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Ball movement leads Cougs to end skid

February 18, 2009
North Harrison snapped an eight-game skid Thursday night, coming back from an early 10-point deficit to defeat Mid-Southern Conference foe Charlestown, 71-69, in boys' basketball.

"It was a good effort all night," North Harrison coach Chris Martin said. "We've not won a lot, and when you see you might win one, you start to feel the pressure of a close game. But they played well and found a way to win."

The game was back-and-forth until the Cougars opened a quick nine-point lead in the fourth quarter. Entering the final quarter up four, 55-51, Lincoln Jones and Chad Eveslage connected on consecutive field goals for the Cougars. Jarod Richards followed with a free throw, extending the Cougar lead to 60-51.

North Harrison maintained a 69-60 lead after Jones scored his sixth point of the game on a field goal. From there, Charlestown put in a valiant comeback bid.

Chad Brady, who finished with a game-best 31 points, drilled a 3-pointer to pull within six. Charlestown's Bryan Williams later hit a trey with 36 seconds remaining, to draw Charlestown closer at 70-69.

The Cougars then turned the ball over with 20 seconds to play, but Jones came up with a key defensive play near the end of regulation. The sophomore blocked a shot, saving the Cougar victory.

Offensively, North Harrison didn't have a problem finding the bottom of the net. As a team, the Cougars went 25 of 37 from the field for a solid 67 percent, leading to their largest scoring output of the season.

"Tonight, it was all about ball movement," Martin said. "We moved the ball real well, and we got the shots we wanted and made them."

North Harrison put 10 players in the scorebook, including three in double figures. Junior Devin Southard led in scoring with 16 points, followed by 12 from Eveslage and 11 from Dylan Janes.

Southard provided an instant spark off the bench in the first quarter when the Cougars trailed 12-2. Turning up the pressure in the backcourt, Southard came up with three steals to ignite a 13-0 run. During the run, the junior scored six points and dished an assist to Alex Edwards to put the host Cougars up, 15-12.

"Devin gave us a huge lift off the bench," Martin said. "If he plays within himself, he can be a really talented player."

Brady led Charlestown with 31 points, and Terry Crenshaw tallied 13.

North Harrison (3-15, 2-6 MSC) lost to Madison, 58-45, Saturday.

The Cougars, who played at Clarksville last night (Tuesday), have two games remaining, senior night Friday versus Providence and a trip to Paoli on Feb. 24.

"Your goal is to peak at the end of the season," Martin said. "We hope we're going to play our best ball at the end of the season."

Officials from the Charlestown game — Trent Seitzinger, Mike Pickens and Brett Decker — participated in "Calling for a Cure."

During the game, the officials used pink whistles in support of fellow official Carl March who was recently diagnosed with cancer. They also collected donations to be placed in the Carl March Fund, set up at Hoosier Hills Credit Union.

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