INDIANAPOLIS | The point guard position is near and dear to Bowman Academy coach Marvin Rea.
It's the spot he played in his days at Roosevelt, so he knows the oft-unnoticed value of being the guy who runs the show.
"I'm totally tough on those guys, so it's only right that I give credit where credit's due," Rea said after the Eagles' 86-73 victory over Linton-Stockton in the Class 2A state championship at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. "(Darrion) Riddle handled the ball exceptionally well, getting it to the right guys. (Austin) Daniels did a great job handling the ball and playing defense. Guys come in and take pride in the job they have to do."
The scoring line doesn't begin to tell their story. Riddle and Daniels each scored just two points, but handed out a combined six assists (five by Riddle) with three turnovers in 32 minutes between them. They weren't the only members of Bowman's back court that contributed in a big way. Linden Jackson notched five points, two steals and two assists in 15 minutes, while DeShawn Franklin had a bucket and three boards in a dozen minutes.
"We just play our roles," Franklin said. "If we don't score, we just do what we do best, play hard, play smart. We've got a good coach who puts us in the right position, and it makes the whole team shine."
Linton-Stockton committed 23 turnovers and Miners coach Joey Hart credited that in part to what the Eagles do at the top of their pressure defense.
"They just use the point guard position for 15 fouls," Hart said. "Marvin does a great job with that. They play their style. They play it effectively and they play it relentlessly. That's what their depth does. It helps with their pressure."
Dess Fougerousse said it took some of his teammates a while to figure out how to handle the pressure.
"They're beating you by getting under you, like they're suffocating you," he said. "They just get so close to you, you feel like you can't move, that you can't do anything."
Of the 23 turnovers, 16 of them came on steals.
"We practice pressing a lot," Arthur Haggard said. "We try to get teams out of what they're comfortable doing."