February of 2012 was the last time Henryville Hornets entered a game on a two-game winning streak.
That was the case on Thursday. Coming off their first victory of the season last weekend against Southwestern, the Hornets found themselves in the championship game of the McKee Munk Invitational after a 42-30 victory over Madison Shawe.
However, another streak will have to be started as poor shooting and rebounding were the Hornets downfall in a 70-51 loss to Crothersville in the title game.
On the night, Henryville could convert only 17 of 58 shots for 29 percent and were out rebounded 49-23 as the Hornets gave up 19 offensive boards.
Henryville trailed 10-2 early, but pulled to within 17-13 ending the first quarter and 32-21 at halftime.
“I didn’t panic too much at halftime,” Henryville coach Dan Carmony said. “We were down 12, but we hadn’t played very well, although our opponent had something to do with that.”
The Hornets were out of the game quickly in the second half as they missed their first 10 shots to open the third quarter. When Jacob Janek got the Hornets’ first basket of the third quarter at the 1:40 mark, they trailed 43-27.
“Two things I thought were big,” Carmony said. “When they got the offensive rebound, they converted. And we would turn them over, then turn it right back over and they scored on a lot of those.”
Crothersville coach Greg Kilgore knew what he was getting into and what it would take to stop it as the Tigers have now won four in a row after starting the season 0-4.
“They were on a two-game winning streak after going 0-30,” he said. “There’s a lot of positive vibes that come from that and we had to take them out of it early. We didn’t want them to hang around too long in front of a home crowd.”
Emery Dieterlen led Henryville in scoring with 12 points. Freshman Braxton Robertson added 10 points. The duo combined for 44 points in the tournament.
“We did have good balance tonight,” Carmony said. “In addition to Dieterlen and Robertson, [Bailey] Reister had nine and [Elijah] Weeks had eight. They could have all had five to ten points more each if we had shot the ball better and maybe went to the line a few more times.”
Grayson Barnes and Brian Money led Crothersville with 14 points each. Barnes also grabbed a game-high 20 rebounds.
“He had 22 [rebounds] in the morning game,” said Kilgore of Barnes’ performance in a 68-65 first-round win over Oldenburg Academy. “That’s not bad for a 5-[foot]-11 guy. I list him at 6-1, but I don’t think he’d be 6-1 if he were standing on a phone book.”
The two teams will meet again on Feb. 7 in Crothersville in a Southern Athletic conference contest.
“I like my guys,” Carmony said. “We made some progress last weekend and this morning, but took a small step back tonight. What’s important now is that we get better on a regular basis.”