Marion County Tournament semi-finals are set

Boys basketball has two down, two to go


The 2015 installment of the boys basketball Marion County Tournament is well underway, and as usual, it has lived up to its reputation of being one of the biggest and most exciting tournaments in Indiana. With the semi-final matches now set, that excitement will only grow.


Our own Ben Davis Giants locked their spot in the semi-final Wednesday night. After thrashing Indianapolis Lutheran 69-33 in the first round, Ben Davis faced Brebeuf Jesuit, a familiar face. Brebeuf handed Ben Davis their last loss at a close 56-54. The loss might be considered the Giants’ low-point of the season, giving them a 5-3 record at the time.


Since then, however, the team has gone on a roll, winning three straight, including a nail-biter against the then undefeated North Central Panthers. In the rematch against Brebeuf, a similar result appeared- a two point game. But this time it was the Giants that came out on top with a score of 44-42, extending their winning streak to four.


Outside of Ben Davis, there were many edge-of-your-seat battles in the bracket during the first two rounds. Lawrence North pulled an upset of North Central in the opening round, winning 61-57, giving them their second straight loss since starting 9-0. Then, in the next round, Warren Central pulled an upset of Lawrence North, defeating them 69-62 in overtime.


It wasn’t the only overtime game of the second round. Pike and Lawrence Central also needed an extra period to settle the score. Pike came out on top, 68-66.


And finally, the last quarterfinal game was between Park Tudor and Southport. Both are ranked number one in their respective classes, and both are undefeated. Southport is the likely favorite of the tournament, but Park Tudor has won the last two Marion County Tournaments.


In front of a crowd that included assistant and head coaches from Purdue, Butler, Ohio State and Michigan State, Southport kept their undefeated record alive while ruining Park Tudor’s, 54-47. The semi-finals are set.


Ben Davis and Warren Central will be the first match Friday night, tipping off at 6 p.m. Southport and Pike will tip soon after the conclusion of that game at around 7:45 p.m. The winners of each will face off in the championship game the next day at 7 p.m. All three games will be hosted at Southport.


Ben Davis played all three teams left in the tournament earlier in the season. The Giants previously defeated Warren Central 66-60, and defeated Pike 72-64. They came up short at Southport with a buzzer-beater giving Southport the win, 55-52.


We’ve already seen some tournament magic in this county tournament, but there’s sure to be more in store. Come on out to Southport this weekend and support the Giants in their quest for more of that magic. They’re hungrier than ever for a county championship; they won their last one in 1995.


It’s time to end the drought.




-While the Giants haven’t notched a county tournament win since 1995, head coach Mark James has won one more recently. He led his former Franklin Central Flashes to a title in 2007.


-With their two wins so far, Ben Davis has been able to hold on to their “King of the County” trophy that was earned at North Central. If Ben Davis loses this weekend, the new “King of the County” will be whoever defeats them.


-Their meeting with Indianapolis Lutheran in the first round was the first ever meeting between the two teams in varsity basketball


-The Giants were ranked tenth in the state in the AP poll that came out right before the tournament; they were unranked the week before. A county championship would obviously only raise that ranking even higher.
-6’6 senior Brennan Gillis was suited up and shooting around with the team before the game at Brebeuf, and may see his first action since his injury on Friday against Warren Central pending an examination on the injured finger. Coincidentally, this injury occurred in Ben Davis’ first meeting against Warren Central earlier in the season.