Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

March 17, 2013

PREP BOYS HOOPS: Tipton’s comeback falls short in semistate loss

— HUNTINGTON — Close losses in games which come down to the final minutes tend to hurt worse than blowouts.

Tipton’s boys basketball program has learned that the hard way over the last three seasons. Saturday was one more gut-wrenching reminder.

The Blue Devils fell to Bowman Academy 67-64 in the Class 2A North Semistate, marking the third time in as many years Tipton has dropped a heartbreaker one step short of the state finals.

Tipton’s three semistate losses have come by a total of 11 points, falling 53-50 to Hammond Noll in 2010-11, 69-64 to Bowman Academy last season, and the three-point margin once more to the Eagles Saturday at Huntington North’s North Arena.

“This is really tough,” Tipton coach Brad Dickey said. “Our guys, they deserve more. I’m in here [Saturday] apologizing to them because they didn’t get all the things they deserved. I know that they got a lot. But, they deserved more. They really did. We’ve done the right things. We’ve acted right. We’ve played right. This is just an unfortunate end to something very good.”

Tipton (25-3) had a chance to tie the contest in the closing seconds.

Benefiting from poor Bowman free throw shooting, the Blue Devils closed to within two at 66-64 with 6.3 seconds to play on a Mike Crawford layup.

Tipton fouled Bowman’s Antonio Pipkin with 5.1 seconds left on the ensuing inbound play. Pipkin hit the first freebie and missed the second.

Crawford grabbed the rebound, weaved in and out of traffic, pulled up at the top the key just behind the 3-point arc, leapt into the air, double-clutched around a Bowman defender and let loose a floater that could have sent the game to overtime. The ball clanged off of the front of the rim as Crawford crumpled to the floor stunned.

“I’m very proud of all the kids,” Dickey said. “They care about each other and their sport. There’s one more case evidence of how hard the Blue Devils try. We just wanted to give them something else, one more trip in the tournament, and I feel terrible that we couldn’t pull it off. “

The Blue Devils appeared primed to head into intermission with control of the contest.

With Bowman starters Justin King and Antonio Pipkin on the bench for most of the second period with foul trouble, Tipton built a 26-21 lead on an 8-2 run that ended in a Crawford putback with 2:40 to play in the half.

With one starter on the floor, Bowman (17-9) retaliated with a lightning-quick 10-0 surge to seize control back into their favor at the half, 31-26.

Bowman outrebounded Tipton 22-15 in the first half, and dropped in 10 more second-chance points than the Blue Devils, 12-2.

“We went in at halftime and talked about the things we needed to improve upon, which were position defense and playing with confidence,” Bowman coach Marvin Rea said. “We looked at the positives from the first half. Justin King and Antonio Pipkin went to the bench with foul trouble, but we made a run with guys we don’t normally make runs with and were up. When you can make a run on a team like Tipton with Justin and Antonio on the bench, I think you’re in pretty good shape.”

The Eagles’ hot streak spilled over into the early stages of the second half, bolting out of the locker room and finishing off a 19-2 run that ended in a transition bucket by King to put Bowman in front 40-28 with 5:50 left in the third period.

The Eagles maintained at least a 10-point lead for most of the remainder of quarter, heading into the fourth up 53-45 after Crawford stuck in a putback before the buzzer.

Bowman shot an other-worldly 91 percent from the field in the third period, connecting on 10 of 11 shots.

“We knew it would come down to free throws, handling the ball and getting the ball into the right people’s hands,” Rea said. “My guys went out and got it done for me.”

Trailing 58-48 with 5:40 to play, Tipton began reeling Bowman in with the help of shaky free throw shooting.

The Eagles shot just 6 of 14 from the stripe in the final eight minutes, allowing Tipton’s fouling strategy to pay dividends.

In the end it was all for naught, however, as Tipton got within two on four occasions but no closer before Crawford’s hanger fell just a couple inches short of its target.

“Our kids never say die,” Dickey said. “They keep plugging away. It’s frustrating that we came up short. But, it’s fitting that we’re the ones who took the shot at the end with one more chance. That’s how our group is, but the only difference is we normally make that shot. That’s how it’s been this season. It’s been a great ride that came to a halt.”

Crawford led the Blue Devils with 40 points and 16 rebounds, matching a career high. He also scored 40 points in last season’s semistate loss to the Eagles.

Tipton’s other senior, Blake Hoover, added nine points and four assists. Freshman Mason Degenkolb added six points and three steals, while Austin Hooker added six points.

