Bulldogs survive late rally by Tigers to beat Warsaw 50-46 in OT

A USA-365.com Special Report by Mark Smith

Team /Record 1 2 3 4 OT Final
WARSAW (11-5) 2 8 15 15 6 46
CROWN POINT (12-2) 7 8 14 11 10 50

Saturday, January 21, 2017 - Nonconference game at CROWN POINT, Ind.

CP's Kenny Decker, left, Sasha Stefanovic (33) and Dominic Tomich, right get ready to take the court. They fire the little red plastic basketball into stands for younger kids. (All photos by Mark Smith)
CP's Tommy Frame (40) looks to move the ball really against Warsaw early in last Saturday night's game. The Bulldogs ad Tigers battled into overtime.
CP's Andrew Kenneally (44) holds off Warsaw's Jeremy David (5) in the post. Kenneally scored 14 in CP's overtime win.
Andrew Kenneally (44) and Sammy Krutz (30) look to keep Warsaw's Jeremy David (54) from getting the ball to leading scorer Kyle Mangas in last Saturday's rematch of the 2016 regional championship game.
Warsaw scoring leader Kyle Mangas (2) shoots over CP's Dominic Tomich last Saturday in Crown Pint. The Bulldogs held Mangas to seven field goals but he was 9-of-9 from the foul line and finished with 24 points.
CP's Dominic Tomich (12) gets the ball to Sasha Stefanovic (33) in the post against Warsaw.
CP's Dominic Tomich (12) goes head to head with Warsaw top scorer Kyle Mangas (2) in Saturday night's nonconference game.
CP assistant coach Kyle Hanaway makes a point to head coach Clint Swan during last week's Warsaw-Crown Point game.
Crown Point senior Sasha Stefanovic (33) gets an open shot against Warsaw last Saturday night. Stefanovic scored 14 of his 16 points after halftime in the 50-46 overtime win.
A young CP fan checks out the clock during the Crown Point-Warsaw game. The Tigers rallied late in the night to send the game to overtime.  (All photos by Mark Smith)

Copyright © 2017 USA-365.com and Meyer Multimedia Services, a division of Meyer Broadcasting Corp.  All rights reserved.
Revised: January 27, 2017 .


WARSAW (46) Jeremy David 3-0-6, Kyle Mangas 7-9-24, Asher Blum 3-4-10, Nolan Groninger 1-1-4, Jack Rhodes 1-0-2, Zach Riley 0-0-0, Braxton Minix 0-0-0, Jacob Burish 0-0-0. TOTALS: 15 (14-17) 46.

CROWN POINT (50) Dominic Tomich 1-1-4, Sasha Stefanovic 5-4-16, Andrew Kenneally 5-4-14, Kenny Decker 6-2-16, Sammy Krutz 0-0-0, Vince Smith 0-0-0, Matt Hanlon 0-0-0 . TOTALS: 17-11-50.

WARSAW (14-17, 82.3%) Mangas 9-9, Blum 4-7, Groninger 1-1; CROWN POINT (11-13, 84.6%) Stefanovic 4-4, Decker 2-2, Kenneally 4-5, Tomich 1-2.

REBOUNDS: WARSAW (21) David 7, Mangas 6, Minix 2, Burish 2, Groninger 2, Blum, Riley; CP (15) Stefanovic 3, Tomich , Decker 5, Kenneally 3, Krutz 3..

ASSISTS: WARSAW (3) Minix, David Rhodes. CROWN POINT (12) Tomich 5, Stefanovic 3, Decker 2, Hanlon, Krutz.

CP (2) Stefanovic 2; WARSAW (1) David.

WARSAW (2) Kyle Mangus, Nolan Groninger. CROWN POINT (5) Kenny Decker 2, Sasha Stefanovic 2, Dominic Tomich.



