Cougars can’t beat power of press

By Blake Long/Special to the Journal

INGOMAR – Defending Class 1A state champion Coldwater finally showed Blue Mountain a full court press that it could not crack.
Coldwater’s defensive pressure resulted in 27 turnovers by the Cougars and a 75-51 victory in the 1A North tournament quarterfinals.
“I’ve told them the past day-and-a-half when I knew we were playing Coldwater that we had to handle their pressure,” Blue Mountain coach David Mason said. “Our guards at times handled the pressure and at times they didn’t.”
Ball handler Ismael Reudas had two men on him constantly and was sometimes triple-teamed. Blue Mountain (28-5), the Daily Journal’s eighth-ranked team, also had a cold night shooting.
The Cougars were held without a 3-point basket in the second half until Wyatt Whaley drained one with 1:23 remaining in the game.
Reudas was the only Blue Mountain player in double figures with 13. Fellow sharp-shooting guard Jacob Girley was held to seven points.
Coldwater (26-3) pulled away in the fourth quarter to end the best season in Blue Mountain history by outscoring the Cougars 26-11. Earlando Blair scored 21 points for Coldwater.
No disappointment
“For a school that five years ago won three games, there’s nothing to be disappointed about,” Mason said.
(B) Biggersville 70, Ingomar 62: A little extra studying after church on Wednesday helped No. 3 Biggersville prepare not only for the Falcons, but for the atmosphere in Ingomar as well.
“There’s no harder place to play than right here in this gym. I believe that,” said Lions coach Cliff Little. “But our fans were just as big tonight.”
Jaylon Gaines and Daniel Simmons each scored 25 points for Biggersville, while Henry Foster led Ingomar with 21.
“Our defensive intensity was the difference,” Little said. “We had a couple of missed assignments, but for the most part we played super hard and I was just very proud of them.”
The Lions play Coffeeville tonight at 6 with a second straight berth to Jackson on the line.