ARCANUM – The Arcanum boys basketball team lost to a much taller Marion Local squad 55-34 Saturday night in Arcanum.
Marion Local had three players in its starting lineup taller than Arcanum’s tallest player and more of the same coming off the bench. The Flyers’ height, which included starters of 6 feet 5 inches, 6 feet 6 inches and 6 feet 9 inches, helped them get second-chance opportunities against the Trojans, whose tallest player is 6 feet 3 inches.
“When they missed the first shot, we played great defense,” Arcanum coach Brian Gunter said. “When they got stick-backs, it’s because that’s when the height goes into play. And sure, they knocked down some shots, but I’m going tell you what, if we did not secure the original rebound, that’s when the height starts coming more into play because they could go back up and finish.”
Even though Marion Local was able to get some points off offensive rebounds, Gunter said, Arcanum played good man-to-man defense.
“I still say we played very good on their size,” he said.
Arcanum got off to a sluggish start. Donnie Kress scored the game’s first points to put Arcanum up 2-0, but then Marion Local scored 13 of the next 15, with Simon Troutwine accounting for the other two, to give the Flyers a 13-4 first quarter lead.
Marion Local extended its lead to 24-6 in the second quarter, with only a basket from Grady Garno breaking up the Flyer scoring. The Trojans started to get things going last in the first half with a 6-0 run as Mason Garber scored four points and Garno added two. A Marion Local 3-pointer at the end of the half made it 27-12 in favor of the Flyers at halftime.
“Tough first half,” Gunter said. “Struggled a little bit taking care of the basketball. O boards, they got some offensive boards on us, but I thought we did a much better job in the second half by competing and playing hard and not looking at the scoreboard and getting after it.”
In the third quarter Arcanum matched its scoring from the entire first half and only allowed Marion to extend its lead by one point, 40-24. Garno, Troutwine and Garber each scored for the Trojans in the period while Kory Baker came off the bench and also sank a pair of 3-pointers.
Arcanum got off to a slow start in the fourth quarter as Marion Local extended its lead to a game-high 27 points, 52-25. But the Trojans finished strong with points from Garber, Garno and Collin Habel, leaving the final score at 55-34.
“We had a good third quarter, a little bit of a lapse there at the beginning of the fourth, but we finished strong,” Gunter said. “Those are young men who compete; they play hard.”
Garno led Arcanum with 11 points on the night. Also for the Trojans, Garber scored 10, Baker scored six, Troutwine scored three, Habel scored two, and Kress scored two.
“Our guys played extremely hard,” Gunter said. “This whole program plays hard. Everybody left it out there, and I appreciate it.”
Arcanum returns to action with home Cross County Conference games against Newton Tuesday and Twin Valley South Friday. The Trojans then play at Brookville Saturday.
“It’s a good week of basketball coming up that we’re going to get ready to compete and play hard all week,” Gunter said.