News From Terre Haute, Indiana


March 15, 2014

Eels' semifinal win is cause for celebration

Clay City beats Oldenburg

MARTINSVILLE, Ind. — Clay City fans celebrated the Eels’ 64-46 win over Oldenburg Academy like a championship early Saturday afternoon in the Class A Martinsville Regional for boys high school basketball.

The win only set up the championship game game with Greenwood Christian. But after the last two trips to the regional, a victory on John Wooden Court was cause for celebration.

Last year, the Eels shot 21 percent in a first-round loss to Jac-Cen-Del and, two years ago, they fell in overtime to Hauser 58-50.

But on Saturday, the Eels never trailed en route to their first regional game victory since 1974.

“[Winning a regional game] feels good. You wonder if that day is every going to come. But our guys were prepared to day and they played extremely well. I’m so happy for them and our community,” Clay City coach Vance Edmondson said.

A balanced offense, solid defense timely contributions from the bench were keys to the Eels’ 19th win of the season.

Evan Rogers and Trevor Singer led the Eels with 16 points each and Noah Denker came off the bench to score 12 points. Clay City won the rebounding battle 37-24 with Logan Cesinger grabbing eight, but four other Eels had five rebounds or more in the effort.

“I was so proud of our guys today the way they fought,” Edmondson said.

Oldenburg Academy (13-10) was led by sophomore guard Matt Moorman with 14 and junior Ted Geis with 10.

Everything fell into place for the Eels from the start. Josh Miller, Clay City’s only senior, scored a basket inside. Easton Booe put back a rebound for two and Miller netted a layup off a Cesinger pass to give the Eels an early 9-2 lead.

“We talked about wanting to play inside-out today and getting Josh those two early buckets [inside], I think they had to change their [defensive] approach a little bit and that was able to give [Evan] Rogers and Trevor [Singer] some good looks and they knocked them down,” Edmondson said.

After Miller’s opening two, Rogers, who last year couldn’t buy a basket, drain an open 3-pointer from the baseline.

“It was great to hit that first shot [after] not hitting one last year. It felt good to get one in and we just went from there,” Rogers said.

Singer hit three 3-pointers and a deuce to pace the Eels to a 20-11 lead after one quarter.

Foul trouble came into play for Clay City early. Booe picked up two quick fouls in the first quarter, then Singer was called for a second early in the second. That is when Denker and Myers stepped up for the Eels.

Myers had not been in the game a minute before he popped a 3 that gave the Eels a 23-12 lead. Denker closed the half with a basket to give Clay City a 35-21 halftime lead.

“We preached to them all year about being ready. You just never know when your number is going to be called and how many minutes you’re going to get. Paiden [Myers] did a great job. He hit a big 3 there, he got in on everything,” Edmondson.

As could be expected in a regional game, Oldenburg charged back in the third quarter. The Twisters got within eight, on a Moorman basket with 5:14 left in the period before the Eels’ Singer nailed a 3 and Cesinger put back a rebound that pushed the advantage back to 42-30.

But a 3 by Oldenburg’s Cory Schuman and two more from Moorman cut Clay City’s lead to 42-36 with 2:18 to play in the third quarter.

Clay City’s defense clamped down hard and Denker came up big. Denker hit two free throws and closed the third period with a 3 that started a game-deciding 17-3 run.

“That’s been Noah’s m.o. all year. He just kind of picks his spots and his opportunities. He doesn’t try to force too much and when it’s there he takes it. He’s been big for us all year and today was just another testament to how hard he plays,” Edmondson said.

Denker’s five-point spurt gave the Eels a 47-36 lead going into the fourth quarter. Then Booe, Rogers and Singer each hit two free throws in the opening 1:05 of the period, giving the Eels a 53-36 advantage. Denker added six more points and Rogers another free throw and the Eels were up 59-39 with 3:26 left in the game.

CLAY CITY (64) — Rogers 4-10 4-8 16, Singer 5-11 2-2 16, Miller 2-2 0-0 4, Cesinger 2-5 2-2 6, Booe 2-4 2-2 6, Denker 4-5 3-3 12, Myers 1-5 0-0 3, Ames 0-0 0-0 0, Yocom 0-0 0-0 0, Wolfe 0-1 0-0 0, Smith 0-0 1-2 1, Hyatt 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 20-43 FG, 15-19 FT, 64 TP.

OLDENBURG ACADEMY (46) — Moorman 5-16 4-5 14, Sarringhaus 1-7 0-0 3, Geis 3-3 4-8 10, Hurm 2-8 1-2 5, Schuman 2-6 1-2 7, Kloepfer 1-3 0-0 3, Hogg 0-0 2-2 2, Bischoff 0-1 0-0 0, Gramman 0-0 0-0 0, Mullen 1-2 0-0 2, Ahaus 0-0 0-0 0, Rose 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 15-46 FG, 12-19 FT, 46 TP.

Clay City                          20    15    12    17    --    64

Oldenburg Academy    11    10    15    10    --    46

3-point shooting — CC 9-22 (Singer 4-8, Rogers 3-7, Denker 1-2, Myers 1-3, Cesinger 0-1, Booe 0-1), OA 4-21 (Schuman 2-6, Kloepfer 1-3, Sarringhaus 1-7, Moorman 0-1, Bischoff 0-1, Mullen 0-1, Hurm 0-2). Total fouls — CC 17, OA 14. Fouled out — none. Turnovers — CC 11, OA 7. Rebounds — CC 37 (Cesinger 8), OA 24. Steals — CC 5 (Cesinger 2), OA 4 (Geis 2).

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