CAREY – In front of a standing-room-only crowd Saturday night in the Devil Dome at Carey High School, Colonel Crawford showed why defense and patience pays off.
The Eagles, who are ranked fourth in the Division III Ohio high school boys basketball poll, limited Carey to 30 percent from the floor and never trailed, knocking off the Blue Devils, 48-38, in Northern 10 Conference play.
“I grew up in this place and saw many good games over the years growing up with my father (Rob Sheldon, former Wynford coach) when he brought teams,” Colonel Crawford coach David Sheldon said. “This is a tough place to play, and I’m proud of our kids — they came out and played 32 minutes, one possession at a time against a very good basketball team.”
As a unit, the Eagles (11-0, 8-0 N10) shot 47 percent from the floor and ripped down 29 boards. Todd Entenmann took just five shots but made every one of them count for a game-high 16 points. He knocked down four shots from beyond the arc, including the first basket of the game with Zach Logsdon’s hand in his face.
“That’s a great job by our guys — we had great screening — and I credit Todd for being patient,” Sheldon said. “Credit Todd Entenmann for not forcing because we have other guys.”
Dylan Gulley scored 14 points and added 10 rebounds for Colonel Crawford, while Owen Adams and Nick Kemper tallied seven apiece. Adams also pulled down 10 boards.
“It was definitely a team effort — everybody from the offensive end, in our motion offense, to our defense,” Sheldon said. “(Carey’s) average is (78) points a game, and to hold a team that talented and can score from all positions on the floor to 38 points, it was a total team effort.”
Carey (10-2, 6-2 N10) collected 27 rebounds and four 3-pointers. Jared Wentling rang in 14 points, nine boards and five blocks for the Devils.
“We came out slow and missed some shots early,” Carey coach C.J. Kin said. “We were sloppy early, which was the big thing.”
The Blue Devils turned the ball over three times and made just two shots, a triple from Zach Boes and a 2-pointer from Wentling, to go down 13-5 in the opening frame. For CC, Entenmann hit two long-distance shots, and Derek Burkhart added another. Gulley and Kemper also scored in the frame.
In the second, Adams converted an and-1 to give the Eagles a 10-point advantage at 17-7. The lead grew to 24-11 after Entenmann dropped in another 3-ball, taking advantage when his defender slipped. Despite being down double digits, Kin’s squad regrouped late in the half and outscored Colonel Crawford 13-11 in the second on six of 16 shooting — three of which were from Wentling. At the break, CC remained on top, 24-18.
“It’s huge when you can go out on the road and get off to a good start,” Sheldon said. “I thought that was key. … We knew they were going to make runs — that’s a team that can make eight to 10 points in a matter of seconds — and I thought we did a good job withstanding those.”
The Eagles opened the second half by holding the Blue Devils to three field goals and taking a 38-24 advantage into the final frame. Carey brought the game within six points early in the fourth, getting a bucket from Evan Rymer and back-to-back 3-pointers from Boes and Logsdon. But Kin’s squad would get no closer.
“We were able to get stops on the defensive end, and we were able to get out and run and make shots in transition, that’s when we were at our best,” Kin said. “… Down the stretch, we weren’t very disciplined, and I thought that was a big key tonight.”
Up next, Carey will host Upper Sandusky on Saturday, while Colonel Crawford will look to improve to 12-0 on Thursday night at New Riegel.
“We just got to keep getting better,” Sheldon said. “We’re going to see different things. As you go into the second round of the league, you have to adjust, and that’s what we do in practice — adjust to what we’re going to see.”