Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

March 28, 2014

Eagles final hurdle for Pirate repeat

By Nick Gonnella
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — Win or lose, the season will end Saturday for the Greensburg boys basketball team.

More significantly, the high school careers of nine seniors will come to a conclusion. For the Pirate boys basketball program, a historical era of success and championships will go down as an all-time dynasty for Greensburg.

In games they are playing for a championship, the Pirates are 5-0. Greensburg beat Columbus North for the Hall of Fame Classic championship, East Central for the conference title, Batesville to win the Sectional, Evansville Memorial for the Regional, and Guerin Catholic for the Semi-State. Saturday’s game against Bowman, though, will mark the first time Greensburg has gone up against a two-time state champion.

Both teams are attempting to make IHSAA history in boys high school basketball. A Bowman win would mark the first time a team has won a state championship in three different classes. The Eagles won Class 1A in 2010 and Class 2A last season.

Greensburg, meanwhile, is attempting to join Washington as the only two teams to win back-to-back titles.

Both teams feature uptempo, high-scoring offenses. Greensburg averages 76.2 points per game, while Bowman averages 77. Greensburg, though, will be tested by the Eagles’ full-court trapping defense for the entire game, a staple of Bowman’s success. The Eagles’ pressing style has led to 16 steals per game and a bulk of points off turnovers. Head coach Marvin Rea (119-45 with Bowman in his seventh year overall) likes to utilize his bench often and rotate his players to facilitate the press.

Senior college prospect Justin King averages 14.6 points per game and 9.3 rebounds for Bowman, while junior Davon Dillard, who is attracting college attention, averages 17 points and 7.1 rebounds. Senior Arthur Haggard averages 12 points per game, while senior Anthony Cole averages 10.7.

The Eagles shoot 64 percent from the foul line and 36 percent from 3-point range, while shooting 50 percent overall from the floor.

Greensburg shoots 75 percent from the foul line, 56 percent from the field and 44 percent from 3-point range.

Numbers won’t matter, though, when the Pirates and Eagles take to the court at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. For 32 minutes, the opponents will collide for a shot at glory and the ultimate pinnacle of high school basketball.

Contact Nick Gonnella at (812) 663-3111, x7003.