Arthur Haggard III led Bowman with 19 points. Pipkin added 16 points and seven rebounds, while sophomore Davon Dillard added 16 points and a team-high eight rebounds.

Bowman advances to the Class 2A state finals for the second straight year, where it will face Linton-Stockton. Linton (24-3) defeated Speedway 76-75 in overtime to win the Class 2A South Semistate Saturday at Richmond’s Tiernan Center.

For more on this story and other local news, subscribe to The Kokomo Tribune eEdition, or our print edition

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • WHS Lgn soccer 03 Western routs Logan in girls soccer The difference for Western's girls soccer team was night and day. The Panthers had a night to think about what went wrong in a 2-1 loss at Frankfort on Wednesday, then came out with a different approach Thursday and thrashed Logansport 8-0.

    August 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Prep roundup for Friday, Aug. 22 Western's boys cross country team took the top scoring spots in each of the three races at the Northwestern Combo meet on Thursday, combining to win the event in a time of 54:43. Tipton was second (60:41), Northwestern third (61:49) and Maconaquah fourth (62:17). The rest of the teams were incomplete.

    August 22, 2014

  • High school football kicks off tonight Week 1 of the high school football season is here. Four of the five Howard County schools hit the road for their openers. Taylor is the lone Howard County squad at home tonight. Kokomo visits Mount Vernon, Eastern makes the short trip to Oak Hill for the squads' 18th straight meeting in Week 1, Western visits Frankfort for the squads' 16th straight opener, and Northwestern travels to Clinton Central. Taylor hosts North White in a matchup of future Hoosier Heartland Conference opponents. Like Eastern and Western, several KT-area squads are in rivalry matchups including Tipton (at Hamilton Heights), Cass (vs. Pioneer) and Maconaquah (at North Miami). The start times of several games tonight have been pushed back in anticipation of a hot, humid tonight. Here is tonight's schedule: 7 p.m. kickoffs • Kokomo at Mount Vernon • North White at Taylor • Pioneer at Cass • Maconaquah at North Miami • Peru at Wabash • Tipton at Hamilton Heights • Carroll at Tri-County 7:30 p.m. kickoffs • Western at Frankfort • Northwestern at Cl. Central • Eastern at Oak Hill • Tri-Central at Lapel|High school football kicks off tonightWeek 1 of the high school football season is here. Four of the five Howard County schools hit the road for their openers. Taylor is the lone Howard County squad at home tonight.Kokomo visits Mount Vernon, Eastern

    August 22, 2014

  • SPL - KT082214 - Tom Lindley column - Lindley column sig LINDLEY: Another stumble begs questions about ND Not again. Not Notre Dame. Sorry, Irish fans. It’s sad but true. The stench of academic fraud — followed by a sweeping investigation — is back in the air in South Bend.

    August 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT082114 Brett Bowman column-pic Smackdown gets rolling tonight The three biggest nights of the USAC Amsoil National Sprint Car Series’ season kick off tonight and conclude Saturday night with the third-running of the Stoops’ Freightliner Sprint Car Smackdown at the Kokomo Speedway.The event is rapidly gaining mo

    August 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • Kokomo tennis 04 Prep roundup for Thursday, Aug. 21: Kokomo tennis tops Alex Kokomo’s boys tennis team topped Alexandria 4-1 on the Wildkat courts on Wednesday to even the Kats’ record at 1-1.The No. 1 doubles team of Blake Brookshire and Joey Hurlocker won 6-2, 6-4 and were the first point off the court for the Kats. The No.

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Taylor fball practice 01 Titans adjusting on the fly to new coach When Taylor found itself without a football coach after the sudden departure of Eric Davis in the first week of preseason practice, the school turned to one person who couldn’t say no, no matter how difficult the situation.Long-time girls basketball

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • EHSvsPeruFB 19 Peru looks to take another step in the right direction The Peru football team posted a 4-6 record last year, which marked the Bengal Tigers’ best showing since the 2000 team went 7-5.Peru coach Bob Prescott would like to build on its 2013 success.“We are trying to improve every day, and taking it one day

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jenkins card Greatest Save brings Major Leaguers to Kokomo Community First Bank Executive Vice President Bob Hickman saw first hand the great benefits and excitement the Greatest Save program brought to the community of Evansville the last two years. He watched as Major League Baseball legends like Rollie Fi

    August 21, 2014 3 Photos

  • Age no opponent for some of NFL's veteran stars NEW YORK (AP) — There's something stunning happening on Michael Vick's head. You can't see them from far away, but up close, tiny gray hairs are starting to emerge — color-sapped reminders that the New York Jets quarterback is no longer the speedy y

    August 20, 2014