By MITZI THOMPSON
SELLERSBURG — Just one day recovered from a come-from-behind rally that fell short against Jeffersonville, the Silver Creek boys’ basketball team made sure that disappointment didn’t happen again Saturday night with a decisive 60-28 win over visiting New Washington.
The Dragons led — and led big — the entire game, bounding ahead 13-0 and adding to it even more for a 40-9 halftime advantage.
“Our goal before the game was to kind of take care of business early,” Silver Creek coach Brandon Hoffman said. “We had that hard-fought game [Friday], so we needed this.”
With the win, the Dragons take a 4-1 record into their own Holiday Tournament next weekend with Charlestown, Providence and Clarksville. They open with 1-4 Charlestown, which they beat 60-32 on Nov. 30.
“It’s nice to have a win going into the tournament,” added Hoffman. “I don’t have any complaints, especially about the first half. The guys did a nice job tonight.”
It wasn’t just the bombardment of scoring that got the job done. The Dragons’ defensive pressure had New Washington mixed up from the get-go. The 1-3 Mustangs shot 0 for 8 with two of those shots blocked back in their faces in the first five-plus minutes of the game before a bucket by James Clemons off a long inbound pass ended the visitors’ drought.
“We knew their pressure was going to be aggressive,” New Wash coach Jonathan May said. “But our guys know the spots they’re supposed to be in. They know where they’re supposed to look who they’re supposed to look for. We can’t make mistakes like we did against a team like Silver Creek.”
The nightmare continued for the Mustangs in the second quarter as the hosts kept on drumming with a 20-0 run that lasted the entire period until freshman guard Caleb Ellison’s nice entry pass to teammate Zach Moore led to New Washington’s only bucket with 10 second left in the first half.
Dragons’ senior Shae Durham scored nine of his game-leading 17 points in the second quarter, including back-to-back-to-back buckets midway through. The senior guard also grabbed four steals.
“I think after [Friday’s] loss at Jeff, we just wanted to bounce back and play our game and show everyone that we’re a mature team,” Durham said. “We just wanted to focus on doing the things we can do and working on the things that we need to work on.”
The teams played pretty evenly in the second half with the Dragons outscoring New Washington 20-19, thanks in part to Mustangs’ Logan Miles’ four 3-pointers. The senior guard wound up being the leading scorer for New Wash, with all his 12 points coming in a six-minute span.
Junior Gabe Bauer scored 10 points and collected a game-high six rebounds for the Dragons. Teammate Nick Tinsley scored seven and dished out a leading four assists.
New Washington returns to action Friday and Saturday in the eight-team Northeastern Tournament in Fountain City.
SILVER CREEK 60, NEW WASHINGTON 28
Silver Creek 60, New Washington 28
New Washington 7 2 10 9—28
Silver Creek 16 24 10 10—60
New Washington (1-3): Miles 12, Moore 6, Herron 3, House 3, Clemons 2, Zimmerman 2.
Silver Creek (4-1): Durham 17, Bauer 10, Howell 8, Tinsley 7, Davidson 6, Garr 3, Densford 3, Steele 2.
3-point field goals: New Washington 6 (Miles 4, Herron, House); Silver Creek 4 (Howell 2, Tinsley, Durham)
Rebounds: New Washington 20 (Zimmerman 4, Moore 4); Silver Creek 26 (Bauer 6).