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Generals fend off Floyd rally, 43-41


December 05, 2012
Floyd Central got its first test of the season Tuesday night, Nov. 27, as it hosted the Clarksville Generals. The Highlanders spent a lot of the night playing catch up and had a late rally but came up just short, 43-41.

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Floyd Central’s Colton Kimm, center, shovels a pass to teammate Jackson Logsdon (15) as Clarksville’s Andrew Jones puts on the heat in the first half. Photo by Wade Bell
"We did some of the things, but nobody likes to lose," Floyd Central coach Randy Gianfagna said. "There wasn't a lot of smiles in there, but when you lose 80 percent or 95 percent of your offense from last year and they don't lose much, it's a big difference. It doesn't make us feel any better."

The first quarter began at a snail's pace, with the Highlanders getting off just four shots in the opening eight minutes and hitting three of them. Clarksville put up nine field goals and dumped in four of them, two of those three-bangers, for a 10-6 lead.

The pace of the second quarter was about as slow. Clarksville scored first for a 12-6 edge, but Floyd Central countered with a 6-2 burst, with Drew Hussung drilling a three-ball to close the gap to one. Clarksville's Jermargio Smith scored on a put-back, but Hussung countered again, and the Generals held a 16-15 edge at halftime.

"They have good guards," Gianfagna said. "The (Aidan) McEwen guard is one of the better guards in the area. (Andrew Jones) we let him turn in the first half and let him use his left hand too much. He came off the high ball screen a couple of times in that first half and got to the rim and hurt us that first half."

The Generals did some serious damage midway through the third, punching in nine straight points for a 31-20 lead. Jackson Logsdon put in two for the Highlanders, but Austin Johnson buried a three-ball. Trevor Smith hit from behind the arc at the end of the period, and the Generals held a 34-25 lead with one quarter to go.

"The third quarter killed us," Gianfagna said. "We get 15 at the half and they get 18 in the quarter."

Floyd Central cut Clarksville's lead to 34-27 when Colton Kimm scored inside. The Generals countered with a 6-2 burst as the lead briefly went back to double-digits, 40-29.

Kimm got a pair from the stripe, and Allen Truong drilled a three, to reduce the Highlanders'' deficit to six, 40-34. Calvin McEwen sank a freebie for the Generals with 26.9 seconds remaining, but Hussung got a deuce in the paint and Truong drilled another three.

Floyd Central, however, ran out of clock, and the Generals went away with a 43-41 win.

"They have all the experience coming back and we had not a lot of experience," the Floyd Central coach said. "We were trying to play our size against their guards. Offensively, I thought they would play maybe faster than that. We weren't going to win the game with our offense.

"We wrote three things down … Get to the free-throw line more than they did … Keep them off the offensive glass … and control the game with our offense. The free-throw line, we only missed one from the line tonight," Gianfagna said. "We just didn't get as many attempts as they did. We had them for seven offensive rebounds, and that's too many. Almost all of them led to points."

Truong led the Highlanders with 10 points. Floyd Central connected on 16 of 33 field-goal attempts (48 percent) and seven of eight free throws. The Highlanders had 10 turnovers.

Gianfagna said he was hoping to get the ball more to 6-8 center Cody Hamsley.

"You've got to use what your tools are," he said. "There was a big segment where they'd get a layup and we'd get a layup. That was a big turnaround."

Smith led Clarksville with 11 points, and McEwen finished with 10. The Generals hit 15 of 41 shots (37 percent) and seven of nine free throws. Clarksville had eight turnovers.

"We had bigger guys and we needed to be at our pace, and they got it at their pace and they spread it," Gianfagna said. "Now, they helped us out with some threes I'm sure their coach didn't want them shooting."

"We've got one guy back with experience," he said. "I thought our kids played hard, and we've just got to finish some situations."

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Barbara Shaw
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