News and Tribune

December 12, 2013

TEN TO WATCH: Clarksville relishes double-MSC weekend

No. 8 Generals looking to get off to good conference start

By GREG MENGELT
greg.mengelt@newsandtribune.com

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — The last round of high school boys’ basketball games happened so long ago, it seems like a different season.

The weekend was snowed out and only a handful of games have been played. Jeffersonville and New Washington haven’t even played a game yet.

Class 2A No. 8 Clarksville is 2-0 after beating Rock Creek 68-59 on Nov. 26 and Floyd Central 67-57 last Tuesday. After last weekend’s delays, those games must seem more like an exhibition season than the start to the 2013-14 regular season.

“It’s a lot like that,” Clarksville coach Jason Connell said. “We wanted to see where our team is after we lost what we lost. Our main focus the first two games was to see what our team has. I’m very impressed with what we’ve season. Pleasantly surprised.”

The Generals’ Mid-Southern Conference opener against Silver Creek was postponed and won’t be played until February. Now, Clarksville’s conference opener is Friday at Charlestown (1-1) with an MSC follow-up on Saturday at Eastern (0-2).

“Our season really starts [on Friday],” Connell said. “We played Rock Creek and Floyd Central, and those are tough games, but our goal, like everybody, is to win a conference. It’s like a new season. That’s hard to believe after only two games, but when the conference starts, [the season] really starts.”



GAME OF THE WEEK

BOYS — NEW ALBANY (1-0, 0-0 HHC) AT FLOYD CENTRAL (0-1, 0-0 HHC)


DAY/TIME: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

RADIO: WNAS-88.1 FM; WFIA-94.7 FM; WXVW-1450 AM.

RANKINGS: New Albany — No. 16 IBCA.

LAST 10 YEARS: New Albany 12-1 (New Albany has won 11 straight).

LAST YEAR: At New Albany 88, Floyd Central 37.

REASON TO WATCH: New Albany should win — even on the road — but the Bulldogs’ days of steamrolling the Highlanders are likely over. The Highlanders looked like a different team in their loss to Clarksville. When they start hitting shots and protecting the basketball, they’ll be a dangerous team.

THE PICK: New Albany 78, Floyd Central 62.



FRIDAY

BOYS — JEFFERSONVILLE (0-0, 0-0 HHC) AT SEYMOUR (0-1, 0-0 HHC)


TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RANKINGS: Jeffersonville — Class 4A No. 12 AP; No. 19 IBCA.

LAST 10 YEARS: Jeffersonville 12-2 (Jeff has won seven straight).

LAST YEAR: At Jeffersonville 83, Seymour 21.

REASON TO WATCH: Seymour still has a way to go to be competitive, but hopefully Jeffersonville fans will make the trek to finally see their team get its season underway in 2013-14.

THE PICK: Jeffersonville 75, Seymour 47.



BOYS — CLARKSVILLE (2-0, 0-0 MSC) AT CHARLESTOWN (1-1, 0-1 MSC)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RANKINGS: Clarksville — Class 2A No. 8 AP.

LAST 10 YEARS: Clarksville 11-6 (Clarksville has won three straight).

LAST YEAR: At Clarksville 61, Charlestown 49.

REASON TO WATCH: This is the Mid-Southern Conference opener for the Generals, who appear to be a conference frontrunner. Charlestown needs to hit open layups — something it didn’t do Tuesday against Henryville — in order to hang with Clarksville.

THE PICK: Clarksville 68, Charlestown 47.



BOYS — CHRISTIAN ACADEMY (1-1) AT ROCK CREEK (2-1)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RANKINGS: Rock Creek — Class A No. 23 AP.

LAST 10 YEARS: Rock Creek 7-6 (Rock Creek has won three of the last four).

LAST YEAR: Rock Creek 72, at Christian Academy 56.

REASON TO WATCH: The Lions were on a roll — having beaten two ranked Class A teams — before their season was interrupted by the weather like everyone else. The Warriors may be one of the few Class A teams with the size to compete with Rock Creek.

