Connersville turns back Muncie Central

Connersville turns back Muncie Central

chs spartans logoJust about the time it seemed like the Connersville Spartans were going to take one on the chin from a talented Muncie Central team, things changed.

Trailing 27-15 midway through the 2nd quarter and 35-28 in the 3rd, CHS forged 38-37 lead on a pair of free throws by sophomore guard Garrett Silcott, weathered a storm that saw the Bearcats take a 43-38 advantage, and gradually pulled away for a 56-49 victory. The Spartans improved to 11-3, Muncie Central is 9-4.

Silcott led Connersville with a game-high 19 points — making 5 field goals and knocking down 9-of-11 free throws. The sophomore also had 4 rebounds and 3 assists. Grant Smith scored 13 points, Tyler Billups had 12 and 4 rebounds, Beau Isaacs finished with 7 points and a game-high 10 boards and Noah Belt scored 5 points.

Chandler Graves did not score but grabbed 6 rebounds, helping Connersville win the rebounding battle, 27-20. Andre Jones topped Muncie Central with 13 points and 9 rebounds. Six-eight, 285-pound center Donald Allen did not play, missing his second consecutive game.

The Spartans displayed a never-give-up, never-back-off style that has served the team well all season. It was much needed after the Bearcats bolted to a 35-27 early in the 3rd quarter, and again when a 38-37 CHS lead turned into a 43-38 deficit.

Billups nailed a 3-pointer and scored inside to tie it at 43, and Silcott used a nice head fake to get a bank shot to fall with 2:52 remaining to give Connersville the lead for good.

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In the final 2 minutes, Billups scored a layup off a full-court pass, Silcott made 5-of-6 free throws and Isaacs added a pair of freebies to close out the scoring for coach Kerry Brown’s team. CHS shot 22-for-26 from the charity stripe (84.6 percent).

The Spartans hit the road Tuesday to battle New Castle. The Trojans (10-1) defeated Rushville, 63-45, Saturday night. New Castle’s only loss is to Lapel, the No. 1 team in Class 2A. The Bulldogs (12-1) beat the Trojans, 68-58, on Dec. 19.

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The Pizza Place, 105 E. 16th St.

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