GARY | Neither Anthony Cole and Raynard Perry had ever seen the movie "The Mighty Ducks." It was filmed and hit theaters before they were born.
So when Bowman Academy boys basketball assistant coach Kenya Stines started calling the two senior guards who come off the bench the "Bash Brothers," they just starred at him.
"I didn't know what he was talking about," Perry said.
"I was like, 'What?'" Cole said.
Still, the nickname stuck at a school that has as many nicknames as raw talent. Both Cole and Perry asked head coach Marvin Rea to not start. They prefer coming off the bench.
Like VCU's men's basketball team, these "Bash Brothers" want to create havoc, defensive mayhem, when they get into the game. They want to change momentum after the tipoff.
Ask Lew Wallace. The "Bash Brothers" started the second half of the Class 3A Hammond Sectional championship game where Bowman was losing. Twenty-plus steals later, the Eagles had scored 75 second-half points and cut down the nets.
The Eagles had 36 steals in the game against the Hornets.
On Saturday Bowman (21-4) will play Fort Wayne Dwenger (17-8) in the Northern Semistate at Huntington North High School. The winner gets a date at state the following week.
"Those two are amazing," Bowman coach Marvin Rea said. "Raynard is a thief. He has the quickest hands I've ever seen. He is so intense going for the ball.
"And Anthony is our garbage man. He scores off rebounds, steals, whatever. Both these guys could be scoring 15 somewhere else, but they understand their roles."
Dwenger's style is to slow down the game and use physicality. Bowman, like always, will try to end that quickly. A full-court press for 32 minutes is the goal.
That's where the Bash Brothers come in.
Cole and Perry give each other a signal when they're on one knee at the scorer's table waiting for a stop in action. That's when the action starts.
"We want to bring momentum off the bench," Perry said. "We want to play smart, play defense. We play hard all the time. That's what we do."
Perry averages five points a game. Cole is at 10.7. Perry has 66 steals. Cole has 55 picks. Bowman has 414 steals on the season.
"I get hyped off the first steal," Cole said. "Because I know there are more to come. I try to get everything off of guarding my man. I try to get points on the board for my team however I can.
"We know (Dwenger) is going to play us physically. We have to match that with our game."