Eagles fall to Marian; No. 6 Pilgrims romp over Jimtown

PLYMOUTH — Turnovers were the name of the game at Thursday’s rescheduled round one Class 3A Sectional basketball games at Plymouth.
Culver Military surrendered too many during a second-quarter spurt by Marian en route to an eventual 64-39 loss to the Knights, and the No. 6-ranked Pilgrims capitalized on them in a 59-33 romp over Jimtown in the late game.
Plymouth takes on Mishawaka Marian in the late semifinal tonight at Plymouth following an earlier contest between John Glenn and St. Joseph at 6 p.m.

Hoosier Hysteria got into full swing at Plymouth on Thursday night with the Pilgrims taking a step forward in a 59-33 win over Jimtown in round one of this year’s Plymouth Sectional.
It was far from easy going early on with Plymouth holding a 7-3 lead with 1:23 to play in the first quarter but that’s when things came unglued — Plymouth’s forte.
The No. 6 Pilgrims unleashed a defensive onslaught that would result in a 20-3 lead at the end of the quarter.
“There are times in transition where we have guys who can make some plays on the defensive end and the offensive end, but it starts with our defense,” said Plymouth coach Ryan Bales. “That stretch is a perfect example. We got some hustle plays, a lot of deflections, and it led to some good offense for us. It shows the importance of every possession. In that short time we were able to build our lead based on our hustle and defense.
“We got some great rebounds tonight and our defense was everywhere. We got a lot of deflections tonight.”
Hustle and defense is a theme that has been the Plymouth mantra for the regular season.
The Pilgrims never looked back after that point in the first quarter, getting valuable playing time for players off the bench and spreading the wealth in an opening round game preparing for Marian on Friday.
Mack Mercer led the team with 15 points and eight rebounds, but Joe Knapp had 14 with four steals and Ike Kastner had 10 off the bench for Plymouth.
“This community appreciates hard work and playing through the final buzzer,” said Bales. “If our kids step on the court they’re expected to play hard no matter who is in the game. I think our bench tonight was a perfect example of that.”
“They are a physical team, and I like our response tonight, We got knocked around a little bit, got fouled pretty hard early and our response was to attack a little bit harder — really get to the basket — and instead of getting on our heels, instead of getting tentative, they woke us up.”
At Class 3A Plymouth Sectional
Score by Quarters
Plymouth: 20 36 46 59
Jimtown: 3 11 25 33
PLYMOUTH (59): Matt Flynn 4, Gabe Vervynckt 0, Joe Knapp 14, David Lee 3, Nick Bayley 0, Mack Mercer 15, Ike Kastner 10, Kyser McCrammer 2, Trent Briles 3, Josh Anders 8, Tom Felke 0; Totals: 19 19-26 59.
JIMTOWN (33): Luke Crocker 2, Alec Brown 0, Chase Hoeflinger 2, Nick Floyd 6, Adam DeShone 3, Mason Brown 3, Dylan Guldager 0, Trevor Hobbs 2, Cory Waycaster 4, Brody Olson 2, Michael Hobbs 6, Augie Farwig 0; Totals 13 4-8 33.
3-pointers: Plymouth 2 (Knapp, Mercer) Jimtown 3 (Floyd, Brown, DeShone); Rebounds: Plymouth 28 (Mercer 9), Jimtown 18 (T. Hobbs 6); Assists: Plymouth 10 (Lee 3), Jimtown 5 (M. Hobbs 2); Steals: Plymouth 15 (Knapp 3), Jimtown 9 (Hoeflinger 3); Turnovers: Plymouth 14, Jimtown 22; Fouls (Fouled out): Plymouth 14, Jimtown 19.
Records: Plymouth 18-3, Jimtown 7-14 (final)
It was turnovers — the story of the season — that caught up to CMA in falling to Mishawaka Marian in opening round action of the Plymouth Sectional by a final of 64-39.
“It’s the same thing we’ve dealt with for two years,” said CMA boss Mark Galloway. “The kids know this, I know this, it’s no secret we haven’t had a point guard for two years. The point guard does a lot of things. He can dictate tempo, he can work to get open, he can initiate your offense, so that would help. I think the biggest thing is the turnovers; we’ve struggled with that all year long.”
At the end of the night CMA had 19 miscues but 16 of those were in the first half — a crucial period in the game.
Early in the second quarter the Eagles were within 6 but a simple miss of a box out and a pair of turnovers later it was a new game.
“We’re only down 18-13; we missed a block out and (Michael) Whitfield scored and that got them going,” said Galloway. “We missed a layup early, we turned it over early and we were still in the game. The turnovers caught up with us.”
Whitfield ended the night with 22 points with 16 of those coming after the missed block out.
While CMA struggled without a point guard, the Knights enjoyed the services of one of the best in the country, Notre Dame recruit Demetrius Jackson. He ended the night with 17 points and made his presence known in other ways.
“Some of the passes he made,” said Galloway. “His vision is what really sets him apart. He could start next year for Notre Dame in my opinion.”
Marian coach Rob Berger was happy with another aspect of his team’s game.
“I’m really happy with our first half how we played defensively,” he said. “I thought we did a really good job putting pressure on the basketball and then rotating out of traps both in the full and the half court, and I think that really set the tone for the game. I was glad to see us come out with energy.
“We have some guys that are capable scorers, if we can play defense like, that we have a chance to do something.”
At Class 3A Plymouth Sectional
Score by Quarters
CMA: 10 15 27 39
Marian: 16 49 58 64
CMA (39): Eric Burns 0, Devonte Campbell 0, Demetreus Rush-Bailey 0, Hayes Barnes 0, Alech Proeh 0, Sam Concannor 0, Eljay Murray 5, Auston Proeh 0, Nick Zalduendo 19, Rayford Dexter El 0, Lorenzo Ricks 7, Bradley Fisher 2, Matthew Gabir 2, Aaron Marshall 4; Totals 14 6-9 39.
MARIAN (64): Devin Cannady 4, Jacob Whitfield 2, Quron Marks 11, Demetrius Jackson 17, Michael Whitfield 22, Tyran Ottbridge 0, Matthew Royeca 0, Jai Wood 0, William Whitten 2, Nicholas Harris 0, Dylan Hensley 0, Christopher Stager 4; Totals 21 17-24 64.
3-pointers: CMA 5 (Zalduendo 4), Marian 3 (Marks 3); Rebounds: CMA 19 (Ricks 9, Zalduendo 8), Marian 22 (J. Whitfield, Cannady 4); Steals: CMA 1 (Zalduendo), Marian 8 (Cannady, M Whitfield 3); Turnovers: CMA 19, Marian 7; Fouls (Fouled out): CMA 13 (Ricks), Marian 8.
Records: Marian 11-9, CMA 2-19 (final)