By Rob Lee
For The Lebanon Reporter
After Crawfordsville’s win over Fountain Central earlier in the week and Crawfordsville head girls basketball coach Tony Thomas reiterated to his team due to circumstances this would be the CHS team against top-ranked Lebanon.
But it was the Tigers who came together after a loss to Westfield Wednesday. At the end Lebanon was too much in the Sagamore Athletic Conference rivalry 76-29.
“We just need to work in practice and work harder,” Crawfordsville guard Lacy Garrett said. “That was a fast-paced game and we have to learn how to do that in practice.”
Shelby Haggard and Spencer Funk still are not available for Crawfordsville due to injury.
Thomas said it is a learning process for his Athenians.
“After the game we were sitting around the locker room talking through this,” Thomas said. “With Lebanon you see five kids doing all the right things at all the right times. We have to walk away with lessons to be learned.”
Lebanon went on a 12-0 run during the final portion of the first quarter to erase a brief CHS lead and led 22-13 after a quarter.
The Tigers led by 18 at the half and put the game away in the third quarter, out-scoring Crawfordsville 30-6.
“We wanted to slow the game down defensively,” Thomas said. “They still found the gaps and crashed the boards.”
Lebanon out-rebounded CHS 51-30.
Freshman sensation Kristen Spolyar led Lebanon with 21 points.
Katie Curtis scored 15 points and Carly Greene was also in double figures with 14 points.
The Tigers made the same amount of shots as the Athenians attempted (35) and forced 29 turnovers.
Lebanon (5-1, 1-0 SAC) extended its winning streak against Sagamore Conference teams to 21 in the win.
The Tigers are back in action Tuesday when they travel north to face West Lafayette Harrison.
Tigers pull away from C’ville after first quarter
Crawfordsville — Jake Zurawski is the prototype of “length” coach David Pierce wants to utilize.
The Crawfordsville 6-foot-4 senior showed that in goal during the soccer season. He and his Athenian teammates looked to get back to that game plan against Lebanon.
It worked at first, but the No. 8 Tigers changed the plan and ran away with a 63-42 victory in the Athenian Gym.
CHS had things its way early jumping to an 11-1 advantage. Lebanon responded with an 18-3 run bridging the first two quarters.
“When we went up 11-1 we ran our offense, we doubled down on (Cord) Barricklow on defense and were successful,” Pierce said. “They made a substitution, hit some threes and we were done.”
Junior Noah Molter came off the Lebanon bench and drilled three treys from three different spots.
Lebanon hit 10-of-19 threes for the game. Molter was 4-5 and finished the game with 12 points.
Three Athenians all picked up two fouls by early second period.
“That’s what really hurt,” Pierce said. “We didn’t have someone that could help guard the post and jump out to get the three-point shooter.”
The CHS offense went cold as well, not even scoring in the second quarter until a Hank Horner basket at the 4:50 mark.
Lebanon stretched the advantage to 39-28 at the half and increased it each period after.
“That’s the way we were after the lead,” Pierce said. “We quit running the offense. We stood. We finally put it on the players during a timeout. We asked ‘what do you want to run? Run something.’ They did and we got a layup.”
Foul trouble became a hardship for the second consecutive game.
“We just have to be smarter on defense. There are good fouls, but we have to stop the hacking and ticky-tack ones and execute more.”
Hank Horner led CHS with 16 points. Shad Conrad grabbed five rebounds, but Lebanon dominated the boards 42-20 led by Barricklow’s 15.
Tiger Caleb Brannon topped all scorers with 18 and Barricklow added 10 points in the win.
Tre’ Comage scored nine points in the winning record.
The Tigers are now 2-0 and travel to face 1-1 Western.
Last season, the Tigers topped the Panthers 104-93 in triple overtime.