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  • Val T.

Richard scores 31, but Dragons fall to deep Westville

Stults adds 12 points, 7 rebounds for Argos


BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS

Sports Editor, RTC


Sean Richard Luke Stults


BOURBON — The Westville boys basketball team peppered in an average game from their leading scorer with strong bench play to dismiss Argos in a Class 1A, Sectional 50 quarterfinal at Triton Wednesday.

Kaden Pepper scored 19 points, and 6-6 big man Ishmael Kane added 12 points and seven rebounds off the bench to lead Westville to a 66-50 win.

Sean Richard capped off his senior season with a game-high 31 points. He finished the season with 526 and his career with 858.

Luke Stults added 12 points and seven rebounds batting inside with the 6-4 Pepper, the 6-4 Lucas Sonaty and Kane. 

Westville improved to 12-12 and will play Triton, who beat Culver 61-54 in Wednesday’s first quarterfinal, in the semifinals at 8 p.m. Eastern Friday.

Oregon-Davis will face Marquette Catholic in the first semifinal at 6:30 p.m.

Argos finished on a three-game losing streak and with a 10-13 record. They are 0-4 all-time against Westville in sectional games.

“I still think we had a few aw-shucks moments where you get banged around and we think we get fouled, and it’s, oh no, I’ve just got run back. So yeah, we just got to get more tough mentally, and they can learn from Sean.”

Westville had a 29-0 advantage in bench points, which included contributions from Kane; Brian Jackson, who had nine; and sophomore spark plug Dillon Walpole, who hit a pair of 3-pointers and had eight.

Argos trailed 25-8 after Pepper scored the first bucket of the second quarter but then went on a 10-0 run.

Stults scored on a driving layup and was fouled, Richard hit a short pullup hook in the lane and was fouled, and Richard took a pass from Stults on a cut and scored and was fouled.

On all three occasions, Argos missed the free throw to try and complete the 3-point play, but after the third miss, Hayden Hensler hustled down the offensive rebound and found Richard for a layup to complete the four-point possession. The lead was down to nine.

Two Stults free throws with 4:39 left made it 25-18.

Richard kept answering: He hit two free throws. Then he scored again off a Stults assist. Then he scored on a tough lefty finish over Kane at the rim to keep it at 31-24.

Walpole hit a 3, but Richard hit two more free throws.

“The plan was to stop him, and he still can get his,” Westville first-year coach Kyle Sonaty said of Richard. “He’s a phenomenal player. We had different coverages we wanted to run against him. We threw a bunch of different guys at him. And he’s still able to impose his will at times to really score. So we made adjustments throughout, but like I said, he’s a phenomenal player.”

Meanwhile, Argos had switched from a man-to-man to a 2-3 zone.

“We just weren’t rebounding, and I’m just a firm believer,” Breden said. “It doesn’t matter what defense you run. Rebounding is rebounding. You’ve just got to have a nose for the ball. So I thought our defense really improved when we just simply started rebounding out of our zone. On offense, we were just sloppy. … Once we just started working the ball in the right spots on offense, things just started to click. Sean was able to attack in space. So I think part of it was our stage fright, but you’ve got to credit to them. They had big, physical bodies. They definitely earned a lot of those rebounds as well. I don’t want to take away anything from them.”

But point guard Gavin Hannon found Jackson with a well-placed hit-ahead pass and score.

The lead was 36-26 at halftime, and after Westville started the second half on a 7-2 run, Argos never got the lead back down to single digits.

Kane had two dunks in the second half. Westville would lead by as many as 22 in the fourth quarter.

Westville 66, Argos 50

ARGOS (50) (10-13)

Kenyan Beldon 1 0-0 3, Zhayne Hellums 1 0-0 2, Sean Richard 11 9-11 31, Hayden Hensler 1 0-1 2, Luke Stults 4 4-8 12, Mekhi Austin 0 0-0 0, Obediah Salary-Gardner 0 0-0 0, Gabe McMillen 0 0-0 0

TEAM: 18 13-20 50

WESTVILLE (66) (12-12)

Gavin Hannon 4 1-2 9, Cole Swanson 2 0-0 5, Lucas Sonaty 1 2-2 4, Kaleb Pepper 0 0-0 0, Kaden Pepper 7 5-5 19, Evan Massengill 0 0-0 0, Brian Jackson 4 0-0 9, Jackson Stacy 0 0-0 0, Dillon Walpole 3 0-0 8, Rory Bradney 0 0-0 0, Ishmael Kane 6 0-2 12, Maverick Markos 0 0-0 0

TEAM: 27 8-11 66

Three-point field goals:

Argos 1 (Beldon),

Westville 4 (Walpole 2, Swanson, Jackson)

Total fouls: Argos 11, Westville 18

Fouled out: Sonaty (WV), 1:25, fourth

Turnovers: Argos 14, Westville 10

Score by quarters

Argos 8 18 12 12 50

Westville 23 13 20 10 66


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