WINCHESTER, Ind. – Tri-Village traveled to the Hoosier State on Saturday to take on the 2A Winchester High School Golden Falcons.
The Patriots are familiar with Winchester having played them in summer league and in season over the last couple of years, always coming out on the positive end.
The Winchester Field House wasn’t too friendly to the Patriots this year. T-V struggled to fill the peach basket and didn’t adjust to the officiating very well either, eventually dropping a 64-49 decision to the Falcons.
In the opening quarter Gavin Richards connected on a triple and Knox Morris off the lob for two put the PATS up 5-0. Richards would score 19 and Morris 10 points for the game.
Winchester came back and took the lead 6-5 with 3:15 to go. The two teams then played to a stalemate in the opening quarter, 11-11.
In the second period Winchester got hot and erupted for 26 points, the most a Patriots team has given up in one quarter all year long.
Tri-Village tried to keep it close as Richards scored 10 of the Patriots’ 17 points, but they would trail at the half 37-28.
“We didn’t defend anybody tonight. We gave up 37 points in the first half, and if you double it, that’s almost 75 points. You aren’t going to win many games like that,” Tri-Village boys basketball coach Josh Sagester said.
Winchester outsized the Patriots at every position, a very athletic team that seemed to be inspired as they challenged every shot with vigor.
“We were able to get shots, but we struggled putting the ball in the hole,” Sagester said.
Maybe the inspiration for Winchester was the halftime presentation made to former coach Pat Rady, who has the second most wins in Indiana high school basketball history with 761 wins.
Tri-Village was unable to establish its normal post game in the third quarter, scoring just 10 points, two off triples from Tyler VanWinkle, who would end with nine points.
Kiante Enis, who recently de-committed from the University of Michigan football team, was quite in the first half … but began to assert his presence in the third quarter. Enis accounted for nine of 13 points for the Falcons including a dunk down the middle as Winchester increased its lead to 50-38.
In the final stanza the Patriots tried to pick-up their intensity on defense but appeared stymied throughout the contest as the game was being called close and any hand touching was an immediate foul.
“Winchester was fairly athletic, and at times we struggled to keep guys in front of us tonight, and that led to some of the fouls,” Sagester said.
Three players – VanWinkle, Richards and Brett Boyter – all fouled out of the contest. Winchester would go to the free throw line 34 times compared to just 12 for the Patriots.
It was a game Winchester basically controlled from the second quarter on, finishing it 64-49 to hand the Patriots their second loss on the year and dropping them to 14-2 overall.
“Give credit to Winchester … the last game the Lawrence kid had two points; tonight he has 22. The Miller kid had four points, and he goes for 14 tonight. If those two individuals can make shots in a game of this magnitude then that’s a pretty good basketball team,” Sagester said.
Tri-Village will have little time to dwell on the loss as the Patriots prepare for a huge Cross County Conference battle with undefeated Miami East on Tuesday.
“I told our guys in the locker room on Tuesday we are going to find out if we are contenders or pretenders. When we walk out of Casstown on Tuesday we’re going to learn a lot about ourselves,” Sagester said.
“I challenged our guys at the half, and they didn’t rise to the occasion. We weren’t sharp, we didn’t make shots, we struggled on the boards, and Enis pretty much did what he wanted to do and when he wanted to do it. This team needs to get that hunger back,” Sagester concluded.
Score by quarters:
Tri-Village….11…17…10…11 – 49
Winchester…11…26…13…14 – 64
Knox Morris 10, Tyler VanWinkle 9, Gavin Richards 19, Trace Couch 7
Totals 5-13-8/12 – 49
Enis 17, Georgi 5, Hall 4, Lawrence 22, Gates 2, Miller 14
Totals 8-10-20/34 – 64
TV – 5 (VanWinkle 3, Richards 2)
WI – 8 (Lawrence 4, Miller 2, Enis 2)