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Vikings crush Southwood

POINTS: Senior guard Keegan Bartrom buried five points during Huntington North's 56–27 win over Southwood on Friday.

by Jacob Rude - sports@wabashplaindealer.com

WABASH – Last season, the Huntington North boys’ basketball team carried a double-digit lead into the locker room at halftime against Southwood before seeing it all crumble away before hanging on for a memorable win.

On Friday, the Vikings ensured there would not be a repeat.

After leading 32–21 at the break, Huntington North flexed its defensive muscle, holding the Knights to six second-half points while scoring 24 of their own to earn a convincing win, 56–27.

“I thought we did a nice job pushing the ball out, trying to get in transition some,” Huntington North head coach Craig Teagle said. “We knew they were going to press us and we wanted to attack the pressure. Last year, we played real tentative in the second half and played not to lose. We were like ‘We’re not playing that way this year. You’re going at the basket and we’re going to go to the rim.’ We turned it over way too many times but at least we’re a little more aggressive.”

Southwood used a pair of impressive quarters in the first half from separate individuals to stay within range of Huntington North. Dallas Holmes scored all 11 of Southwood’s points in the first quarter before Carson Rich scored the next eight points in the second quarter.

Those individual performances, though, did not carry over into the second half as the Knights finished just 3-of-25 from the field in the third and fourth quarters.

“We had some real offensive issues in the third quarter,” Southwood head coach John Burrus said. “That was probably the key quarter. The first half looked like kind of a normal game. We were down 11. It looked like we had some shots that maybe we would hit in the second half but we didn’t hit them. We struggled on the boards. Their big kids hurt us on both ends. I think they were the key.”

Hank Pulver and Sawyer Stoltz did much of the damage for Huntington North. The duo combined for 36 points and 25 rebounds on the night, both out-scoring and out-rebounding the Knights as a team, while shooting 15-of-26 from the field.

Stoltz made a living in the paint for the Vikings, scoring five of the first seven points for Huntington. Stoltz scored 15 of his 24 points in the first half before scoring seven more in the third quarter.

Pulver and Stoltz scored the opening seven points in the first quarter as the Vikings grabbed an early lead. Dallas Holmes kept Southwood in the ball game with a barrage of baskets, including a three-pointer, as the Knights trailed just 15–11 after one.

Stoltz and Pulver again scored the opening seven points of the second quarter as part of a 10–0 run to build up an 11-point lead, a margin that would carry into the halftime break.

Once again in the third, Stoltz and Pulver combined for the first seven points of the half, building the lead to 39–21. While Gabe Lloyd and Dallas Holmes got Southwood on the board, by the next time the Knights scored again in the second half, the Vikings had emptied their bench and led by nearly 30 points.

“I think the fact that we (only scored four points) in the third quarter mentally kind of brought us down a notch in the fourth quarter,” Burrus said. “Huntington North, their defense is really good. I think the second half, it just showed youth. We played a decent first half. Holding them to 56, they were playing pretty fast tonight. Normally, they’re a little bit more patient throughout the quarters. They went at us and attacked us and they still scored 56. If we put up a normal number of 40 to 50 (points), that looks like a different game. But, our offensive woes, they were just magnified.

“There’s going to be some nights like this but Huntington North’s really good,” Burrus added. “I think they proved that tonight. To come in on the road and play that well in the second, especially defensively, that’s what they hang their hat on is their defense and it showed tonight.”

For the Vikings, an emphasis on getting to the rim and taking advantage of their size when not in transition proved fruitful on the night.

“If we didn’t have it transition-wise, we wanted to take, for the most part, nothing but twos because we felt like we had the size advantage,” Teagle said. “So, let’s go to our strength. We didn’t need to shoot three.”

Defensively, Huntington North’s focus on the Knights centered around Rich, who scored 30 points in the Knights’ opening game against Wapahani, and Holmes, the lone returning starter from last season’s state runner-up side.

