GREENSBURG — South Decatur had surrendered a paltry 39 points a game in building a 4-0 record.
Friday night, the Cougars spelled stingy with a capital “S.”
Rendering Milan’s offense ineffective, the Cougars stayed unbeaten with a decisive 55-22 pounding of the visiting Indians.
Hounded by South Decatur guards Jordan Hatton and Cameron Agnew, Milan’s ability to score was non-existent for long stretches. Two nine-minute droughts insured the losers would go home with near-empty scorebook.
Hampered by a bevy of turnovers, Milan (1-2) was shut out in the first quarter and didn’t score a field goal until the second quarter was a minute old. At that point, South Decatur (5-0) held a 15-0 lead.
With the score 21-2, Kyle Meyer scored the Indians’ second bucket on an unmolested drive at the 4 minute mark. South Decatur coach Tom Black left little doubt as to his expectations when he leaped to his feet to call timeout.
“We play defense,” Black explained, while emphasizing the word “we.” “I, me, you and he don’t play defense. We play defense. Nobody played it on that play.”
His team surely got the message, as the Indians, with the exception of the final two minutes, got their first and last easy bucket of the game.
“We did defend well,” Black said. “Our kids have defended well all year.”
In the face of consistent pressure, Milan turned the ball over 21 times in the first three quarters and shot a frigid 17 percent from the floor over the same span.
“In their defense, Milan was without a couple of key players tonight,” said the six-year Cougar coach. “But to our credit, the kids took full advantage.”
Taylor Koppin was the only Cougar to reach double-figures. The junior perimeter player scored 15 points. Koppin, Agnew and Josh Miller all pulled down five reounds for South Decatur.
The winners, who twice led by 41 points, only committed one error in the first quarter and two in the third.
“(In Agnew and Hatton) we are blessed to have two kids that have point-guard talent,” Black said. “They both understand the game well.”