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CROWN POINT (01-21-2017) Here was a game they didn't have to play. Warsaw and Crown Point were postponed in December, and because of the distance (110 miles) between the two schools, they could only make the game up on a Saturday night. One of the few Saturday nights available was Jan. 21.

Glad they could fit it in.

After Warsaw rallied from 11 points behind to send the game to overtime, Crown Point got points from the four starting seniors in overtime to win 50-46 in a rematch of last season's Class 4A Michigan City regional championship game.

Warsaw's 6-foot-3 senior Kyle Mangas scored 10 of his 24 in the fourth quarter and six more in OT, but Crown Point (13-2) took the lead 49-46 on a post basket by 6-foot-7 Andrew Kenneally and two foul shots from 6-foot-5 wing player Sasha Stefanovic with 1:17 left.

The Tigers, who topped CP 46-33 last season, could not get off a good 3-point attempt and the home team held on in front of about 1,000 fans.

"Both teams weren't at their best tonight," said CP coach Clint Swan. "We could have played better. I think Warsaw could have, too. But in that fourth quarter and overtime I think you saw what the two teams were made of."

CP led 36-25 midway in the fourth quarter, but the Tigers (11-5), backed by a couple of hundred fans from far away Koscisuko County closed the gap, largely on foul shots by Mangas, who was 7-of-7 from the foul line in the final three minutes.

The Tigers used a 1-3-1 half-court press to make it hard for Crown Point to be patient with the ball. It was a slow-paced, but very strategic game.

"That was a coaching clinic the last three or four minutes of regulation," said Swan. "They are a very good team and very well coached. They rushed us there with half-court pressure, but we did a much better job in the overtime period."

"That was a crazy game," Stefanovic said. "That last minute (of regulation) we let it slip away. But being resilient and fearless, we were able to come back in overtime and get that win."

CP is probably better suited to play a slower pace than they were last season.

"We talked about that before the game actually," said Stefanovic, who needs to average 20 points a game the rest of the season to become CP's all-time leading scorer. "As long as we play our game we can get scores at any pace. Playing them (Warsaw) in the regular season really helps. We can be ready for any anything we see in the post-season."

Warsaw doesn't stall as much as they play pure, no shot clock, high school basketball. The Tigers (9-4) took 30-40 second on every possession in the first half, waiting for an open shot. Warsaw shot very poorly in the first half (4 of 23, 17%) and it was 15-10 at the half.

The Tigers then went to half-court pressure, which was able to slow CP down without leaving the Tigers vulnerable at the basket.

"We didn't handle it well," admitted Swan. "They weren't trapping us. Just looking for deflections. In the overtime, we ran some man-to-man sets in overtime and we didn't do much better. Mangas had 26 but he had to work for them. Our seniors did a great job."

CP is a tall team with Kenneally and the 6-fot-5 seniors Stefanovic and Kenny Decker. But Warsaw is just as tall with 6-foot-7 Asher Blum, 6-foot-5 Jeremy David and Mangas at 6-foot-3. The Tigers, who have eight seniors on the roster, seem to be breaking in a new point guard, sophomore Nolan Groniger, who is replacing Paul Marandet, the ball-handling star who led the demise of Crown Point last March.

Who is the best team CP has played so far?

"That's hard to say," said Stefanovic after the game. "They (Warsaw) are very good at what they do. It's tough to guard them. Merrillville is so athletic. Merrillville and Pike are very similar. Pike's bigs (forwards) are very big. Big and athletic. Merrillville has more guards. You always have to box them out. They're both really tough to guard. We've played so many good teams."

"And we haven't played Warren Central (this Saturday, Jan. 28) yet."

DOG NOTES: Crown Point's schedule is probably the toughest in school history with nonconference games against 'out of area' teams Penn, 4A No. 9 Pike, Warsaw, (South Bend) Washington and 4A No. 6 Warren Central (12-1) in Indianapolis next Saturday night.