“I think we just did a better job of taking (Carson Rich’s) left hand away from him,” Teagle said. “All of his shots and points in the first half aside from one was on (the left side) of the floor. So, we were like ‘Just don’t let him come this way. Make him beat you the other way.’ And then we did a better job on the Holmes kid. He’s great at getting into the paint and spinning. We were bringing over and trying to take the spin away, which helped.

“We got fortunate, too, and they didn’t hit some shots. It’s the game of basketball.”

Stoltz finished with 24 points and 14 rebounds while Hank Pulver had 12 points and nine rebounds. Zach Daugherty had seven points, five rebounds and two assists while Deven Newcomb stuffed the stat sheet with three points, three rebounds, three assists and five steals.

Southwood, meanwhile, saw Holmes finish with 15 points while Rich added 10. Lloyd had the other two points for the Knights.

“I told them in there if we’re on a trip to California, we just got through New York City,” Burrus said. “We’ve got a long way to go. We’re replacing a lot of minutes and a lot of key positions out there that have been gobbled up for three or four years. There’s going to be some learning.

“I liked how we came out. We came out in the first quarter, it’s 15–11. We just are going to have to find a way to extend that to another quarter and get to the fourth quarter where we still have a chance and then we don’t have to go out here and scramble and then they get easy baskets,” Burrus added. “Our formula here has been to get a lead and get your defense back and really make it hard for teams to score. Well, we did that late in the game but we were down 25 by then.”

Southwood (0–2) will travel to Northfield next Friday. Huntington North (2–1) hosted Warsaw on Saturday but results were unavailable as of time of print. The Vikings will open Northeast 8 Conference play on the road next Saturday at East Noble.


Huntington North Vikings vs Southwood Knights

11/30/2018 at Wabash

Huntington North 56, Southwood 27

Huntington North

Sawyer Stoltz 9–13, 6–10, 24; Hank Pulver 6–13, 0–1, 12; Zach Daugherty 2–8, 3–4, 7; Keegan Bartrom 2–4, 0–0, 5; Deven Newcomb 1–3, 0–1, 3; Sam Thompson 1–1, 0–0, 3; Mitchell Gerber 1–1, 0–0, 2; Adam Zahn 0–1, 0–0, 0; Brett Kaylor 0–1, 0–0, 0; Trey Williams 0–2, 0–0, 0; Garrett Trout 0–0, 0–0, 0; Jordan Hollowell 0–1, 0–0, 0; Aiden Hosler 0–0, 0–0, 0; Totals 22–48, 9–16, 56.


Dallas Holmes 6–21, 2–2, 15; Carson Rich 4–14, 1–2, 10; Gabe Lloyd 1–3, 0–0, 2; Quentin Perry 0–3, 0–0, 0; Jackson Simons 0–4, 0–0, 0; Logan Barley 0–1, 0–0, 0; Luke Winer 0–2, 0–0, 0; Chase Lopez 0–0, 0–0, 0; Dawson Filip 0–0, 0–0, 0; Braden Barney 0–1, 0–0, 0; Alex Farr 0–0, 0–0, 0; Totals 11–49, 3–4, 27.

Huntington North' 15' 17' 14' 10' 56

Southwood' 11' 10' 4' 2' 27

Three-point goals: Huntington North 3–13 (Keegan Bartrom 1–3; Deven Newcomb 1–2; Sam Thompson 1–1; Adam Zahn 0–1; Hank Pulver 0–1; Brett Kaylor 0–1; Trey Williams 0–2; Zach Daugherty 0–2), Southwood 2–14 (Dallas Holmes 1–8; Carson Rich 1–1; Gabe Lloyd 0–2; Quentin Perry 0–2; Logan Barley 0–1). Fouled out: Huntington North None, Southwood None. Rebounds: Huntington North 46 (Sawyer Stoltz 14), Southwood 24 (Jackson Simons 5; Luke Winer 5). Assists: Huntington North 11 (Deven Newcomb 3), Southwood 1 (Quentin Perry 1). Total Fouls: Huntington North 11, Southwood 16.