Basketball

'Warriors' leave all on the floor

GREENFIELD, Ind. – Going for a dunk in the second quarter, Tyler Smith was knocked on his back and wasn’t the same player the rest of the night.

Later in the game, he cramped up while shooting a free throw, and in the fourth quarter, cramped up going for a rebound.

The Northeastern High School senior had been nursing an injured ankle for quite some time, but nothing was going to keep the Tri-Eastern Conference’s all-time leading scorer from playing every minute of basketball as a Northeastern Knight.

Not his injuries. Not his foul trouble.

But Northeastern’s journey came to an end when the seniors were removed with a 15-point deficit and about 20 seconds to play, as the Knights fell to Heritage Christian 65-50 in the IHSAA Class 2A Regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School on Saturday.

Coach Brent Ross removed the seniors so the fans could show their appreciation.

“What they have accomplished in four years in our program is amazing,” he said. “… I want to thank our fan base for coming out. … The support we’ve had is unbelievable.”

Northeastern finishes the season with a 22-6 record and the senior class of Smith, Kaleb Mikesell, Harrison Rice and Nate Reynolds finish their careers with 89 victories and 18 defeats, four Tri-Eastern Conference championships, four sectional titles and the only two regional game wins in program history.

Heritage Christian advances to the South semistate championship next Saturday at either Richmond or Seymour against Crawford County.

Crawford County defeated South Knox 48-32 to win the Paoli regional.

The Eagles led 12-6 in the first quarter and the Knights never could quite get going.

Reynolds hit a 3 to get them within 14-13, and Smith scored four points as the Knights took a 17-16 lead after the first quarter.

Alex Reynolds and Kaleb Mikesell scored three points to stretch the Knights’ lead to 20-16 with 7:13 to play in the second, but the Eagles slowly worked their way back ahead, 26-24 at halftime.

It was close all night before the Eagles started pulling away in the fourth.

The Knights outlasted Cloverdale in a 67-59 battle earlier in the day, while Heritage Christian defeated Shenandoah 58-45.

“We’re not going to make excuses,” Ross said. “I want to give all of the credit to Heritage Christian. They played a great ball game. … We had our opportunities, we just struggled.”

Smith led the Knights with 16 points and graduates as the TEC’s all-time leading scorer in boys basketball with 1,947 points.

Reynolds scored 14 in the championship game and Freeman Brou had a team-high six rebounds.

“These guys are warriors,” Ross said. “I felt like they left it on the floor. They never quit.”

EAGLES 65, KNIGHTS 50

NORTHEASTERN (22-6) – Tyler Smith 5 4-9 16, Kaleb Mikesell 1 2-2 4, Nate Reynolds 4 3-3 14, Harrison Rice 1 1-2 3, Jordan Stolle 1 0-0 3, Freeman Brou 1 3-5 5, Jalen Hillard 1 0-0 3, Alex Reynolds 1 0-0 2, Blake Hancock 0 0-0 0, Caylor Fisher 0 0-0 0. TOTALS – 15 13-23 50.

HERITAGE CHRISTIAN (17-9) – Ben Gordan 1 0-2 3, Andrew Williams 2 2-2 8, Kyle Somers 3 8-8 16, Zack Meus 4 4-5 12, Hayden Wynja 6 2-2 15, Joe Geiger 2 4-4 9, Bennett Coster 0 2-2 2, Frankie Young 0 0-0 0, Sam McCloskey 0 0-0 0, Jack Arterburn 0 0-0 0, Harrison Eckel 0 0-0 0, Dawson Hancock 0 0-0 0. TOTALS – 18 22-25 65.

Northeastern 17 24 35 50

Heritage Christian 16 26 43 65

3-pointers – Northeastern 7 (N. Reynolds 3, Smith 2, Hillard, Stolle), Heritage Christian 7 (Williams 2, Somers 2, Gordan, Wynta, Geiger). Rebounds – Northeastern 22 (Brou 6), Heritage Christian 36 (Meus 8). Turnovers – Northeastern 7, Heritage Christian 13. Fouls – Northeastern 19, Heritage Christian 18. Fouled out – Mikesell.

Northeastern's seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern’s seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Tyler Smith waves to the crowd as he is removed with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Tyler Smith waves to the crowd as he is removed with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern's Tyler Smith is presented with the regional runner-up ball after Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern’s Tyler Smith is presented with the regional runner-up ball after Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Kaleb Mikesell of the Northeastern boys basketball team reacts after getting pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Kaleb Mikesell of the Northeastern boys basketball team reacts after getting pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern's seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern’s seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern's seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern's 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern’s seniors react after being pulled with about 30 seconds to play during Northeastern’s 65-50 loss to Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central Saturday, MArch 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

After defeating Northeastern in the Greenfield-Central regional championship Saturday, Heritage Christian will play in the South Semistate Saturday at Richmond..

After defeating Northeastern in the Greenfield-Central regional championship Saturday, Heritage Christian will play in the South Semistate Saturday at Richmond..

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Northeastern faed Heritage Christian in the IHSAA Class 2A regional championship game at Greenfield-Central High School Saturday, March 11, 2017.