South Vermillion’s Wildcats have struggled at playing 32 minutes of mentally tough basketball this season. The struggle ended Tuesday night in the opening game of the Class 3A boys high school basketball sectional at Greencastle High School.

The Edgewood Mustangs survived South Vermillion’s fast start and pulled away to a 57-35 victory that ended the Wildcats’ season. South Vermillion closed at 5-17.

So Friday night the West Vigo Vikings (11-11) play the Edgewood Mustangs (7-14) in the 6 p.m. game of the Greencastle Sectional. And it will be the Greencastle Tiger Cubs (13-8) against the Owen Valley Patriots in the second semifinal game.

Greencastle’s 6-foot-8 senior Jesse Tesmer scored with less than a second on the clock to give the Tiger Cubs a 66-65 victory over Brown County on Tuesday night.

South Vermillion jumped out to an 8-4 lead, then Edgewood responded with a 10-0 run that all but ended the Wildcats’ season.

“The mental aspect we have struggled with all year long," South Vermillion coach Michael Byrum said after his first season came to a close. "We’ve been very inconsistent with that. We got up 8-4, then started missing some shots and maybe a couple of turnovers here and there. Then we got down, they started making some shots and made a run and we couldn’t overcome that."

South Vermillion’s Josh Vaughan closed his high school basketball career with a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds. Freshman Jordan Branz scored eight points and had two steals in his first sectional game.

Vaughan was South Vermillion’s only double-figure scorer as Edgewood held senior center Phillip Harpenau to just seven points, 11 below his average.

“[Edgewood] did a great job [of defending Harpenau]. They came ready to play,” Byrum said.

Edgewood’s outside-inside combination of James Ridge and Trevor Selburg tallied 39 points. Ridge netted a game-high 26 points, hitting 5-10 from 3-point range, while Selburg had 13 points and seven rebounds under the basket.

South Vermillion jumped out to an 8-4 lead on Edgewood and had control of the contest. Harpenau scored two layups off passes from Kam Weyrauch and Kaden Lawson. Lawson hit a 3-point bucket to give the Wildcats an 8-4 lead with 3:10 to play in the opening quarter.

Then Edgewood’s Brandon Owens scored and the Mustangs jumped into a full-court press. The Wildcats committed back-to-back turnovers and the Mustangs were off to a 14-8 lead.

Byrum said the Wildcats have played better against the press late in the season, but that was not the case Tuesday. South Vermillion turned the ball over 13 times in the first half.

“Tonight we were out of synch and we struggled with the mental aspect. Just being mentally tough, that’s something we’ve got to be better at [next year],” Byrum said.

After a drought of 5 minutes and 12 seconds, South Vermillion’s Vaughan scored in the first minute of the second quarter. The Wildcats trailed just 14-10, but a minute later were down 21-10.

Edgewood built a 30-17 halftime lead and stretched the margin to 24 points in the third and fourth quarter.

South Vermillion shot 32 percent (15-46) from the floor and turned the ball over 21 times against Western Indiana Conference rival Edgewood.

Edgewood shot 45 percent (22-48), but hit 6 of 12 from 3-point range.

The loss ended the high school careers of Harpenau and Vaughan, leaving South Vermillion with 10 returnees.

“We gained a lot of experience this year,” Byrum said.

SOUTH VERMILLION (35) — Vaughan 5-11 0-0 10, Lawson 2-10 04- 5, Harpenau 3-11 0-0 7, Branz 3-5 0-0 8, Weyrauch 1-2 0-0 2, Waldrop 0-1 0-0 0, Spivey 0-1 0-0 0, Morgan 1-5 0-0 2, Sanders 0-0 1-2 1, Luft 0-0 0-0 0, Hines 0-0 0-0 0, Coulter 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 15-46 FG, 1-6 FT, 35 TP.

EDGEWOOD (58) — D. Driver 0-1 1-2 1, Owens 3-7 1-2 8, Selburg 6-12 1-1 13, Walls 4-5 2-4 10, Ridge 9-20 3-4 26, A. Driver 0-1 0-0 0, Collier 0-0 0-0 0, Harrison 0-0 0-0 0, Black 0-2 0-0 0, Settle 0-0 0-0 0, Fuller 0-0 0-0 0, Newman 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-48 FG, 8-13 FT, 58 TP.

South Vermillion    8    9    9    9    —    35

Edgewood    14    16    17    11    —    58

3Pt. Goals: SV 4-11 (Branz 2-3, Lawson 1-2, Harpenau 1-4, Weyrauch 0-1, Waldrop 0-1), Ew 6-12 (Ridge 5-10, Owens 1-1, D. Driver 0-1). Total fouls: SV 9, Ew 10. Fouled out: None. Turnovers: SV 21, Ew 11. Rebounds: SV 34 (Vaughan 10, Lawson 6, Weyrauch 6, Harpenau 5, Branz 3, Team 2*, Sanders 1, Waldrop 1), Ew 29 (Selburg 7, D.Driver 6, Black 4, Ridge 3, Walls 2, Owen 2, Team 2*, Harrison 1, Newman 1, A. Driver 1). Steals: SV 5 (Branz 2, Lawson 2, Vaughan 1), Ew 11 (Ridge 4, Selburg 4, Owens 2, Black 1).

Next — Edgewood (7-14) will play West Vigo (11-11) at 6 p.m. Friday in the Class 3A Greecastle Sectional. South Vermillion finished the season 5-17.

Trending Video

Recommended for you