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Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014

Eastern Greene advances to GCI semifinals

Thursday, January 3, 2013

(Photo)
Eastern Greene senior Michael Hartman is shown during the Clay City game at the Greene County Invitational Thursday night. Hartman received the Character Counts Award from the Southern Indiana Chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes before the 55-35 win. (By Shad Cox). [Order this photo]
SWITZ CITY -- Two-time defending champion Eastern Greene began defense of its title with a 55-35 victory over Clay City in a first-round game at the Greene County Invitational here Thursday night.

The Thunderbirds, who defeated the Eels for the seventh straight time and improved to 9-1, limited Clay City to just three field goals in the middle two quarters, as they turned an 11-5 deficit into a 45-22 advantage allowed just 10 points in a stretch of 16 minutes.

"We showed a lot of rust offensively in the first half," Eastern Greene boys basketball coach Levi Carmichael said of not playing for 12 days. "But defensively I was very happy."

And why not.

Clay City missed 12 straight shots after taking that six-point lead in the first quarter. They went through a stretch of making 3 of 19 (16 percent) as the Eels slipped to 4-5.

"We executed our defense game plan to a T," said Carmichael.

Clay City did shoot 42 percent overall (13 of 31), but missed all 15 shots from 3-point range.

The Eels had 10 turnovers and made 2 of 8 shots in the second period as Eastern Greene forged ahead 25-17 at intermission.

While Clay City was colder than the temperatures outside the gymnasium playing host to the 43rd annual GCI, the Thunderbirds made 14 of 22 baskets over the middle quarters, 64 percent.

"We kept working and got things going in the third quarter and was able to build a pretty good lead," Carmichael said.

The Thunderbirds had eight assists on nine third-quarter hoops and 18 on their 21 baskets. Logan Frye dished out a game-best six assists.

"We were not in sync offensively early," said Carmichael. "But we did play a solid third quarter at both ends."

Center Nathan Sparks benefited from some of that stellar ball movement, making 6 of 7 shots as part of a 14-point performance. He also grabbed five rebounds.

Kurtis Stille did not miss in four shot attempts and finished with eight points and 10 rebounds, keying a 30-25 advantage on the boards.

Leading scorer Tyler Brough was limited to 10 points on 3-for-11 shooting, all 3-point makes. He also dished out two assists.

All 14 Thunderbirds in uniform got to participate, including Michael Hartman (two points and one assist). Before the game, the senior was presented with the Character Counts Award, presented by the Southern Indiana chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Clay City was led by Blake Cesinger, who had 11 points before receiving a technical foul in the second half and not returning.

"We were just fortunate that Clay City was not making some of the shots they normally make," said Carmichael. "In tournament play, you want to survive and advance and that's what we did.

"We will have to get ready for a tough game Friday."

The Thunderbirds, who have won 16 of the past 20 meetings with Clay City, will play at 7:30 p.m. Friday (tonight) in the second semifinal game against the winner of the White-River Valley.

CLAY CITY (35) -- Trevor Singer 1-2 0-0 2, Steven Phillips 0-0 0-0 0, Blake Cesinger 4-12 3-6 11, Logan Cesinger 2-8 0-0 4, Evan Rogers 1-7 3-4 5, Noah Denker 1-2 2-2 4, Paiden Myers 0-4 1-3 1, Easton Booe 0-1 0-0 0, Kurtis Yocum 1-1 0-0 2, Parker Ames 0-0 0-0 0, Josh Miller 3-4 0-2 6, Hunter Wolfe 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 13-31 9-17 35.

EASTERN GREENE (55) -- Kurtis Stille 4-4 0-0 8, Briar Martindale 2-5 2-2 7, Nathan Sparks 6-7 2-4 14, Logan Frye 1-3 2-2 4, Tyler Brough 3-11 1-2 10, Zak Eckerle 2-5 0-0 4, Alex Brough 0-0 0-0 0, Cam Creager 0-0 0-0 0, Camden Sego 0-1 0-0 0, Jacob Henderson 1-3 2-2 4, Michael Hartman 1-1 0-1 2, Trevor Yoho 1-1 0-0 2, Braydon Crowe 0-0 0-0 0, Cole Chitwood 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 21-41 9-13 55.

Clay City 12 5 5 13 -- 35

Eastern Greene 11 14 20 10 -- 55

3-point shooting -- Clay City 0-18 (Singer 0-1, Wolfe 0-1, Myers 0-3, L. Cesinger 0-3, B. Cesinger 0-4, Rogers 0-6), Eastern Greene 4-15 (T. Brough 3-8, Martindale 1-2, Sparks 0-1, Henderson 0-2, Frye 0-2). Fouls -- Clay City 18, Eastern Greene 16. Fouled out -- None. Technical foul -- B. Cesinger. Rebounds -- Clay City 25 (B. Cesinger 5, Miller 5), Eastern Greene 30 (Stille 8, Sparks 5). Assists -- Clay City 2 (B. Cesinger, Rogers), Eastern Greene 18 (Frye 6). Steals -- Clay City 7 (B. Cesinger 2, L. Cesinger 2, Rogers 2), Eastern Greene 2 (Stille, Sego). Turnovers -- Clay City 17 (B. Cesinger 5), Eastern Greene 14 (Frye 5). Blocks -- None.



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