was staring at a double digit deficit going to the locker room 30-13.  

So what had been a close game had been blown wide open.  North continued to shoot cold in the second half, that and turnovers stymied them on offense.  Meanwhile the Blazers continued their scoring rate unabated. 58-35 was the final score.

“Friday night was a defensive breakdown for us. We allowed them to score 41 points in just 3 quarters. It comes down to stopping the ball.  We need to take pride in stopping the ball, we are capable of scoring, but we need to get stops. A good defense can translate into easy buckets for us.”
Scoring for North: Louthan 4, McCollough 2, Edgin 3, Cordes 8, Nelson 6, Vanbrederode 2, Ballard 2,Woodyard 8.

North next plays against Miami East, then will be in the annual holiday tournament hosted by Preble Shawnee.