CARMEL | It looked like the wave was coming hard into shore. A double-digit, first-half lead had been cut to four by Times No. 1 Bowman Academy's defense.
But after that, Carmel lived up to its reputation and ran away from the Eagles, 74-52.
“I made a couple of mistakes and missed a couple shots; it was my fault,” Bowman's Davon Dillard said after scoring 27 points in the loss. “We'll learn from this. We'll get better.”
The Greyhounds are the two-time defending Class 4A state champions. The Eagles are the defending Class 2A state champs. Both are ranked No. 2 in this week's poll, Carmel at 4A and Bowman at 3A.
Carmel coach Scott Heady and Bowman coach Marvin Rea became friends when both were Indiana All-Star coaches in 2012.
Heady lived in Griffith from 1969 through 1973 when his father, Bob, coached the Panthers.
But Rea was not happy that his star big man, Justin King, sat most of the game before fouling out. He wasn't happy with a few of the whistles.
“It's hard to win against a great team on their floor with your leader on the bench,” Rea said. “Justin never had a chance to play.”
Carmel's Michael Bruns also scored 27, going 12-of-15 from the line. The Greyhounds (11-1) were 20-of-22 from the line. Bowman (12-3) was 4-of-7.
Vermont-bound Zach McRoberts scored 15 with 12 rebounds. Ryan Cline had 16 and Keegan Culp chipped in 11.
Arthur Haggard added 11 points for Bowman.
“They're a well-coached team, very disciplined and threw the extra pass very well,” Rea said. “They hit a lot of wide-open shots.”
Dillard said that games like this, a true wake-up call, will get the Eagles ready for March.
“We will learn from our mistakes,” Dillard said. “We will get back on track.”