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By LARRY GOFFINET
TELL CITY—Tell City’s game plan worked well early in Saturday’s PAC boys basketball game with Gibson Southern. Then the Marksmen hit a prolonged shooting slump in a 57-38 loss.
Brian Arnold hit a three-pointer to put the Marksmen up 10-8 in the last two minutes of the first quarter.
They would finish the period tied 10-10 and hitting 4 of 10 from the field. And Gibson Southern center/forward Spencer Schmitt, voted the PAC’s top player by conference coaches last year, was already sidelined with two fouls—he would sit out the last 14:13 of the first half.
But the Marksmen did not score another field goal until Arnold hit a driving 5-footer with 4:26 left in the third quarter.
In between, they missed 11 consecutive shots and the Titans built a 31-14 lead.
The Marksmen hit 31.8 percent from the field for the game compared with 46.5 percent for the Titans.
“I thought we had some good looks and they just didn’t fall,” said Tell City Coach Brent Owen.
He added, “As a coach, I’ve got to get better at running a zone offense.”
Gibson Southern used a zone defense much of the game, possibly because its big man was in foul trouble.
“Probably the toughest thing I’ve ask them to execute all year they did tonight,” said Owen. “I told our guys we’ve got to get No. 23 (Schmitt) in foul trouble—he’ll jump to try to block shots so you’ve got to go at him and pump fake.
“I thought if he was a non-factor, we’d win this game. It didn’t turn out that way though.”
Tell City tied the taller Titans in rebounds with 29 as Brennan Malone grabbed 16.
“I like the way he’s playing right now,” Owen said of Malone. “We were really worried about our rebounding when (center) Grant Sanders went out with a pulled hamstring, but Brennan’s gotten all of Grant’s rebounds.”
The Marksmen committed only 14 turnovers, with not many sloppy ones. But they couldn’t overcome their cold shooting.
Arnold led the Marksmen with 17 points. Reese Miller added eight, including 6 for 8 free-throw shooting.
Senior forward Andrew Ziliak led Gibson Southern with 17 points.
Tell City fell to 3-13 overall, 0-5 in the PAC. Gibson Southern improved to 5-12 overall, 2-3 in the conference.
The Marksmen will host Evansville North tonight at 7:30.
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Gibson Southern won the JV game 52-38. C.J. Rowe and Hunter Rowe each scored eight points for Tell City. C.J. Rowe also grabbed five rebounds.