Terre Haute South senior Jeffrey Turner had his own cheering section in the bleachers at Indianapolis Arlington in boys high school basketball Tuesday night.
And when he scored his 1,000th career point in the first quarter, there were plenty of cheers.
There wasn’t much else for Braves’ fans to cheer after that.
After spotting Turner a couple of early free throws, the Golden Knights surged out to a comfortable lead in a 79-67 victory.
Arlington (3-4) snapped a four-game losing streak by dominating South (3-5) on the boards.
“Their size really hurt us,” South coach Scott Ridge said.
“They dominated us inside in the paint and on the offensive boards.
“We weren’t getting any stops, then we weren’t making any shots and we got in a hole early.”
Arlington outrebounded South 39-21, with two Golden Knights, Jerron Dewalt and Jrai Owens, each grabbing 10 rebounds.
Ridge knew his team would be challenged by Arlington’s size. But he still had hoped for a better performance.
“We’re small, but we just didn’t fight hard enough,” he said.
“Our kids have got to fight harder for every rebound, we’ve got to have everyone in there fighting for a rebound.
“We had a couple guys standing out on the perimeter and we’re leaving 6-foot guys to go one-on-one with a 6-6 kid and we’re losing the battle.”
Arlington’s rebounding edge, especially on offense, gave the Golden Knights plenty of second shots all night. The Braves weren’t so lucky.
The Knights led 19-10 after one quarter, then effectively put the game away in the second to take a 43-21 halftime lead.
The advantage would swell to as many as 30 points in the third before the Braves battled back. Turner scored 20 of his game-high 32 points in the fourth quarter. He didn’t play in the second quarter.
“He came in the second half and gave us some good scoring that we needed,” Ridge said.
“That’s one positive note we can take out of this, Jay got his 1,000th career point,” Ridge said. “I feel bad that it came on a night that was so disappointing in every other phase.
“That’s a great career accomplishment and something he’s worked hard for, something he can be proud of. Unfortunately we don’t feel so good about it tonight because we played so poorly.”
Kevaris Gregory added 11 points for the Braves, who don’t play again until the Wabash Valley Classic.
Owens scored 24, Dewalt had 20 points, Rayshawn Baxter scored 14 and Justin Vinciguerra added 13 points for the Golden Knights.