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G-C starts fast, routs Cambridge City Lincoln

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GREENFIELD — In the preseason, the Cougars said they wanted to play fast offensively, mix up their defenses and use a balanced approach to scoring and rebounding.

Check. Check. Check.

Greenfield-Central jumped out to a 14-2 advantage and never looked back, defeating visiting Cambridge City Lincoln 49-23 in both teams’ season-opener Friday night.

The blue-and-gold have won its last 12 meetings against the Eagles, who committed 22 turnovers in part because the Cougars threw multiple defenses at them: full-court pressure, half-court traps and variations of halfcourt man-to-man.

The idea behind Greenfield-Central’s varied defensive scheme is to make use of its team speed and athleticism, rather than have it wasted in a standard defensive formation.

“In the past I’ve been a man-to-man guy. I’ve got to change my ways, I’ve got to change to my personnel,” said fifth-year G-C coach Doug Laker. “We’ve got athletes, so we got to get out in the passing lanes and get deflections.”

When they did acquire scoring opportunities from their defense, the Cougars weren’t shy about sharing the ball. They tallied 13 assists on 22 made baskets, and the helpers were spread among five different team members.

Five players recorded six or more points, and eight Cougars notched at least three points.

“That’s how we’re going to have to play to to be competitive,” Laker offered. “We’re going to have balanced scoring. It’s got to be a committee.”

Greenfield-Central limited Cambridge City to one made field goal in the first quarter. The stanza was capped off by Shelby Oldham’s running jumper at the buzzer, which gave the hosts an 18-5 lead.

The Cougars would go on to keep Cambridge City to a pair of field goals in the first half and had eight thefts. G-C wore down the Eagles early with its depth — 10 Cougars had seen the court by early in the second quarter.

“It’s better that way,” said junior guard Emily Koers. “We have a lot of subs so we don’t get tired.”

Koers contributed across the board Friday night. She had four points, tallied two rebounds, had a game-high six assists and tied Oldham for the G-C lead in steals with four.

“I just do what I can. I don’t go out there thinking about how many points I’m going to score or how many assists I’m going to have,” Koers said. “I just go with the flow.”

The halftime score read 27-11 in favor of the Cougars. A trey by Tayler Pennington would be the only points the Eagles would muster in the third quarter, and the game was in hand after Oldham’s deep two lifted G-C to a 41-14 lead early in the fourth.

Cambridge City (0-1) wound up shooting 23 percent from the field (six of 26). Greenfield-Central outrebounded the visitors by three while also topping the Eagles in assists, steals and blocks.

“We’re balanced and we’re pretty fast. We’re going to be all right,” Laker said. “We’re going to be a good team if we keep believing in being a good team.”

And for one night, the Cougars proved they could function without their two best players from last season in LaRae Cruz and Katie Peters.

“People doubted us, but we’re going to come out this season really strong even though we are missing two of our key players that helped us last year,” Koers explained. “We still have a good team.”

G-C (1-0) will visit Franklin (1-0) today, a team it lost to 43-37 last season. The 37 points were a season-low for Laker’s squad.

“They’re a tough group of kids,” Laker said. “It should be a hard-fought game.”

Notes: Senior Sara Jones led both teams in points (10) and rebounds (six). … Sophomore Regan Lewis added nine points. … The Cougars’ JV team prevailed 33-11. Freshman Savannah Girolami recorded 14 points.

Greenfield-Central 49, Cambridge City Lincoln 23

CC — McClain 1-2 0-0 2, Meal 1-8 5-6 7, Pennington 1-2 0-0 3, Neff 1-3 0-0 2, Hall 1-3 1-1 3, West 0-0 0-0 0, Trumbo 0-0 0-0 0, Buhl 0-1 1-2 1 Bryant 1-7 3-2 5. Totals — 6-26 10-14 23.

GC — Jones 5-10 0-0 10, Oldham 3-9 0-2 6, Koers 2-4 0-0 4, Bell 1-8 0-0 3, Lewis 4-5 0-0 9, Davis 1-1 3-3 5, Hart 3-5 0-0 6, Landuyt 0-1 0-0 0, Girolami 3-7 0-1 6. Totals — 22-50 3-6 49.


CC (0-1) 5 6 3 9 — 23

GC (1-0) 18 9 12 10 — 49

Three-pt. field goals: CC 1-2 (Meal 0-1, Pennington 1-1), GC 2-10 (Oldham 0-2, Bell 1-7, Lewis 1-1).

Rebounds: CC 12 (McClain 2, Pennington 4, Neff 4, Trumbo 1, Bryant 1), GC 15 (Jones 6, Koers 2, Davis 4, Hart 2, Girolami 1). Assists: CC 2 (Meal 2), GC 13 (Oldham 4, Koers 6, Bell 1, Davis 1, Girolami 1). Steals: CC 0, GC 11 (Jones 1, Oldham 4, Koers 4, Davis 1, Girolami 1). Blocks: CC 1 (Bryant), GC 5 (Jones 2, Koers 1, Landuyt 1, Girolami 1). Total fouls: CC 8, GC 17. Fouled out: None. Turnovers: CC 22, GC 9.


Greenfield-Central 33, Cambridge City Lincoln 11

GC — Conley 3, Girolami 14, Ellison 6, Gruell 2, Gibson 5, Flora 2, Jones 1

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