Photo by Kate Zuverink
Story by J.D. McKay
Every year FC and New Albany play each other about three weeks into the season, then again to end one of the team’s season. These games make for some exciting basketball. However, the best game to go to is the regular season game. The crowds are packed into smaller gyms and avoiding the hour drive to Seymour gets lots of students at the games.
If you have read my previews in the past, you will notice a common theme in all of them. New Albany head coach Jim Shannon will find a way to stop our best player. But, since Cobie Barnes and Romeo Langford have graduated, it is a completely new game compared to the last few years.
First, as I said above, Shannon will find a way to limit junior Jake Heidbreder. If Heidbreder can outplay whatever they have in store for him, things will go our way. If he can drop 15 points, I almost guarantee a win because of how low scoring these games usually are.
The next key to win comes from sophomore Cole Harritt. Harritt has a silky jumper and can light it up from three. He dropped 23 last week against Castle, and most of those points came from threes. He is 12 for 25 from three (48 percent) so far this year. In our closest game, against Christian Academy, he did not shoot well. I think if he lights it up again, we should be able to win.
The last key we need is for a third scorer to step up. Freshman Caleb Washington has played well so far this year, especially on the offensive glass. If he can get a few offensive boards and putbacks, he could be that guy. It could also be senior Grant Gohmann. Gohmann is pretty good at getting the ball in the hoop, but has a struggled at times this year. If he is able to hit a few shots, he could give the Dogs some trouble.
A few other things to note- New Albany will be without senior Julien Hunter, who is out with a stress reaction in his foot. Senior Trey Hourigan is returning for the Dogs after being suspended for two games. New Albany sophomore guard Tucker Biven can score; he dropped 32 last week in Shannon’s 400th win at New Albany. The Dogs also lost 68-43 two weeks ago to Bloomington South, that was their worst loss in several years. The Highlanders are giving up 46 points per game compared to the Bulldogs 56. New Albany is 1-1 and FC is 5-0. Both teams have played Evansville Harrison. We won 67-47, they won 68-45.
Bottom Line- Both of these teams have lost quite a bit of talent over the past couple years. However, they also both have some young talent that can score. But, without Julien Hunter, I think the Dogs lose a big part of their offense and will rely on Biven. If our defense, which is notoriously strong, can limit Biven and get one or two guys going besides Heidbreder, New Albany will not have an answer. Final Score- FC 53 NA 51
The New Albany-Floyd Central game is finally here, and it will be the rowdiest game in the state, so do not miss it.