By J.D. McKay
Tomorrow night, FC basketball plays Jennings County, and I am going to tell it how it is: The Panthers are not very good. They lost to Madison, New Albany, and BNL. They also have already lost to us this season by 25. However, we cannot just play badly and win; we will still need to do three things to win, and win convincingly.
I will be previewing every sectional and hopefully state tournament game. So make sure to check back immediately after the game. I will also be the color commentator for tomorrow’s game, so tune into 88.1 FM to listen.
First, we need to limit turnovers. This key to success may be repeated every game, but it is just that important. Since we should be able to out rebound JC and get lots of offensive rebounds, turnovers will keep us off the offensive boards and will keep us from getting second-chance points. Plus, if we make turnovers and JC can use them to get fast break points they could very easily keep the game close.
With fastbreak points, JC can gain lots of momentum. We need to keep them from getting momentum. When a heavy underdog starts hitting shots and getting momentum, their confidence can soar. When an underdog gets some confidence they hit every shot they take, even with players in their eyes. If you do not believe me, ask Virginia, UMBC got momentum last year in the NCAA tournament, and the rest is history. To keep them from gaining momentum, we should slow the game down if they go on a run. Then, give the ball to the best player in the Hoosier Hills Conference, Cobie Barnes, and let him do work on the smaller, lss athletic Jennings County players.
The last factor is to stay out of foul trouble. If Barnes or sophomore Jake Heidbreder get in foul trouble, it could seriously slow down our offense. However, if both those guys get in foul trouble, I think senior Harrison Eades, or senior Nick Winchell could be shooting threats to put up some points and senior Logan Libs and senior Cam Sturgeon could grab some offensive boards and second-chance layups.
This postseason has the school buzzing with excitement. Without the thought of having to get through Romeo Langford to advance, expectations are incredibly high. The student section should be packed on Friday and Saturday, and I am expecting to see lots of green and gold throughout the third largest high school gym in the world. It is finally time to reclaim a sectional championship and win our first basketball state championship. Be there.