BB 3A SECT. 25: Danville dominant in 66-54 upset of 3A #5 host Lebanon
March 2, 2011Danville Community High School
By Mike McGraw
LEBANON – It wasn't pretty, and that suited coach Brian Barber and his Danville Warriors just fine. They knew a Class 3A Sectional 25 upset of fifth-ranked host Lebanon would require three things.
First and foremost, shut down the Tigers' high-scoring Trey Hendrix, who came in averaging 26.3 points a game. Secondly, make the game a blue-collar, physical affair. Finally, dominate some aspect of the contest.
Danville did all three March 1 and came away with a 66-54 opening-round victory in the Lebanon Sectional.
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Hendrix scored 23 points. He has seldom, however, worked harder for points or scored fewer meaningful ones.
The Lebanon junior was just 7 of 18 from the field, and only 5 of 10 from the free throw line. At the end of the third quarter, Hendrix had only found eight shot attempts in the game. He had 14 points at that juncture, and Danville (17-5) was comfortably in the lead if not in complete control.
You can credit the Warriors’ Steve Konechnik for helping to accomplish this goal. Konechnik stuck to Hendrix like gum on a shoe in an assortment of Danville defenses.
“Blue collar” is probably a nice term for this game from a spectator's standpoint. Danville was intense on defense, physical on the boards, and grinding – if not methodical – on offense. It certainly helped the Warriors' cause that the officials established a close whistle from the outset.
The Warriors were not pretty on offense, either, but the results were. Danville's attack consisted of a relentless push toward the basket, and it put them on the foul line repeatedly. The post-Travis Carroll (now at Purdue) Warriors also completely controlled the defensive boards, giving Lebanon (16-5) only one chance at a time throughout the evening.
That brings us to the part of the game that Danville dominated, and it certainly isn't the one people would have expected. The Warriors got to the free throw line 24 times in the game, and they netted 20 of those tosses.
Senior Tyler Hall, for example, camped at the stripe throughout the final eight minutes and canned 14 attempts to keep the Tigers well at bay.
Danville established the pace of play early in the contest. The first quarter ended with just 15 points on the board and the Warriors clinging to an 8-7 advantage. They battled to a 20-17 lead at intermission.
At that point, Konechnik had limited Hendrix to just four shot attempts.
A 14-4 run by Danville early in the third period was the turning point. It gave the Warriors a 35-24 lead midway through the quarter, and Lebanon would come no closer than four points, 45-41, the remainder of the way.
When the Tigers closed to that point early in the fourth stanza, Danville responded with a 9-4 run to retake control at 54-45. From there, Hall kept the Tigers at arm's length with his sniping from the line.
It was an extremely sour finish to the season for Lebanon, which dropped three of its last five games after reaching No. 1 status in the 3A rankings following a 9-0 start.
Danville advances to face Crawfordsville (11-9) in Friday’s second semifinal. The two Sagamore Conference rivals played an overtime affair won by Danville less than three weeks ago.
The winner of this showdown will face either North Montgomery (11-10) – a buzzer-beating 50-49 winner over Western Boone in the sectional’s opening game Tuesday – or Southmont (5-15) in Saturday night’s championship game.