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MELEE
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Officials jump into a melee between Crawford County and Corydon Central players at the beginning of the second quarter. Fouls were assessed on both teams. Photo by Wade Bell

Corydon rips Crawford, 70-40


January 20, 2010
The rivalry between the Corydon Central Panthers and Crawford County Wolfpack hasn't waned over the last few years. If anything, it has grown in intensity.

Crawford County vs. Corydon
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"It was a war here two years ago, and we beat them in a double overtime in a war there last year in the same kind of game," Crawford County coach Mike Brown said. "It's the same intensity every time you play."

That intensity was back Saturday night with new heights as the Panthers leveled the host Wolfpack, 70-40.

"It's always an intense game," Corydon coach Jamie Kolkmeier said.

Corydon didn't waste any time taking control of the game, beginning with a 9-0 run. Crawford County finally got on the board with 3:29 left in the first quarter when Jonathon Bowles swished a pair of free throws. Corydon made a slight gain, but the Wolfpack countered. At the end of the quarter, the Panthers held a 17-8 advantage.

Then came the beginning of the second quarter when things got out of control. With Corydon on defense, Crawford County's Andrew Curl and Corydon's Tyler Shewmaker and Casey Saulman went to the deck entwined in a skirmish for rebound. Players from both teams went to the ensuing melee as officials dove into group to try to restore order. No technicals were called, but both teams were assessed fouls and shot free throws.

"It got wild because the officials let it get wild," Brown said. "If you call it tight, it doesn't get that wild. They kept telling me they were going to tighten it up, but they never did."

"I thought we kept our composure fairly well," Kolkmeier said. "It almost got away from us at times."

Brown made it clear, however, the officials did not determine the outcome of the game.

"The referees did not cost us this game," he said. "This game was won by Corydon. We tried hard. They had a lot to do with why we didn't look that good, and they won the game. It just could have been a lot cleaner and a lot better played game if it would have been officiated a little better."

Jordan Newkirk was called for goaltending on the next play with Dylan Harl given credit for the basket, and Corydon had a 19-8 lead. The Wolfpack soon found themselves in more foul trouble with Newkirk, Jarret Denzinger and Jonathon Bowles all being called for their third fouls in the period. By halftime, the Panthers were holding a 39-20 advantage.

"I thought Ryan Coffman came in and played a great game and Tyler Shewmaker came in and gave us some really nice minutes," Kolkmeier said. "We got him going at the beginning. Dylan Harl, he really helped us keep our composure."

Brown said Corydon's five three-pointers in the first half were something his team wanted to avoid.

"When we let them hit that many threes to start the game and then we come up dry on our first six or seven possessions … you're asking for trouble when you have a start like that," he said.

Crawford County worked to cut its deficit to 13 in the third period, but Brandon Dunaway lit up the nets again with back-to-back three-balls. That started a 14-2 run that pushed the Corydon lead to 51-32. It was a run Crawford County never recovered from, as the Panthers got the 70-40 win.

"I thought defensively we still had our lapses, but we probably had less of them tonight than we've had," Kolkmeier said. "We're trying to make strides and we're playing a little bit better overall."

"It wasn't a lack of effort on our part," Brown said. "We just did not get things done early and got behind. From that point on, we're trying to catch them instead of staying in front of them. They're a good basketball team."

Dunaway led all scorers with 31 of Corydon's points. Garett Ross added 17 points, and Coffman came off the bench for 10. The Panthers were 21 of 47 (45 percent) from the field and 21 of 35 from the charity stripe. Corydon had 17 turnovers.

"Brandon got on a roll there the second half," Kolkmeier said. "He can be tough to guard."

"We got in so much trouble early with fouls, Jordan would have been our guy to guard (Dunaway)," Brown said. "When we can't put him on him, now we're at a size disadvantage. He can post up our guards and he can bring our big men out. That is going to be trouble for us."

Curl and Alex Baker led Crawford County (5-5, 1-1) with seven points each. The Wolfpack, who connected on just 14 of 43 (33 percent) field-goal attempts and 10 of 19 free throws, committed 21 turnovers.

"It was a night where everything went well for them and I thought they played well and shot the ball well," Brown said. "Nothing went well for us. You're going to have those occasionally. We haven't had them very much. The question is how we respond to that."

"All we wanted is to try to get better each and every night," Kolkmeier said. "We were better tonight than we were last night (against Madison). … I'm proud of them. They came out and played hard."

"We played two pretty good basketball teams this weekend that are both going to have really good seasons," Brown said, referring to Crawford County's 60-51 loss to Orleans Friday night. "Both are favorites to win their sectional. We can't lose sight of the fact that we played some pretty good competition. What we have to do is realize, if we want to be better than that competition, we've got to make sure that we have a heck of a week of practice and continue to get better."

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