News and Tribune

January 14, 2013

GREG'S PICKS: Young Henryville is suddenly one of area’s hottest teams

Freshman-dominated Hornets have won six straight to get to 9-6

By GREG MENGELT
greg.mengelt@newsandtribune.com

HENRYVILLE — As was probably expected before the 2012-13 campaign, it’s been a roller-coaster season for the Henryville girls’ basketball team.

After all, the Hornets lost Allison Knox — last year’s leading ... well ... everything — along with Sarah Richey and Hannah Gilstrap.

In stepped what appears to be one of the best freshman classes Henryville’s ever had. Emily Hollis and Emma Hendricks lead a Hornets’ class that has made the departure of Knox bearable.

Of course, it’s not always been smooth. After opening the season 3-0 against mediocre competition, the Hornets lost six straight, including losses against Lanesville and Trinity Lutheran teams they probably should have beaten.

On Dec. 7, Henryville appeared headed for a seventh consecutive defeat. The Hornets trailed visiting Providence 24-8 at halftime. Then suddenly everything must have clicked.

The Hornets outscored the Pioneers 38-20 in the second half for a stunning 46-44 victory — and they haven’t lost since.

Despite their youth, the Hornets are currently 9-6. With several winnable games down the stretch, they’re almost certain to finish with a winning record despite all of their youth. And they’re rolling heading toward the Class 2A tournament.

“This has been a very exciting and rewarding season,” Henryville coach Josh Conrad said. “We have a great group of girls who come in and work hard each and every day.”

Despite a roster dominated by freshmen, seniors Jasmine Harrell and Chelsea LaMotte have played key roles. Both guards are capable of running the Hornet offense and Conrad said the duo has helped the younger players adapt to the varsity level.

“Our seniors have been excellent role models for our younger players, who continue to grow and mature each day,” Conrad said.

Henryville will get challenges this week from Christian Academy on Tuesday, Borden on Thursday and Orleans on Saturday.

The way they’re playing, the Hornets have a chance to push the winning streak to double digits before a trip to Pekin on Jan. 24. If they can beat conference-rival Borden, Orleans and Eastern, it’s possible they could enter the tournament on a 13-game winning streak.

While it’s not likely, just mentioning the possibility just over a month ago would have seemed ludicrous.



GAMES TO WATCH — TUESDAY-THURSDAY

GAME OF THE WEEK

BOYS — Providence at Crawford County

• Day/Time: Tuesday, 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Providence 10-1, Crawford County 10-2

• Rankings: Providence — Class 2A No. 4; Crawford County — Class 2A No. 17.

• Last year: At Providence 48, Crawford County 33 (regular season); Providence 54, Crawford County 46 (sectional).

• Last 10 years: Providence 2-0.

• Analysis: Crawford’s gloomy gym is always an advantage. It probably won’t matter against the Pioneers. The Wolfpack have some size to match up with Providence. That’s probably not going to matter either. The Pack are pretty good. They’ll be an outside threat for the sectional title as the host of Class 2A Sectional 46. But they’re probably not good enough to beat a really good Pioneer team (not on Tuesday, not in the sectional) that proved how good they were in nearly knocking off Jeffersonville. No, this Providence team has big things ahead of them and it won’t be derailed — even against an admittedly good team in an admittedly tough environment.

• Greg’s Pick: Providence 54, Crawford County 43.



TUESDAY

GIRLS — Christian Academy at Henryville

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Christian Academy 3-10, Henryville 9-6.

• Last year: Henryville 39, at Christian Academy 26.

• Last 10 years: Henryville 15-3.

• Analysis: This is a Henryville team that has the potential to be really good in the coming years. I have no idea if it’s even a possibility, but if the Hornets can move back down to Class A, a second (and possibly third) sectional championship could be in their future.

• Greg’s Pick: Henryville 58, Christian Academy 30.



GIRLS — Charlestown at New Albany

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Radio: WNAS-88.1 FM

• Records: Charlestown 7-8, New Albany 7-8.

• Last year: New Albany 51, at Charlestown 31.

• Last 10 years: New Albany 4-1.

• Analysis: Charlestown is sizzling, having won four straight and five of its last six after a 2-7 start. New Albany senior Tanner Marcum is white hot, scoring 30 points each night like it’s nothing. If the Pirates can slow down Marcum, they could move to .500 — impressive consider their start. But Marcum goes crazy again and the Bulldogs win a close one.

• Greg’s Pick: New Albany 59, Charlestown 54.



GIRLS — Brownstown Central at New Washington

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Brownstown Central 6-6, New Washington 12-2.

• Rankings: New Washington — Class A No. 12.

• Last year: Did not play.

