Special to the Tribune-Star
Terre Haute North got off to a slow start on the offensive end of the court Friday night, but the defense the Patriots played from the start was the key to a 46-27 nonconference victory over host Mooresville.
North hit just 3-of-12 shots in the opening quarter against Mooresville’s zone defense, but still led 7-3 and opened up a 24-12 halftime lead on the host. The Patriots warmed up to 50 percent (17-of-34) from the field for the game, but it was that defense that stood out.
“I was really pleased with the way we defended the entire night and that was the key to the game because we didn’t shoot the ball well early against their zone [defense]. But we were able to maintain the lead because of our activity and really locked in on the defensive end,” North coach Todd Woelfle said.
Calvin Blank was North’s only double-figure scorer with 10 points. Casey Vickers netted eight points for the Patriots.
In fact, Blank and Mooresville’s Jacob Johnson, a 6-6 junior, were the only double-figure scorers in the game. Johnson, who started the night averaging 26 points per game, netted just 13 points on 5 of 14 shooting on his home court. As a team, Mooresville shot 27 percent (9 of 33) from the floor.
“We hold [Johnson] 13 below his average and we contain the other guys pretty well. Anytime you hold [a team] to 27 points in a varsity basketball game that’s a total team effort,” Woelfle said.
North had to fight foul trouble most of the game. Blank and Austin Lewis were in foul trouble in the second period. The Patriots were called for their sixth team foul with 1:06 left in the first half.
At the other end of the court, the Pioneers played the first half without a personal foul. Mooresville had more technical fouls (one on bench) than personal fouls at halftime. The Pioneers were called for their first personal foul of the night with 3:19 left in the third period.
A three-pointer by Nathan Jahn put North ahead 22-12 with 1:40 left in the second period and when the Patriots got the ball back with a minute left Woelfle called for one shot. A driving reverse layup by Steven Davis gave the Patriots a 24-12 halftime lead.
North opened the second half with an 8-3 run, started by a Davis 3-pointer. Blank hit a deuce and then found Jahn open for another three and the Patriots were up 32-15 with 5:55 left in the quarter.
North did not score again in the period. Despite going scoreless for 5 minutes and 55 seconds, the Patriots still led 32-25 going into the fourth quarter.
That was a close as Mooresville got to North. A.J. Grady opened the fourth quarter with a three-point play and with tight defense and patience on offense, North stretched the lead to 19 points.
North travels to Evansville Harrison on Saturday.
TERRE HAUTE NORTH (46) – Davis 3-9 0-0 7, Lewis 2-2 0-0 4, Blank 4-11 2-3 10, Vickers 2-2 2-2 8, Jahn 2-6 1-2 7, Low 1-3 0-0 3, Grady 2-2 1-1 5, Hart 1-2 0-0 2. Totals 17-34 FG 6-8 FT, 46 TP.
MOORESVILLE (27) – Johnson 5-15 1-3 13, Weaver 0-3 0-0 0, Hibler 1-2 0-0 2, Sanborn 0-1 0-0 0, Hurt 3-11 1-2 9, Suter 0-1 3-4 3. Totals 9-33 FG, 5-9 FT, 27 TP.
Terre Haute North 7 17 8 14 — 46
Mooresville 3 9 13 2 — 27
3Pt. Goals: THN 6-19 (Vickers 2-2, Jahn 2-5, Low 1-3, Davis 1-5, Blank 0-4), Mv 4-12 (Johnson 2-5, Hurt 2-6, Weaver 0-1). Total fouls: THN 11, Mv 15. Fouled out: None. Technical fouls: Mooresville bench. Turnovers: THN 9, Mv 8. Rebounds: THN 28 (Blank 7, Lewis 7), Mv 14 (Weaver, Hibler 6). Steals: THN 2 (Davis, Blank), Mv 3 (Johnson, Weaver, Sanborn).
JV — North won 56-51.
Next — Terre Haute North (4-2) travels to Evansville Harrison today and Mooresville (1-3) will host Edgewood today.