By Nick Gonnella
Greensburg Daily News
Greensburg — Make that 28 straight wins for the Greensburg boys basketball team, and 62 of 64.
Greensburg extended its unbeaten season to 13-0 Thursday night and distanced itself from the rest of the conference with a 96-66 washout of visiting Batesville.
The top-ranked Pirates take over the Eastern Indiana Athletic Conference lead and move ahead of fifth-ranked Batesville by improving to 3-0 in the conference. The Bulldogs fall to 7-3 overall and 1-1 in the EIAC.
The Pirates, who led from beginning to end in a blowout uncharacteristic of the rivalry, have not lost at home since Feb. 25, 2011.
The home dominance played out in front of a crowd that stacked to the top row of the gymnasium. The Pirates jumped out to a 14-2 lead on the strength of 3-pointers from senior Sean Sellers and Collin Rigney. Greensburg led 23-8 after the first eight minutes. An 11-0 run that spanned more than three minutes of the first quarter opened a double-digit lead. The Pirates assembled another demoralizing run that spanned the start of the second quarter, a 16-0 spurt that covered five minutes and made it 30-8.
Greensburg led 39-21 at the half.
Although an equally competitive Bulldog squad posted a 14-10 run out of halftime, Greensburg accelerated the gas pedal. The home team hit five more triples in the fourth quarter, outscoring Batesville 31-16 in the final eight minutes. Senior Bryant McIntosh initiated the highlight of the second half with a pass to senior Macy Holdsworth, who flipped a behind-the-back pass to Sellers for a slam dunk. Greensburg outscored the Bulldogs 16-6 to end the game.
By the time the smoke lifted, the Pirates had tallied 20 points from three different players. McIntosh led his team with 23 points. Rigney added five 3-pointers to finish with 21 points, while Welage scored 20. Sellers added 19 points, while he and Welage each shot 8-for-8 from the foul line.
Holdsworth scored 10 points, including two treys, and senior Bryce Bennett chipped in his own long-range basket for three.
Greensburg, which shot 19-for-20 (95 percent) from the foul line and made 11 triples, tied a season-high in scoring and minimized its turnovers. Batesville basically had no answer for any weapons the Pirates used, and Greensburg found open shooters early and often.
“I thought we got open looks, but you still have to knock down your shots,” said Meyer. “We got off to a great start and scored the basketball very well in the first quarter. We played alright offensively.”
Meyer credited McIntosh for a bounce-back night after scoring just 16 total points at Shelbyville and Connersville last weekend. The production of the whole team Thursday contrasted the season-low 46 points against a Connersville team that slowed down the tempo.
“He battled through different styles of play,” said Meyer. “Tonight he was freer and looser. It was a little more up-and-down.”
Meyer said he emphasized to the team that much of the season is still ahead, including next Saturday’s county matchup against South Decatur and four more conference games.
“This is just one game,” he said. “We have to move on. We’re going to prepare for Franklin County next Tuesday, and that’s what our focus has to be.”
Junior Bryan Hoeing led Batesville with 25 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter. Blake Walsman added 15. The Bulldogs shot 9-for-10 from the foul line and made seven triples, including four from Hoeing.
The Greensburg junior varsity team also won, beating the Bulldogs 55-27 to stay unbeaten at 10-0. Drew Foster and Chandler Deaton each paced the Pirates with 16 points apiece as the hosts led 13-0 after the first quarter and never looked back. Kevin Beaver added nine and Peyton Buening scored seven. Spencer Burkert, Alex Pokrzywinski and AJ Nobbe each added two, while Keegan McCullough chipped in one.
The JV Pirates shot 8-for-11 from the line.
Contact Nick Gonnella at (812) 663-3111, x7003.