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April 7, 2020

3/9/2020 1:24:00 PM
Panthers' surge ends in sectional final
Jennings coach proud of seniors, has high hopes for future because of stable of talented underclassmen
Trey Wilson (13) and Aaron Martin hug as the disappointment shows on the faces of Jennings County teammates Jacob Vogel, from left, Joe Kelley and Brantley White near the end of Saturday’s Seymour Sectional final.—Photos by Jeffrey Everroad
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Trey Wilson (13) and Aaron Martin hug as the disappointment shows on the faces of Jennings County teammates Jacob Vogel, from left, Joe Kelley and Brantley White near the end of Saturday’s Seymour Sectional final.—Photos by Jeffrey Everroad
Jennings County’s Aaron Martin (right) comes up with the ball after Jacob Vogel (44) gets it to him during a scramble on the floor with Max Tripure, left, and Grant Gohmann of Floyd Central.
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Jennings County’s Aaron Martin (right) comes up with the ball after Jacob Vogel (44) gets it to him during a scramble on the floor with Max Tripure, left, and Grant Gohmann of Floyd Central.
A fast start by Jennings County had Panther fans cheering loudly during Saturday's Seymour Sectional championship game, but in the end it was the Floyd Central backers doing the hooting and hollering.

After jumping out to an 11-4 lead, Jennings County ran into a buzz saw as the Highlanders used their length and athleticism to full advantage in rolling to a 70-33 victory.

"Floyd Central started the game playing man defense and we were able to get some good looks and mismatches early," said Jennings County Coach Josh Land. "Halfway through the first quarter they switched to a zone and we struggled to score against it.

"Their length on the perimeter made it difficult to shoot and pass. We missed several easy shots inside and couldn't go to the offensive glass like we like to. In the second half, it was much of the same. We just did not execute well enough against their zone to stay in the game," he added.

The Panthers (14-12) shot 25 percent (11 of 43) from the field and, unlike their previous two sectional games hit 45 percent (5 of 11) free throws. Carson McNulty scored 12 points and Aaron Martin 9 for Jennings County.

Floyd Central (18-6) extended its winning streak to five and gained its first sectional title since 1989.

"Lots of credit should be given to Floyd Central," Land said. "I think they played their best basketball of the year in the sectional. They are very good defensively and are starting to really click on offense. I look for a very close game between them and Bloomington South in the regional."

In Friday's semifinal, Jennings County edged Bedford North Lawrence in a 44-43 thriller. Martin led the Panthers offensively with 21 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

"The BNL game was a super intense from the tip," Land said. "Our game plan was to force (BNL's Brayton) Bailey to his left hand and keep him off the free throw line. I thought our team defense on him was great all night. We got early help and didn't give him many easy looks but he was able to get to the line late in the game."

Both teams struggled in field goal shooting and both excelled at the foul line.

"The game was extremely physical, especially in the lane. We did a great job playing through contact and getting to the free throw line. Shooting 18 of 22 from the line will win lots of games," Land noted.

"Aaron Martin played the best game of his career and was the best player on the court on Friday night. Trey Wilson had another great night, too. Even though Trey only scored one point, it was the point that gave us the lead with two seconds to play. He also had 8 rebounds. I was proud of our toughness all night long. We were disciplined, detailed and determined to win the entire game," he added.

Jennings County, which last won a sectional title in 2005 and made its first appearance in the final since 2014, has much to be proud of, according to the coach, who especially praised the seniors.

"I am extremely proud of all five of our seniors," Land said. "Aaron Martin played his best basketball of his career in the last couple weeks of the season. He willed us to the sectional championship game with his determination, leadership, and relentless effort. Owen Miller, Joe Kelley, Lance Bailey and Brantley White were great in their roles all year long. I thought they found their niche and were the best they could be at what they had to do. Owen made a huge 3-pointer for us against New Albany (in the sectional's opening round Tuesday). Joe had a vital reverse layup against their trap. Lance had several key rebounds. Brantley's attitude and enthusiasm on the bench were outstanding.

"No role is more important than any other; it may have been Aaron scoring most of the points, but we would not have won 14 games this season without our seniors' contributions. The example they set for our younger players will make us better in the years to come. All five of them represented Jen­nings County in a tremendous way and are very appreciated," he added.

Meanwhile, the future looks very bright for Jennings County.

"Even with five seniors, the majority of our minutes were played by underclassmen. We lost several close games this year. Madison, Seymour, Forest Park, and Floyd Central all come to mind. I thought those losses helped us mature throughout the season and led us to playing our best games in March which is the goal," Land said.

"While it was an accomplishment to make it to the sectional final this year, the loss to Floyd Central should motivate us in the off season. We have to set the bar higher for next year, work harder every single day, accept some criticism, and never be satisfied. The core of our team will return next year and there are several promising young players that will compete for varsity minutes," he added.

"We're moving in the right direction and people should be excited about the future of Panther basketball!" Land concluded.