THE PICK: Rock Creek 67, Christian Academy 54.



BOYS — NORTH HARRISON (1-0, 0-0 MSC) AT SILVER CREEK (2-0, 1-0 MSC)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RANKINGS: North Harrison — Class 3A No. 20 AP.

LAST 10 YEARS: Silver Creek 8-3 (Silver Creek has won eight of the last nine).

LAST YEAR: At North Harrison 56, Silver Creek 52.

REASON TO WATCH: While Clarksville, Brownstown Central and Corydon Central appear to be the favorites in the MSC, North Harrison and Silver Creek also see themselves as contenders. Despite both entering the contest unbeaten, this is likely an conference elimination game.

THE PICK: Silver Creek 68, North Harrison 61.



SATURDAY

BOYS — MADISON (1-0, 0-0 HHC) AT JEFFERSONVILLE (0-0, 0-0 HHC)


TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RADIO: WFIA-94.7 FM.

RANKINGS: Jeffersonville — Class 4A No. 12 AP; No. 19 IBCA.

LAST 10 YEARS: Jeffersonville 8-2 (Jeff has won six straight).

LAST YEAR: Jeffersonville 80, at Madison 54.

REASON TO WATCH: Madison is supposed to be much better in 2013-14 under and could give Jeff its first test of the season in its home opener.

THE PICK: Jeffersonville 81, Madison 68.



BOYS — NEW ALBANY (1-0) AT CORYDON CENTRAL (1-0)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RADIO: WNAS-88.1 FM.

RANKINGS: New Albany — No. 16 IBCA; Corydon Central — Class 3A No. 14 AP.

LAST 10 YEARS: New Albany 9-1 (New Albany has won 13 of the last 14).

LAST YEAR: At New Albany 63, Corydon Central 48.

REASON TO WATCH: This is the only local game of the weekend featuring a pair of ranked teams. Both were very impressive in their season-opening victories. The Panthers beat a solid Lanesville team by 32 points while the Bulldogs beat Bloomington South on the road. This could be a tough matchup for New Albany in the second of back-to-back road games over the weekend.

THE PICK: New Albany 75, Corydon Central 65.



BOYS — SCOTTSBURG (2-0) AT PROVIDENCE (1-0)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

RADIO:

RANKINGS: Providence — Class 2A No. 6 AP.

LAST 10 YEARS: Providence 6-4 (Providence has won three straight and four of last five).

LAST YEAR: Providence 70, at Scottsburg 41.

REASON TO WATCH: Before the season, there were rumblings that Scottsburg would be better. After wins over Austin and Eastern, there’s little doubt of that. Still, it’s hard to imagine the Warriors beating Providence, even with as little as experience as the Pioneers have.

THE PICK: Providence 60, Scottsburg 44.



GIRLS — CHARLESTOWN (2-2, 1-1 MSC) AT SILVER CREEK (1-3, 1-1 MSC)

TIME: 2:30 p.m.

LAST 10 YEARS: Silver Creek 11-9.

LAST YEAR: Silver Creek 47, at Charletown 46 (regular season); Silver Creek 33, at Charlestown 32 (holiday tournament); Silver Creek 51, Charlestown 38 (sectional).

REASON TO WATCH: These two teams played a pair of barnburners a year ago and this year should be no different. Creek has the home-court advantage, but the Pirates have the game’s top-two go-to players.

THE PICK: Charlestown 50, Silver Creek 47.



GIRLS — JEFFERSONVILLE (5-1, 2-1 HHC) AT COLUMBUS EAST (0-3, 0-0 HHC)

TIME: 7:30 p.m.

LAST 10 YEARS: Jeff 8-4.

LAST YEAR: At Jeffersonville 54, Columbus East 45.

REASON TO WATCH: Pay not attention to the record next to East. The Olympians are 0-3 but they’ve played three teams with a combined record of 18-1 and all three are ranked. No, this isn’t a Danny Brown East team from the past, but its definitely a team capable of beating good teams, especially in its own building. Plus, I think the Devils like it when I pick against them.

THE PICK: East 58, Jeffersonville 53.