News From Terre Haute, Indiana

High School

March 8, 2014

Clay City wins third straight sectional

SWITZ CITY — Clay City, the two-time defending champion of the IHSAA Class A Sectional No. 57, took the floor at White River Valley High School with a chip on its shoulder Saturday night.

The Eels lost to Bloomfield 26-21 in the Greene County Invitational back in January. The score is settled and then some.

Clay City jumped out to a 13-point lead in the opening quarter and rolled to a 63-43 victory over Bloomfield that was not, as the cliché goes, as close as the final score.

Clay City (18-6) dominated from start to finish en route to its third straight sectional title and a trip to the Class A Martinsville Regional next Saturday.

“We felt like we had something to prove. The second time we played [Bloomfield] here in the Greene County [Invitational], we didn’t play very well. They had a lot to do with that. Their zone [defense] kind of befuddled us and I take a lot of the blame [for that] because I slowed down instead of turning us loose and letting us get up and down in transition. We talked [about it] this week. I wasn’t going to be a factor in this. It was going to be the boys and they came out and did what we ask them to do and did a great job tonight,” Clay City coach Vance Edmondson said.

Clay City guard Easton Booe dribbled into and through the Bloomfield defense for a game-high 19 points, without attempting a 3-point shot.

“That’s what [Booe’s] strength is, is getting to the rim. And obviously that comes from match-up problems [for opponents]. We can put four guards out there, or sometimes five, you better have people who can defend or we’re going to spread you out and take you to the hole, and we did that tonight and Easton did a great job putting the ball in the basket,” Edmondson said.

And it was a balanced Clay City attack that ended Bloomfield’s season. Trevor Singer had 17 points, Evans Rogers 12 and Logan Cesinger tallied nine. Center Josh Miller, the only senior on the Clay City sectional roster, had two points and two steals.

Bloomfield was led by senior Kyle Robinson with 16 points and eight rebounds and sophomore Brandon Van Sant with 15 points and seven rebound.

Clay City picked apart Bloomfield’s zone defense and controlled the tempo from beginning to end. At the same time, Clay City’s sagging and switching man-to-man had the Cardinals puzzled.

“We’ve done a great job on the defensive end about getting stops and that in turn gets us some easy shots, transition baskets going the other way,” Edmondson said.

Bloomfield scored the first points of the game on a pair of Robinson free throws and Clay City the next 11.

The Eels’ Cesinger netted two, Singer drained a 3 from the top of the key and followed with a layup and Booe scored two field goals to put the Eels up 11-2 four minutes into the contest.

In that same four minutes, Bloomfield was 0 for 6 from the floor. Van Sant hit a 3 for the Cardinals’ first field goal with 3:45 left in the opening quarter.

A buzzer-beater 3 by Rogers gave Clay City a 21-8 lead going into the second quarter and that gave the Eels a huge advantage. Edmondson was just hoping for a lead going into the fourth quarter.

“It was huge. We got that lead early and then things started rolling and we made shots. Then it was just a matter of getting stops and shortening up the game with our press and making that clock run,” Edmondson said.

Clay City took a commanding 32-14 lead into halftime and extended the margin to 43-16 when Cesinger made a diving steal and passed the ball to Rogers for a layup, plus a free throw, with 4:21 to play in the third period.

The Eels took a 49-23 lead into the fourth quarter and continued to run the clock and attack.

Now the Eels will play the noon regional game at Martinsville. The Eels are 0-2 on the John R. Wooden Court.

“We just got to keep doing what we’re doing right now, stay focused and have a good week of practice and be prepared,” Edmondson said.

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