Saturday's final
Floyd Central 12 16 25 17-70
Jennings Co. 11 9 8 5-33
Floyd Central: Washington 6-11 2-3 16, Heidbreder 7-12 0-3 16, Gohmann 6-11 2-2 16, Purvis 0-2 0-0 0, Burks 1-2 0-0 3, Moore 2-6 3-4 7, Tripure 1-2 0-0 2, Har­ritt 3-6 0-0 8, Poates 1-1 0-0 2, Bouch 0-2 0-0 0, Cora 1-1 0-0 2, Fisher 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 28-55 8-11 70
Jennings County: Aaron Martin 3-6 1-3 9, Trey Wilson 1-4 0-0 3, Jacob Vogel 3-8 0-4 6, Car­son McNulty 3-10 4-4 12, Keegan Manowitz 1-9 0-0 3, Owen Miller 0-1 0-0 0, Joe Kelley 0-2 0-0 0, Lance Bailey 0-1 0-0 0, Brantley White 0-0 0-0 0, Raul Ruiz 0-0 0-0 0, Austin Martin 0-1 0-0 0, Owen Law 0-1 0-0 0. Totals: 11-43 5-11 33.
3-point goals: Floyd Central 8-20 (Gohmann 2-3, Harritt 2-4, Heidbreder 2-5, Washington 1-1, Burks 1-2, Moore 0-1, Bouch 0-2, Purvis 0-2), Jennings County 6-27 (Aa. Martin 2-3, McNulty 2-8, Wilson 1-3, Manowitz 1-8, Miller 0-1, Law 0-1, Au. Martin 0-1, Vogel 0-2). Rebounds: Floyd Central 39 (Washington 9, Heid­breder 7, Gohmann 4, Moore 3, Burks 3, Fisher 1, Poates 1, Pur­vis 1, Bouch 1, team 9), Jennings County 20 (Manowitz 6, Aa. Martin 5, Vogel 3, McNulty 2, Wilson 1, Miller 1, Law 1, team 1). Assists: Floyd Central 15 (Heid­breder 6, Purvis 4, Moore 2, Har­ritt 1, Poates 1, team 1), Jennings County 8 (Aa. Martin 3, Manowitz 2, Vogel 1, Miller 1, team 1). Steals: Floyd Central 8 (Burks 2, Heidbreder 2, Moore 1, Harritt 1, Purvis 1, Tripure 1), Jennings County 1 (McNulty 1). Blocks: Floyd Central 0, Jennings County 2 (Aa. Martin 2). Turnovers: Floyd Central 5, Jennings County 12. Fouls: Floyd Central 7, Jen­nings County 12.

Friday's semifinal
Bedford N.L. 11 11 13 8-43
Jennings Co. 15 13 4 12-44
Bedford North Lawrence: Staley 3-8 0-0 9, Bailey 4-13 10-10 18, Leach 0-1 0-0 0, Miracle 1-2 0-0 2, Cosner 3-10 1-3 10, Staggs 1-3 1-3 4, Stasser 0-1 0-0 0, Messmore 0-0 0-0 0, team 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 12-39 12-15 43.
Jennings County: Trey Wil­son 0-5 1-2 1, Aaron Martin 6-7 9-12 21, Jacob Vogel 3-6 2-2 9, Keegan Manowitz 3-10 2-2 9, Carson McNulty 0-7 4-4 4, Lance Bailey 0-1 0-0 0, Joe Kelley 0-0 0-0 0, Owen Miller 0-0 0-0 0. Team: 12-36 18-22 44.
3-point goals: Bedford North Lawrence 7-19 (Staley 3-7, Cosner 3-8, Staggs 1-3, team 0-1), Jennings County 2-8 (Vogel 1-2, Manowitz 1-2, McNulty 0-1, Bailey 0-1, Wilson 0-2). Re­bounds: Bedford North Law­rence 25 (Bai­ley 11, Staley 3, Staggs 2, Miracle 2, Leach 2, Stasser 2, Cosner 1, team 2), Jennings County 27 (Martin 10, Wilson 8, Vogel 6, McNulty 2, team 1). Assists: Bedford North Lawrence 8 (Staggs 3, Leach 1, Stasser 1, team 3), Jennings County 6 (Manowitz 2, Martin 1, Vogel 1, McNulty 1, Wilson 1). Steals: Bedford North Lawrence 4 (Staley 2, Bailey 1, team 1), Jennings County 4 (Manowitz 2, Martin 1, Miller 1). Blocks: Bed­ford North Lawrence 0, Jennings County 1 (Martin 1). Turnovers: Bedford North Lawrence 7, Jen­nings County 8. Fouls: Bedford North Lawrence 19, Jennings County 15.

Saturday, March 14
First round games
Greenwood (19-6) vs. Evans­ville Reitz (17-7), 10 a.m.
Floyd Central (18-6) vs. Bloomington South (26-0), 12 p.m.

Championship game
Greenwood-Evansville Reitz winner vs. Floyd Central-Bloom­ington South winner, 8 p.m.

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