Well, Warsaw is not near anybody in rural Kosciusko County. There's only two other schools in the county. Counting Crown Point, there are 26 schools in Lake County. Warsaw always play 'out of the area' schools because there isn't anybody in 'their' area.

Warsaw plays 4A No. 2 New Albany, Lawrence North, (Fort Wayne) Snider, Carroll, 4A No. 3 Carmel, CP, Lake Central and Merrillville. Neither CP or Warsaw plays South Bend Riley (13-0), a team that both have met in regional play in the last two seasons.

Stefanovic said again that he hopes to choose between Valparaiso University, Evansville University, Loyola of Chicago and Northern Iowa. Northern Iowa?

"Their coach is a really good guy," said Stefanovic. "They're in the (NCAA) tournament almost every year. They have a lot of really good players. I didn't want to walk on (to a larger school) if a school wants to offer a scholarship. I had 21 or 22 offers. If I didn't see myself playing there, I had to tell them. There's other kids they can recruit. I needed to tell them."

At the end of the Warsaw game, an unofficial count had Stefanovic at 1,134 points in four seasons (he played very little as a freshman) on the varsity. According to old dusty papers in some old guy's closet, 1971 graduate Jim Liss (1,315 points) is Crown Point's all-time leading scorer.

That means that Stefanovic needs 181 points in the Bulldogs' final eight regular season games and the Michigan City Sectional to break the 46-year-old Crown Point career scoring mark. Even if you assume only one post-season game (Crown Point played five post season games last season), Sasha needs to score 20 points a game. In the first 15 games, Stefanovic averaged 20.3 points per game.

Crown Point plays at Andrean (10-1) on Tuesday night, Feb. 7 and they host Valparaiso on Friday, Feb. 10.
The Bulldogs led all the way and won at Chesterton 59-40 last Friday. Stefanovic scored 22 and Andrew Kenneally (15) and Kenny Decker (14) combined for 29 more. Chesterton shot just 14 of 49 from the floor (29%) and were 0-of-14 on three-point shots. Decker was credited with 10 rebounds for CP, which is 2-1 in league play behind first place Valparaiso (14-2, 3-0 DAC).


Coach: Clint Swan, 149-96 in 11th year at school, 287-168 in 20th year overall
Nov. 23 at Bowman Academy {2A}  W   73-  69  
Dec. 3 at Penn {4A} ot W   57-  51  
Dec. 6 East Chicago Central {4A}  W   85-  72  
Dec. 10 Pike {4A}  W   72-  59  
Dec. 16 at Munster {4A}  W   59-  32  
Dec. 22 at Boone Grove {2A}  W   75-  23  
Dec. 27 †Columbus East {4A}  W   72-  61  tournament
Dec. 28 at Noblesville {4A}  W   62-  59  tournament
Dec. 28 †Pike {4A} ot  L   62-  67  tournament
Dec. 31 at South Bend Washington {4A}  W   64-  52  
Jan. 6 Michigan City {4A}‡   L    53-  56  
Jan. 13 at Merrillville {4A}‡  W   69-  62  
Jan. 14 Griffith {3A} W   68-  56  
Jan. 20 at Chesterton {4A}‡ W   59-  40  
Jan. 21 Warsaw {4A} ot W   50-  46  
Jan. 27 LaPorte {4A}‡ 7:00 pm  
Jan. 28 at Warren Central {4A} 7:00 pm  
Feb. 2 at Portage {4A}‡ 7:00 pm  
Feb. 7 at Andrean {3A} 7:00 pm  
Feb. 10 Valparaiso {4A}‡ 7:00 pm  
Feb. 17 at Lake Central {4A}‡ 7:00 pm  
Feb. 21 Hammond Morton {4A} 7:00 pm  
Feb. 24 Lowell {4A} 7:00 pm  