• Last 10 years: Have not met.

• Analysis: This is a good pickup to the New Washington schedule. And this is a good year for the Mustangs to host the Braves. Brownstown is a little down (but still dangerous) and the Mustangs are really, really good. If the Mustangs’ recent win over Jeffersonville is followed up by a victory over Brownstown, all of Class A better start to take notice.

• Greg’s Pick: New Washington 58, Brownstown Central 54.



GIRLS — Jeffersonville at Seymour

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Jeffersonville 6-10 (2-3 HHC); Seymour 6-11 (1-3 HHC).

• Last year: Seymour 69, at Jeffersonville 62.

• Last 10 years: Jeffersonville 9-4.

• Analysis: Not long ago, the Jeffersonville-Seymour game was big. Conference championship big. Don’t try to tell the Devils and Owls that it’s no longer an important game. This year it means a chance to close in on .500 and momentum heading into the sectional. These two teams have had rough seasons, but both feel like they’ll be tough to beat in February.

• Greg’s Pick: Jeffersonville 45, Seymour 41.



THURSDAY

GIRLS — Borden at Henryville

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Borden 7-6 (1-2 SAC); Henryville 9-6 (2-2 SAC).

• Last year: At Borden 48, Henryville 35.

• Last 10 years: Borden 12-6.

• Analysis: Early in the season, this looked like it would be a Borden blowout. The way the Hornets are playing, it’s not close to a sure win for the Braves.

• Greg’s Pick: Borden 46, Henryville 45.



GIRLS — Lanesville at Clarksville

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Lanesville 10-5, Clarksville 3-13.

• Last year: At Lanesville 59, Clarksville 41.

• Last 10 years: Lanesville 4-1.

• Analysis: It may not be showing in the Generals’ record, but these are two of the area’s most improved teams since the start of the season.

• Greg’s Pick: Lanesville 47, Clarksville 40.



GIRLS — Salem at Charlestown

• Time: 7:30 p.m.

• Records: Salem 6-10 (1-6 MSC); Charlestown 7-8 (2-4 MSC)

• Last year: Charlestown 53, at Salem 44.

• Last 10 years: Charlestown 9-3.

• Analysis: The Pirates continue their ascent up the Mid-Southern Conference standings. Now, if only they could start the season over. They’ll certainly be a team to watch in 2013-14.

• Greg’s Pick: Charlestown 62, Salem 39.



PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Caroline Ricks, New Washington

Ricks scored 40 points and grabbed 45 rebounds in three Mustang wins last week. In Tuesday’s 49-35 victory over Providence, she had her first double-double of the week with 11 points and 14 rebounds. She followed that up with an eight-point, 17-rebound performance in New Wash’s 48-43 upset of Jeffersonville on Thursday. Then on Saturday, Ricks had her second double-double with 21 points and 14 boards to help the Mustangs to a 48-33 triumph over Switzerland County.



Last Week’s Stars

• Haley Vogen, Jeffersonville: 13 points and 15 rebounds in the Devils’ 48-43 loss to New Washington on Tuesday; 22 points and eight rebounds in Saturday’s 45-39 win over Jasper.

• Tanner Marcum, New Albany: Game-high 27 points in Tuesday’s 44-42 loss to South Oldham (Ky.); 34 points on 9-of-15 field goals, 14-of-18 free throws, 2-of-3 3-pointers, six assists in Saturday’s big 64-60 overtime over Columbus East.

• Emily Hollis, Henryville: 23 points, six 3-pointers in Thursday’s 57-53 overtime victory at Southwestern.

• Ashley Johnson, New Washington: 19 points, made only 3-point attempt in 49-35 win over Providence; 21 points in 48-43 victory over Jeffersonville; eight points, six assists in New Wash’s 48-33 win over Switzerland County.

• Alex Tinsley, Silver Creek: 22 points in 74-64 loss at Madison; team-high 16 points in Saturday’s 48-43 loss to Austin.

• Leslie Beatty, Borden: Team-high 19 points in 39-30 win over Orleans on Thursday; Team-high 11 points in Saturday’s 68-43 loss to Seymour.



GIRLS’ POWER POLL

Team    Record    Last

1. New Washington    12-2    1

2. Silver Creek    11-6    2

3. New Albany    7-8    3

4. Charlestown     7-8    5

5. Jeffersonville    6-10    7

6. Floyd Central    9-7    4

7. Borden    7-6    6

8. Henryville    9-6    8

9. Providence    8-7    9

10. Clarksville    3-13    10

    Note on the Power Poll: The poll isn’t based solely on which teams would beat which. Factors like team record and how they are expected to perform in their respective class sectional are also taken into account.