News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Sports

January 12, 2013

Patriots able to pull away from Vikings

TERRE HAUTE — Far as it was from a high school basketball masterpiece, Friday night’s 42-31 win for host Terre Haute North over West Vigo at least left both head coaches with something positive.

For Todd Woelfle and the Patriots, it was the outcome.

“We found a way to win the basketball game, that’s the most important thing,” Woelfle said. “We got back on the winning track, and that’s something we desperately needed for our confidence.”

For Joe Boehler and the Vikings, it was the mindset.

“We talked about coming over and competing every possession and letting the score take care of itself,” Boehler said afterward, “and I felt we competed the entire game.”

The Vikings not only competed, but they also made shots early. After North had taken a 10-4 lead on five straight points by Nate Jahn, the visitors closed out the first quarter with three 3-pointers — two by Adrien Corenflos that tied the score, then a buzzer-beater by Cade Lindsey.

West Vigo had two five-point leads early in the second quarter, on a layup and two free throws by Kyle Stewart that made the score 15-10 and then 17-12. But Stewart’s layup was West Vigo’s last field goal until a desperation 30-footer by Lance Stonebarger that ended the third quarter, and the Vikings compounded their woes by missing six straight free throws during that stretch.

North finished the first half on an 8-1 run, finally regaining the lead at 20-18 on Jahn’s runner in the lane at 1:03. The Patriots also outscored West Vigo 10-1 in the third quarter, getting their lead up to 30-19 before Stonebarger’s 3-pointer. Two baskets by A.J. Grady opened the fourth period and gave North a 34-22 advantage, and the Vikings were within 10 on only one more occasion the rest of the way.

Calvin Blank had game-high totals of 14 points and nine rebounds for North, but Jahn and Grady provided perhaps an unexpected 15 points between them that proved huge. “A.J. gave us a good lift in the second half,” Woelfle noted, “and Nate did too.”

Corenflos led West Vigo with 13 points while Stewart had 11. Corenflos and Lindsey combined for 13 rebounds.

North’s defense held the Vikings to 29-percent shooting from the field. Boehler would have taken that, however, if his team had been better than 7 for 16 at the foul line.

“Free throws kind of killed us,” he said. “It probably could have come right down to the wire if we’d shot better at the free throw line.”

“Our effort on both ends was pretty good,” Woelfle acknowledged, “but our execution was not always there. If we get those two things going together, we have a chance to be a good basketball team.”

“Even with the loss, this was one of the best games we’ve played, beginning to end,” Boehler said. “I think our kids will leave here with their heads up a little bit … and if we continue to get performance like that every single night, good things can happen.”

n Injury update — North’s defensive stopper Austin Lewis, whose slashing ability has also been missed offensively, was unavailable for a second straight game after suffering a knee injury against Marshall in the Pizza Hut Wabash Valley Classic, but promised he’d be ready for next weekend’s games against Warren Central and Bedford North Lawrence.

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