Spartans prepare for Centerville after pair of weekend wins

Spartans prepare for Centerville after pair of weekend wins

DREW Sscerck vs Manual 1.27.2018 - Doug J
Senior Drew Sherck was impressive in Connersville’s 52-37 win over Indianapolis Manual, scoring 8 points on 4-of-4 shooting and pulling down a pair of rebounds. (Photo by Doug Jordan)

The best thing a basketball team can do after a tough loss is bounce back with a win. Or two.

Which is exactly what the Connersville Spartans did last weekend, posting non-conference victories over Mt. Vernon (Fortville) and Indianapolis Manual at Spartan Bowl.

Connersville (14-4) took control early, got excellent contributions from its bench and never trailed against Manual, beating the Redskins, 52-37, Saturday night.

As if it was scripted, the Spartans’ 42-37 win over the Marauders on Friday went into overtime — the third consecutive game the teams have needed more than 32 minutes to decide the winner.

After a free throw by Noah Belt gave CHS a 3-2 lead on Manual, head coach Kerry Brown’s cagers began to pull away from the much taller Redskins team, taking a 13-8 lead after one quarter and a 20-15 advantage at the midway break.

A 3-pointer by Wilante Hankston to start the third quarter trimmed the deficit to 20-18, but the Spartans utilized strong defense, excellent passing and teamwork to pull away from the Marion County school.

CHS limited Manual to just 6 points in the third stanza, and scored 21 points in the final eight minutes to post win No. 14.

BELT NOAH FTs vs Manual 1.27.2018 - Doug J
Forward Noah Belt knocks down 1 of the 8 free throws he made in the 4th quarter of Connersville’s 52-37 victory over Indianapolis Manual. (Photo by Doug Jordan)

Belt, who led Connersville with 18 points, 6 rebounds and 2 assists, made all 8 foul shots he attempted in the fourth quarter and was 9-of-10 overall. 

Drew Sherck came off the bench and gave the Big Red a huge lift, scoring 8 points (6 in the fourth period), grabbing a pair of rebounds and picking up an assist. The 6-4 senior was 4-for-4 from the floor.

Jacob Brown turned in another strong performance in a reserve role, scoring 7 points, garnering 4 rebounds and registering an assist, Garrett Silcott had 6 points, 7 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals, Braxton Revalee finished with 5 points, 1 rebound and a steal.

Another reserve, sophomore Clay Garrison, totaled 3 points, 2 boards, 2 assists and 2 steals, with both assists resulting in inside buckets by Sherck.

Dalton Lee had 3 points and 1 assist, Wes Smith had 2 points and 1 rebound and Tyler Combs grabbed a rebound. The other Spartans who come off the bench played but did not score.

CHS shot 18-for-31 from the floor, making 16-of-23 2-point attempts. 

Six-seven Jalen Johnson, who averages nearly 23 points a game, managed 12 points to lead Manual.

Trailing Mt. Vernon 14-6 after one quarter, Connersville held the Marauders to 2 points in the second stanza, a basket by Damari Gatewood just 38 seconds before the half, and led 21-16 at the break. 

CHS led by as many as 6 in the third quarter, and was ahead 35-31 after consecutive 3-pointers by Revalee and Belt, but MV chipped away and took a 37-35 lead on a trey by Peyton Meadors with 1:27 remaining.

Two free throws by Silcott with under a minute to play tied things at 37, resulting in overtime. The Spartans held the Marauders scoreless in the extra session to win, 42-37.

Wes Smith made the Spartans lone hoop in OT with Silcott converting a pair of free throws and Revalee sinking 1. 

Silcott finished with a double-double, 17 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists, with Belt also reaching double figures, scoring 12 points and snatching 7 boards.

JACOB Brown vs Manual 1.27.2018 - Doug J
Jacob Brown again provided a strong inside presence for Connersville against Indianapolis Manual, scoring 7 points and grabbing 4 rebounds. (Photo by Doug Jordan)

Garrison had 5 points, 2 assists, a rebound and a steal, Revalee had 4 points, 2 assists and a steal, Wes Smith finished 2 points, 4 rebounds and an assist, Brown had a basket and 1 rebound.

Lee, Combs and Wickes failed to score but contributed to the win, with Lee getting a rebound, steal and assist, Combs nabbing a rebound and dishing an assist and Wickes corralling 3 boards. 

Gatewood scored 10 points to top Mt. Vernon.

The Jr. Spartans split their weekend action, falling to Mt. Vernon, 39-34, before defeating Manual’s JV, 38-26.

Jonah Graham led the Jr. Spartans in scoring in both games, tallying 15 points against MV and 12 against Manual. Ethan Smith scored 8 points in each game and Colton Sullenbarger scored 6 in each contest.

Trevor Young notched 3 against MV, Wickes scored 2. Wickes had 6 points in the win over Manual with Damon Huffman adding 4 and Sabastian Burch 2.

Coach Chris Bottomley’s Jr. Spartans are 14-4.

With the IHSAA girls sectionals underway this week, including Class 4A Sectional 9 at Spartan Bowl, Connersville has a Friday night off but will return to action Saturday afternoon at Centerville.

The Spartans and Bulldogs get started at 1:30 p.m. with the junior varsity contest beginning at noon. Centerville (8-9) beat Winchester, 44-37, Wednesday night in a Tri-Eastern Conference game. 

You can listen to the CHS-Centerville game on Kmix 106.9 fm featuring announcers Sam Harvey and Dave Pollard. Kmix 106.9 can be accessed via the iTunes media player.

(Stats via MaxPreps)

Noah’s Battery, 320 E. 30th St., 692-0488

Lindy’s Liquor, 613 Grand Ave., 825-8731

Photos by Doug Jordan, 265-1230 —

Kmix 106.9 fm, Connersville


Mr. Pizza, Cambridge City 

Mr. Pizza, 239 W Main St., Cambridge City, 478-4721

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