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Watson’s wattage powers ECA to win

Eagles jump to big early lead, then hold on against Jimmies.
Posted on Jan. 30, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.

ELKHART — The proficiency with which Tanner Watson put the ball in the hole in the first quarter also put Jimtown in a hole, and the rally-minded Jimmies could never quite fully dig out while falling to host Elkhart Christian 59-51 in boys high school basketball Tuesday night.

Watson swished three 3-pointers in the opening period, and had a fourth initially-signaled trey later changed to a 2-pointer by the officials, as the Eagles soared to an 18-3 advantage by the first stop.

A left-handed junior, Watson finished with a career-high 21 points, including five triples, to go with six rebounds and three assists as ECA improved to 10-5.

“Tanner was the catalyst to us getting some momentum,” Eagle coach Ryan Culp said. “He felt it and we got him the ball, and the other thing I liked tonight is we played some pretty good man defense and stopped penetration. We’ve needed to show we can do that without fouling.”

The Jimmies (5-9) trailed by as much as 19, and were still down 38-20 early in the third quarter, but roared back to deficits of just 47-43 and 49-45, the latter at 4:40 left in the game.

Kenny Bearss, yet another ECA junior left guard, answered that 49-45 count, though, with a 3-pointer and the Jims got as close as five just once the rest of the way.

“Some of our problem is just trying to fit the pieces together,” Jimtown coach Ron Dietz said. “We have the ingredients to be a good team. We showed it in the first half the other night against Triton, and we showed it in the second half tonight against a team that can be a state-caliber 1A team. We can compete with talented teams, but we don’t have our pieces together. In the last third of the season, that’s my job as a coach to get this pieced together.”

Junior Ryan Kupferschmid — named Indiana Basketball Coaches Association District 2 Player of the Week earlier in the day for the 33.5 points he averaged over two outings last week — added 14 points for the winners while Bearss tallied seven of his 10 in the final quarter to go with a game-high six assists.

Senior Michael Hobbs matched his season high for the Jims with 14 points. Mason Brown added 10, while Alec Brown dealt five assists.

Jimtown junior Cory Waycaster, who transferred from Elkhart Christian during the winter break, received a warm ovation from the ECA student section during pregame introductions, and then in his most substantial action yet for the Jims scored five points to go with a team-high six rebounds, two steals and one block.

Elkhart Christian 59, Jimtown 51

Jimtown — Michael Hobbs 7-15 0-0 14, Cory Waycaster 2-8 1-3 5, Augie Farwig 0-2 2-2 2, Nick Floyd 2-3 2-2 8, Alec Brown 2-4 0-0 5, Mason Brown 3-7 2-2 10, Adam DeShone 2-5 0-0 5, Brody Olson 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 19-45 (.422) 7-9 (.778) 51.

ECA —Ryan Kupferschmid 4-9 4-7 14, Jack Walters 0-3 0-0 0, Tyler VanArsdale 2-7 2-2 6, Tanner Watson 8-13 0-0 21, Kenny Bearss 2-5 4-4 10, Michael Craft 0-0 0-0 0, Caleb Stayton 1-3 6-7 8. Totals: 17-40 (.425) 16-20 (.800) 59.

Scoring By Quarters

Jimtown 3 11 22 15 — 51

ECA 18 13 14 14 — 59

3-point goals: Jimtown (6-15) — Floyd 2-3, M.Brown 2-6, A.Brown 1-2, DeShone 1-3; ECA (9-22) — Watson 5-8, Bearss 2-4, Kupeferschmid 2-6.

Rebounds: Jimtown (22) — Waycaster 6, Floyd 5; ECA (26) — VanArsdale 7, Watson 6, Kupferschmid 5.

Assists: Jimtown (12) — A.Brown 5, DeShone 3; ECA (11) — Bearss 6, Watson 3.

Steals: Jimtown (6) — Waycaster 2, M.Brown 2; ECA (3) — Kupferschmid, Walters, Bearss.

Turnovers: Jimtown 8, ECA 10.

Fouls: Jimtown 19, ECA 15. Fouled out — M.Brown (0:26, 4th qurter), Watson (0:14, 4th).

Officials: Scott Geist, Drew Danik, Jay Squibb.

Records: Jimtown 5-9, ECA 10-5.

Next: Jimtown at Bremen, ECA at Bethany Christian, both Friday.

JV: Elkhart Christian 35, Jimtown 28. Top scorers: ECA — Drew Overmyer 17, Jude Allen 7; Jimtown — Dylan Guldager 8, Kane Templeton 8. JV records: ECA 8-5, Jimtown 8-6.




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