Coach: Doug Ogle, 229-106 in 15th year at school
Nov. 23 Tippecanoe Valley {3A}  W   75-  27  
Nov. 26 Columbia City {3A}  W   62-  41  
Dec. 2 at Homestead {4A}   L   37-  50  
Dec. 3 at Huntington North {4A} ot W   44-  40  
Dec. 8 Manchester {2A}  W   63-  36  
Dec. 9 Lake Central {4A}   L   31-  34  
Dec. 16 at Wawasee {3A}‡  W   56-  25  
Dec. 21 at Triton {1A}  W   46-  33  
Dec. 30 †New Albany {4A}   L   33-  43  tournament
Dec. 30 †Lawrence North {4A}   L   47-  64  tournament
Jan. 6 Northridge {4A}‡  W   68-  46  
Jan. 13 at Goshen {4A}‡  W   57-  31  
Jan. 14 at Fort Wayne Snider {4A}  W   46-  39  
Jan. 17 at Mishawaka Marian {3A}  W   47-  45  
Jan. 20 Concord {4A}‡  W   65-  48  
Jan. 21 at Crown Point {4A} ot  L   46-  50  
Jan. 27 NorthWood {3A}‡ 7:45 pm  
Jan. 28 at Elkhart Central {4A} 7:45 pm  
Feb. 2 Elkhart Memorial {4A}‡ 7:45 pm  
Feb. 10 at Plymouth {4A}‡ 7:45 pm  
Feb. 11 Merrillville {4A} 7:45 pm  
Feb. 18 at Carmel {4A} 7:30 pm  
Feb. 24 Carroll (Fort Wayne) {4A} 7:45 pm  
Valparaiso 3-  0 14-  2 63.1 46.6 16.5 Won 4
Crown Point 2-  1 13-  2 65.3 53.7 11.7 Won 4
LaPorte 2-  1 12-  3 58.2 49.8 8.4 Won 4
Merrillville 2-  1 12-  4 68.8 57.3 11.5 Won 3
Lake Central 2-  1 9-  7 53.8 52.2 1.6 Lost 2
Michigan City 1-  2 13-  5 60.6 54.2 6.4 Won 1
Chesterton 0-  3 9-  7 65.6 60.2 5.4 Lost 3
Portage 0-  3 5-11 58.3 59.9 -1.7 Lost 1
Monday, Jan. 16
Michigan City 36, Chicago Corliss (Ill.) 34
Tuesday, Jan. 17
Lowell 56, Lake Central 51
Michigan City 61, Munster 36
Portage 64, Whiting 56
Wednesday, Jan. 18
Andrean 58, Chesterton 55
Friday, Jan. 20
Crown Point 59, Chesterton 40‡
LaPorte 58, Michigan City 53‡
Merrillville 55, Portage 52‡
Valparaiso 50, Lake Central 28‡
Saturday, Jan. 21
Crown Point 50, Warsaw 461OT
Merrillville 59, Carroll (Fort Wayne) 49
Michigan City 58, South Bend Clay 54
Valparaiso 58, South Bend Washington 44
Friday, Jan. 27
Lake Central at Chesterton‡, 7 pm
LaPorte at Crown Point‡, 7 pm
Merrillville at Valparaiso‡, 7 pm
Michigan City at Portage‡, 7 pm
Saturday, Jan. 28
Concord at LaPorte, 7 pm
Crown Point at Warren Central, 7 pm
Kankakee Valley at Portage, 7 pm
Lake Central at South Bend Clay, 7 pm
Merrillville at Lowell, 7 pm
Rich East (Ill.) at Michigan City, 7:15 pm, Michigan City
Valparaiso at Munster, 7 pm
Thursday, Feb. 2
Chesterton at Michigan City‡, 7 pm
Crown Point at Portage‡, 7 pm
Merrillville at Lake Central‡, 7 pm
Valparaiso at LaPorte‡, 7 pm
Saturday, Feb. 4
John Glenn at LaPorte, 2:30 pm
Michigan City at South Bend Adams, 1:30 pm
Valparaiso at Hammond Noll, 2:30 pm
‡Conference game