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February 11, 2014

H.S. BOYS' BASKETBALL: Generals fall to Class 3A No. 7 Brownstown, 56-48

After earning No. 1 ranking on Monday, Clarksville drops out of MSC lead with loss

CLARKSVILLE — Monday was a day full of ups and downs for the Clarksville boys’ basketball team.

In the afternoon, the Generals found out that they were the No. 1-ranked team in The Associated Press Class 2A poll. It was the first time in program history that Clarksville had secured a top ranking.

But in the evening after going through Homecoming festivities, the Generals took a blow to their Mid-Southern Conference championship hopes. They suffered their first conference loss and their second overall setback as Class 3A No. 7 Brownstown Central downed Clarksville, 56-48.

The Braves (13-2, 6-1 MSC) moved into a first-place tie with Class 3A No. 5 Corydon Central (13-2, 6-1) in the MSC. The Generals (13-2, 5-1) along with Silver Creek (9-4, 4-0) are tied for third in the conference, a half-game out of the lead.

“I thought we were as mentally weak as we’ve been all season. I don’t what the reason was for that,” Clarksville coach Jason Connell said. “We were very, very weak in that aspect. We didn’t adjust to things very well like we have. Some things that has not hurt us in the past hurt us tonight.”

Connell said the thrill of being No. 1 might have affected his players to some degree on Monday night.

“It could’ve affected them — I mean, they’re kids. I know it’s exciting for them. But we need to be worried about the conference right now, not being No. 1,” Connell said. “It’s great for our program. But we want to be No. 1 at the end of the year.”

After leading 24-21 at halftime, Clarksville got off to a bad start offensively in the second half. The Generals missed their first five shots, while Brownstown scored six unanswered points to go up 27-24 near the midway point of the third quarter.

“We always say the first three minutes of the second half are the most important. It doesn’t matter if you are up or down,” Connell said. “We didn’t stick to our game plan tonight.”

It was a nip-and-tuck contest until halfway through the fourth quarter. Leading 43-42, the Braves went on a 5-0 run to go up 48-42 with 3:04 remaining in regulation.

Clarksville got to within 50-46 with more than two minutes left when senior Calvin McEwen made a layup. But Brownstown converted 4-of-6 free throws to take its largest lead of the game at 54-46 with 41.7 seconds remaining.

Senior guard Andrew Jones pulled the Generals within six at 54-48 after making a putback basket with 24.3 seconds left. But the Braves put the final points on the board 1.1 seconds later as senior Chaz Schneider knocked down a pair of free throws.

Jones scored a game-high 14 points despite shooting 6-of-17 from the field. McEwen had 13 points as he shot 9-of-12 from the line. However, McEwen was 2-of-11 from the floor.

Teammates Marquise Parrish and D.J. Coleman scored nine and seven points, respectively. The Generals shot 16-of-47 from the field (34 percent) and 12-of-19 from the stripe (63.2 percent).

Cam Shoemaker paced the Braves with 14 points, while teammates Austin Snodgrass and Jacoby Shade each scored 11.

Clarksville will visit Salem on Thursday.

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