Host Silver Creek will face off against Clarksville in tonight’s Silver Creek Holiday Tournament championship game after respective wins over Charlestown and cross-town rival Providence last night.
Silver Creek (5-1) opened the third quarter with an 11-0 run that put away the Pirates (1-5) and cruised to a 47-30 victory.
The nightcap between the Class 2A No. 7 Generals and the No. 6 Pioneers was much closer. A 3-point attempt by Brock Hayden that would have tied the contest at the buzzer missed the mark and allowed Clarksville to escape with a 49-46 victory.
Clarksville guard Andrew Jones scored 31 points in the win, including all of his team’s 20 points in the first quarter as the Generals held a 20-12 lead.
Providence will play Charlestown at 6 p.m. tomorrow night, and gametime for the Silver Creek-Clarksville game is estimated to be at about 7:45 p.m.
SILVER CREEK HANDLES CHARLESTOWN
The heavily-favored Dragons (5-1) were a 60-32 winner over the Pirates Nov. 30, but found the going a little bit tougher in the early contest last night.
The Pirates held a 4-2 lead early after a follow-up basket by center Jacob Pollock just 90 seconds into the game. Following that bucket, Silver Creek embarked on an 8-0 run, which was capped by a steal and layup from guard Shae Durham that gave the Dragons an 10-4 lead with 4:38 remaining in the first quarter.
Charlestown coach Sean Smith called a timeout following the Durham basket and the Pirates began to slow the tempo of the contest.
Charlestown held the Dragons scoreless over the remainder of the quarter, and a put-back from reserve forward Darren Taylor at the buzzer tied the contest at 10 heading into the second frame.
“Really, they played us a lot better than the first time we played,” Silver Creek coach Brandon Hoffman said. “But honestly, I was not impressed with our energy. That was far from our best effort. The whole first half was like one big mental lapse.”
Silver Creek finally got some distance from the pesky Pirates with a 6-0 run over the final two minutes of the half, with centers Christian Reed and Jake Steele converting four consecutive foul shots and Durham scoring again in transition off a nice feed from Zach Davidson with 23 seconds left.
Silver Creek led at intermission 23-16.
Charlestown guard Gage Martin sank a runner in the lane to cut the margin to 23-18 as the second half opened, and forward Tanner Wesp next converted 1 of 2 free throws to cut the margin to 23-19.
Following Wesp’s free throw, Silver Creek scored 11 unanswered points over the ensuing 4:30. Zach Davidson’s short jumper gave the Dragons a 34-19 lead with 2:26 remaining in the third quarter, and the lead grew to as many as 20 points in the fourth quarter.
For Charlestown coach Sean Smith, there were some encouraging signs for the Pirates, but during one point in the third quarter his squad turned the ball over on four consecutive possessions, something that dissappointed him.
“When we executed our offense, we got a lot of good looks,” he said. “We still turned the ball over too many times (14) to win against a team like Silver Creek. I felt like some of the critical turnovers ... were unforced. We’re giving away the ball when we don’t have to. A lot of our ills are self-inflicted right now.”