TERRE HAUTE —
Sometimes the twain doesn’t meet.
West Vigo’s girls basketball team had its highest win total (five) entering its annual matchup with Terre Haute North since the 2000-01 season.
It would seem it was the best chance for West Vigo to beat its county rival in over decade, but for one thing ... North entered the game with its best record in the same time period.
In the end, history had little to do with it. North’s size and defensive speed were too much for the Vikings as North earned a 53-34 victory.
West Vigo certainly had belief this was their year against North. The Vikings lost to the Patriots 45-22 at the Terre Haute Savings Bank Tipoff Classic in November, but had gone 4-2 since.
“We fully expected to come across the river and win a basketball game. We truly did, but we didn’t play like it,” West Vigo coach Ryan Easton said. “They were way better than us tonight. I thought we were ready. They did a lot better. I don’t know.”
Adrienne Pritchard led North with 18 points on 7-of-8 shooting. The senior also had 12 rebounds and four blocked shots. Jennifer Bendickson had 14 and was 4-for-4 from 3-point range. Lexus Elkins paced the Vikings with 11 points.
North did a lot of things right, but what it did first was break West Vigo’s defensive resistance. The Patriots got five easy buckets — four by Pritchard and another by another North mainstay Layne Curley — in the first four minutes of the contest to take 11-2 lead.
“We took them out of their game a little bit. We put some pressure on the ball. We knew coach Easton would have them ready to be physical and aggressive. We were just able to take that away from them,” North coach Mike Allen said. “We executed our offense and shot the ball pretty well.”
The inability to stop some of the Patriots’ best-known scorers stuck in Easton’s craw.
“The scouting report said help on good shooters. They’re all good shooters. We let people get loose we knew not to. North did a very nice job. When you don’t do a good job it makes it look worse than it really is,” Easton said.
North used its full-court pressure defense at times, but the Vikings were victimized by the quick hands of North’s guards in its half-court set as much as anything else.
Curley was particularly troublesome. The North senior had three first-quarter steals. It comprised a third of West Vigo’s nine first period turnovers as the Patriots’ advantage was 18-9 by the end of the first period.
Pritchard, who has a four-inch advantage over any Viking, was also on-task for the Patriots. She scored 16 in the first half, including a 3-pointer late in the half. North had a 35-13 halftime lead.
West Vigo outscored North in both second half quarters, but by then, it was in too deep of a hole to dig out of.
North will continue to be dangerous as it has the post-driver-shooter combination in Pritchard, Curley and Bendickson. Sierra Sykes, the fourth senior in North’s starting lineup, is also more than capable.
“On any given night, the four seniors have scored close to 20. For us to be successful, we need two or three to fill the void on a night when someone else isn’t scoring,” Allen said.
Both teams have conference games on Saturday. North hosts Ben Davis in a Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference tilt while West Vigo travels to Brown County for a Western Indiana Conference contest.
TERRE HAUTE —
Sometimes the twain doesn’t meet.
- High School
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Gold surprises Black 35-12 in WVFCA All-Star Game
A dozen players from Terre Haute North were hoping that Saturday night’s Wabash Valley Football Coaches Association All-Star Game at Memorial Stadium would put a fitting exclamation point on their historic 2013 high school season.
But there were four other smaller schools in the Valley that also had excellent seasons, and Brian Oliver drafted all of them.
“I’m a coach at a small school,” said the Linton coach, whose first year resulted in an Indiana Class A semistate appearance and earned him the right to be an all-star coach opposite North’s Chris Barrett, “and I picked [Casey, North Vermillion and North Central, among others] because I know how much heart those schools play with.
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The third week in June has become an unofficial reunion for members of the Wabash Valley Football Coaches Association, who make their way to Indiana State’s Memorial Stadium to swap stories and coach — officially or unofficially — the two all-star teams for the Saturday game.
Terre Haute North has taken the concept one step further this week, however.
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Thompson leaves big legacy in TH swimming
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This time, Shakamak coach is really retiring
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Sullivan 12th heading into today’s final round of boys golf state finals
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Columbus North was the leader at the conclusion of 18 holes and Sullivan is 12th going into the final round to be played today with tee times beginning at 8 a.m.
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Prep/Metro roundup: Hambrock named to all-state tennis team
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IHSAA baseball game times set
Game times set for IHSAA state baseball finals.
Shakamak tops Rivet in pitchers' duel to advance to Victory Field
When your name is Yeryar, Shakamak High School expects great things on the baseball diamond. Vincennes Rivet dodged Brett Yeryar intentionally walking him. But Rivet had to face Braxton and pitch to Tanner and their performances lifted the Lakers to a 1-0 victory and into the Class A state championship game.
Braxton Yeryar pitched a three-hit shutout and Tanner Yeryar singled up the middle in the eighth inning to drive in Kyler Fulford with the game-winning run.
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If Terre Haute North becomes the Class 4A state champion a week from now — and who would bet against the Patriots at this point? — there’s one prediction that might be safe: it won’t be a typical, run-of-the-mill high school baseball game that makes it happen.
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IU recruit lights up Kentucky for 41 points in All-Star win
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Sullivan boys, South's Drew Cahill qualify for state golf finals
Sullivan’s team and two players from the area extended their high school boys golf season by two days with their play on the links on Thursday.
The Arrows placed third to qualify for the state finals Tuesday and Wednesday, and Alec Davis of Greencastle and Drew Cahill of Terre Haute South qualified as individuals in the Washington Regional played at Country Oaks in warm, mostly sunny conditions.
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Not exactly earth-shaking news, but not exactly the usual reasons either.
Climbing the ladder: Gutish skips memorable weekend in TH for X Games
Did Rachel Gutish feel bad that she missed the IHSAA girls track and field state finals Friday after she had qualified in the pole vault? Absolutely. Did the Terre Haute North athletic standout feel bad that she missed her high school’s graduation ceremony Saturday? Ehhh, not so much.
- More High School Headlines
- Ex-Brave Johnson happy to welcome back ex-Patriots