Poor second half costly for North in tourney setback

NOBLESVILLE — It was a tale of two halves for the Columbus North boys basketball team in its seventh place game against Chesterton in the Noblesville tournament.

The Bull Dogs got off to a solid start in the first half. They were hitting on all cylinders to build a double-digit lead near the end of the second quarter.

Unfortunately for North, the second half was another story.

Chesterton started out the second half by scoring 10 straight points to tie the game. The Trojans went on a 14-4 run to start the fourth quarter and the Bull Dogs did not have a comeback in store as they fell 65-54.

North senior Alex King sat out this game with a minor injury, but coach Paul Ferguson said he should be back in a few days.

“I was incredibly pleased in the first half and disappointed in the second half,” Ferguson said. “We had trouble sustaining offense without Alex and Jaylen (Flemmons) in the lineup and we gave away 38 points in the second half, which is very uncharacteristic of us.”

The only trouble the Bull Dogs (5-5) had in the first half was finding a way to stop Trojans (8-3) forward Austin Peterson. He scored 21 of the Trojans’ 27 points in the first half. The rest of his teammates found a way to get involved in the second half. Peterson finished the game with 29 points.

“Peterson kept them in the game in the first half,” Ferguson said. “The rest of them finally got it going and Peterson was very difficult for our bigs to guard.”

Trey Vincent got the Bull Dogs off to the fast start by draining back to back 3-pointers and an Ethan Mitchell basket got them off to an 8-2 start. Vincent later converted a 3-point play, and Stephon Peters-Smith capped off the first quarter with a one-handed dunk to give them an 18-9 lead after the first quarter.

A couple of Peterson baskets cut into the Bull Dogs’ lead at 27-22, but North picked up five straight points to go into halftime leading 34-27.

Chesterton hit two 3-pointers and a free throw to tie the game at 34-34. Both teams traded baskets until the Trojans finished the game outscoring the Bull Dogs 19-8 in the fourth quarter.

Vincent led the Bull Dogs with 16 points, three rebounds, and three assists. Nathan VanDeventer added 12 points, two rebounds and two assists.