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Crawford jolts Rangers in OT

Allen, Roberts lead power surge

January 07, 2009
Electrical problems in the Ron Ferguson Gymnasium at Crawford County Junior-Senior High School forced a 30-minute delay Saturday night in the Wolfpack's game against Forest Park. Nearly a thousand feet of extension cords were spread out allowing the necessary functions to operate so the game could continue.

Crawford County's Kyle Roberts (55) had a career night with 18 points in the Wolfpack's 71-60 overtime win over visiting Forest Park. (Photo by Wade Bell)
All the school really needed to do was simply plug into the Wolfpack basketball team, who came out supercharged in the second half and rallied from a double-digit deficit to grab a 71-60 overtime win.

"It's a big win for a lot of reasons," Crawford coach Mike Brown said. "It's a tradition-rich basketball program with a lot of success, good players, good coaches. It's good on that level.

"It's very good for us because we've been in so many of these so early in the season," he continued. "It's our third overtime in a row. We went two overtimes with Silver Creek, one with (Northeast) Dubois, and then this one tonight. We were in a last-second shot game at Heritage Hills right before that."

Crawford got off to a sluggish start, hitting just 2 of its 12 field goal attempts in the first quarter as Forest Park took a 13-7 lead.

Forest Park's advantage jumped to 26-13 in the second quarter as the Wolfpack hit just 4 of 12 field goals, while the Rangers were shooting well from downtown, swishing five three-pointers in the first half.

Crawford did make up a little ground late, hitting 5 of 8 from the charity stripe to cut its deficit to 29-21 at halftime.

"We played behind the big guy (6-8 Jordan Myers) early and the twos weren't hurting us as much as the threes," Brown said of Myers, who knocked down two three's in the first half. "If he got an occasional two, we weren't worried. We were upset that he got those threes the first half, because we didn't want to give him those. We knew he could hit them."

After the break, the Wolfpack came out looking like they had plugged themselves into a transformer. Daniel Allen drilled a three, and Kyle Roberts got a deuce-and-one.

Crawford continued what would be an 18-4 run for a 38-35 advantage. The Rangers, however, bounced back with six straight points to finish the period with a 41-39 lead.

Kyle Wilgus began the fourth quarter with a Ranger deuce, but the Wolfpack countered with a 9-3 and a 47-46 lead.

The Rangers got the next four, but Roberts answered with a three to tie the game at 50. The two teams finished out the quarter scoring six points each to send the game into overtime.

Crawford struck first with a Dustin Bowling free throw, but Wilgus tied with a freebie of his own.

Allen then buried a three to ignite a 9-0 firestorm as the Wolfpack took a 66-57 lead. Myers nailed a three to try to spark the Rangers, but those were the last points Forest Park saw as Crawford went on for the 71-60 win.

"Tonight, I thought scoring first in the overtime was big," Brown said. "In the previous ones we played, the other teams got the tip and got that first basket, and it makes it tough on us then because we have to score. I thought getting ahead helped us some."

Allen led the Wolfpack with 21 points, and Roberts had a career-high 18. Bowling followed with 13 points. Crawford was 21 of 44 (47 percent) from the field, 28 of 43 from the free-throw line, and committed just 11 turnovers.

"I just got into it, and I just wanted to win so bad because here lately we've been right there and coming so close," Roberts said. "I just felt like we need to beat them because they're a good team and ranked four or five in the state. It's just what we needed, and I just wanted to get my team there."

"He had enough energy for all of us out there on a lot of possessions tonight," Brown said. "He's been playing well through these first six games. We thought he's going to have a night where it's all going to fall for him. None of it was given to him. He earned every bit of it."

"If we get three post guys playing like he is, how good are we going to be then?" Brown said. "Of all the guys he's played against, tonight is the toughest job he's had so far just because of the size and the skill of (Myers). … Kyle made all the big plays we needed to make defensively. He made a lot of deflections and mishaps occur that he's not going to get the steal for, but he's the one who caused them."

Myers led Forest Park with 24 points, and Nathan Bromm finished with 13. The Rangers canned 23 of 49 field goals (47 percent) and 16 of 22 free throws and made 15 turnovers.

"I've felt like we were due to get over the hump," the Crawford coach said. "We've felt like we were robbed in a couple of situations because we didn't make the plays we needed to win those other games. Tonight, that's what we talked the most about during the overtimes, 'Relax and play and take the game to them. Don't sit back and expect it to happen, because it may not.'

"Hopefully, we'll get a lot out of that because kids are impressionable and when they win a big one like this, you want them to savor it and put it away, and when the time comes again you know that you can get it done."

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The Wolfpack (3-4, 0-1 Patoka Lake Athletic Conference) will host conference foe Springs Valley Friday night and then visit Salem Saturday night.

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