Story By Kody Smith -The atmosphere was electric at Southwood High School on Tuesday, February 20, as the Knights hosted the Eastbrook Panthers to celebrate its seniors and their accomplishments. The four Southwood players on the verge of graduation put on an absolute clinic, combining for 70 points on the way to a dominant 101-64 victory.
Senior Carson Blair put on a masterful performance, capping off a brilliant career as a member of the Southwood Knights basketball program. The senior standout drained nine three-pointers, compiling 39 points in a performance that saw him become Wabash County’s all-time leading scorer with 1,578 points. Congratulations, Carson, on a truly legendary career as a
The Knights controlled the tip, and Blair would sink one of his nine triples on the eveningto set the tone for the non-conference matchup. The Knights did not relinquish a lead the rest of the contest. The Panthers would answer with a shot of their own, but Blair would sink another bucket from beyond-the-arc to give the Knights an early 6-2 advantage. A three-ball from Eastbrook’s Conner Childs kept the Panthers within one. However, the Knights would go on a 7-0 run, including another three from Blair, as well as two consecutive buckets off of turnovers by senior 1,000-point club member Peyton Trexler to get on the board during his senior night. Back-to-back second chance points for the Knights off of offensive rebounds by junior Dallas Holmes and another bucket from Trexler would give Southwood a 21-9 advantage with 3:00 left on the clock. The busy offensive quarter for the Knights would continue, as a steal and assist by Holmesfinds a wide-open Trexler, who slammed one home to bring the raucous crowd to its feet again. Athree-pointer from outside the gymnasium by Carson Blair, as well as additional buckets by
Holmes and Trexler would conclude the first quarter, as the Knights held a commanding 32-12 lead.
Senior Matt Nose, the most recent member of the school’s 1,000-point club, began the first quarter with his first bucket of the contest, giving the Knights a 34-12 advantage. Nose concluded the contest with eight points to round out his senior night. Blair would follow with his fifth and sixth made three-pointers, extending the team’s lead. Eastbrook’s Ryan Mansbarger played a terrific contest, draining one of his four three-pointers to answer the consecutive triples by Blair. However, Blair would hit a layup in response to Mansbarger’s bucket, his first two point field goal of the half. Holmes would sink another three, followed by a sensational dunk by Trexler, with a superb pass from fellow senior Ethen Roberts. The Knights led 52-21 with 3:15 remaining in the half. Following a Matt Nose bucket inside, the Panthers would go on a little scoring run of their own, as buckets by senior Nick Monks and Mansbarger would fall, as well asa free throw from sophomore Capone Johnson would conclude the first half, with Eastbrook on a6-0 run. The Knights still held a commanding 54-28 lead. Blair finished the half with 23 points, while Holmes threw in 15 points, and Trexler added 12 points.
The halftime period was dedicated to honoring the individuals who have joined the 1,000-point club as a member of the Southwood Knights. Men and women from the program’s past and present met in center-court, welcoming in three members from this year’s Southwood Knights team as Blair, Trexler, and Nose stood alongside some of Southwood’s all-time greats.
Dallas Holmes would sink his third three of the contest to begin the third quarter of play, a quarter that saw the Knights tally 31 points. Back-to-back buckets from Nose and Trexler would give the Knights a 61-31 advantage with 6:30 left on the clock. Holmes would answer a pair of free throws by Mansbarger with his fourth and final three of the evening, followed shortlyby another Blair shot from downtown off an assist from Roberts. Two consecutive buckets from Mansbarger would cut the Southwood lead to 69-41 with under four minutes to go in the quarter. Mansbarger was playing like a man possessed, hitting another bucket inside, which gave him 22 points on the evening. He would finish the night with a strong 31 points. Trexler would tally another bucket, followed by eight straight points for Blair, including his eighth make from downtown. However, with under 60 seconds left on the clock, Blair would hit his final shot of the night, a three he will never forget. This triple gave him 39 points, as well as making him the all-time leading scorer in the history of Wabash County high school basketball. Toward the end of the quarter, Roberts would score his first three points on senior night, a triple from the corner. The third quarter would conclude with the Knights firmly on top, 85-54.
Buckets from Trexler, Holmes, and Nose would push the Southwood lead up to 93-57 a few minutes into the fourth quarter. The crowd would come unglued for fan-favorite Ethen Roberts, as he would drive the lane on a breakaway layup, giving his team 95 points. The Southwood bench would empty at the next dead ball, as the crowd rose to its feet as an eruption of applause broke loose. The fans knew exactly what they had just witnessed, and were showing their appreciation for the four years of dedication from the seniors. Junior Quentin Perry made animmediate statement upon entry into the contest, sinking a deep three-pointer. Junior Luke Winerwould send the crowd into a frenzy, hitting two consecutive buckets, sending his squad to the century mark. As time expired, the Southwood Knights would secure their 18 th victory overall in the season, a 101-64 victory over the Eastbrook Panthers.
Blair led all scorers with 39 points. Dallas Holmes drained four threes in route to a 23-point performance. Trexler finished the game with 18 points, hitting nine shots from the field. Matt Nose added eight points, while Roberts finished with five points.
Blair 39pts hit 9three’s 5reb 1st
Trexler 18pts 13ast 3reb 1st
Holmes 23pts 14reb 4st 2bl 1ast
Nose 8pts 5reb 2ast 1bl
Roberts 5pts 4reb 4ast 1st
Winer 5pts 3reb 1ast
Perry 3pts 1st
The Knights are in action this Friday, February 23 at Bluffton, with the JV tipping off at 6:00 P.M. Following that contest, Southwood will travel to Lafayette Central Catholic on Tuesday, February 27 to take on Clinton Central in the first round of sectionals.
The JV Knights ran their record to 15-6 with a 55-24 win over Eastbrook.
A stalwart defensive 1st quarter allowed the Knights to get a commanding 18-1 lead. The game never got closer than 15 after.
Gabe Lloyd scored 17 points on 7-9 shooting to lead the Knights. He also added a team high 5 steals. Quentin Perry had 9 points and 3 steals. Jackson Simons scored 8 points and had 3 steals. Both Alex Farr and Carson Rich had 5 points and 3 steals. Dillion Filip led in rebounds with 7 and added 5 points. Connor Rich had 4 points and 3 steals. Braden Barney had 2 points and 2 blocked shots. Colby Crow had 2 rebounds and 1 steal.