• Val T.

Zimpleman’s 15 points, Scales’ floor game help give Triton first Hoosier North loss

Next up: Caston at Pioneer, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday


BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS

Sports Editor, RTC

BOURBON — Caston girls basketball coach Josh Douglass urged his team to focus during a timeout against host Triton at the Trojan Trench Saturday afternoon.

A few moments later, when Laura Dammermann dove all out on the floor to capture a loose ball near the sideline and then passed to Brianna Yarber from a prone position who then passed the ball to Bailey Harness for a layup to give Caston a 40-20 lead, it might have been fair to say that whatever loss in focus that had happened was only temporary.

Caston would build the lead to as big as 24 points in the fourth quarter and cruised home to a 48-34 win that put Caston in position to take sole possession of the Hoosier North lead on Tuesday against Pioneer.

Addison Zimpleman scored 15 points to lead Caston. Maddi Smith had nine, and Abby Williamson and Bailey Harness had eight each.

Isabel Scales’ floor game included most everything but working the concession stand – 6 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 6 steals.

The Class 1A, No. 15 Lady Comets improved to 8-2 overall and 3-0 in the Hoosier North.

Caston coach Josh Douglass said his players were not looking ahead to Tuesday night.

“We’re in that gauntlet stretch of our schedule where it’s conference game, conference game, conference game, conference game,” Douglass said. “And all we’ve talked about, we lost to Pioneer (in the Cass County Invitational championship game on Dec. 4), we forgot about it, we put it behind us, and we started immediately focusing on Judson. I thought we had a little carryover of emotion in that Judson game, but tonight, it was all Triton.”

Girls basketball records prior to 2000 are sketchy, but this is believed to be the first time Caston has beaten Triton on the road in at least 20 years and the first time in at least that long that Caston has beaten Triton two years in a row.

Bailey Harness

Caston edged Triton 41-36 at home last year.

Zimpleman was asked to compare this year’s team to last year’s team which went 15-7.

“We’re a lot faster,” Zimpleman said. “I think it just comes down to that. We’re shooting a lot better. We practiced a lot through the summer, and I think weightlifting is helping us.”

Kinsey Atkins scored all 10 of her points in the fourth quarter for Triton, who fell to 8-5, 2-1. Taren Yates added nine. Addyson Viers, who scored 18 against Elkhart Christian on Thursday and 19 against Tippecanoe Valley on Wednesday, was held to six this time.

Triton made only 5 of 14 free throws.

Triton’s loss leaves Caston and Pioneer (2-0) as the only undefeated teams left in conference play.

Pressing fullcourt and looking to run at all opportunities, Caston jumped out to an 11-2 lead and never trailed. They led 20-8 after one quarter and held Triton without a field goal for 11 ½ minutes covering the first quarter all the way through the 5:22 mark of the third quarter.

By then, the lead was up to 29-9.

“We’ve talked about it for three whole days how key the beginning of the game was going to be,” Triton first-year coach Kennedy Krull said. “Somebody was going to come out swinging. And it was Caston obviously. … It’s hard to battle back from 11-2.”

Instead of Scales guarding Yates in a matchup of point guards, Caston coach Josh Douglass had Zimpleman guard Yates in the halfcourt. Scales played off the ball. Her job was to monitor the weak side in the paint and double down on Viers if she got a touch in the paint.

Viers, a 6-0 post player, was held scoreless in the second and third quarters.

“Our weak side defense has been struggling here lately,” Douglass said. “And it was something against North Judson (a 45-38 win on Thursday), we were not plugging the middle of the lane. And in the short amount of time we had … we worked a lot on, ‘We don’t have to chase those girls all the way out. We’ve got to move as the ball is moving, but we need to plug the lane.’ Obviously, with the Viers girl inside, we felt like she was a big mismatch for us, so we had to have somebody on the front. So we had to designate back side help at all times. So we worked on a lot of that: designate that back side help and be ready to recover out. Whoever that might be, it might be somebody different. But we had to communicate, and I thought in the first half, we did it to perfection.”

Zimpleman had a layup off a Scales assist at the 6:54 mark of the first quarter. She later hit a 3-pointer and had a steal and a layup to make it 13-4.

She had another basket in transition to open scoring in the second quarter. She hit another trey off a Scales assist to make it 34-12 in the third quarter.

“I felt good because I finally had a little more confidence in myself,” Zimpleman said. “Because in the beginning, I just wasn’t hitting much, but with my team behind my back trusting me to shoot the ball and to get layups, it makes me feel more comfortable.”

The lead was 36-20 after three quarters, and Smith had six points during a 10-2 Caston run to open the fourth quarter.

Caston also won the JV game 40-25.

Emma Kay scored 14 points, Annie Harsh had 11, Macee Hinderlider had 10, Alexa Finke had three, and Kaitie Hutsell had two.

Caston 48, Triton 34

CASTON (48) (8-2, 3-0)

Isabel Scales 2 2-2 6, Addison Zimpleman 6 1-5 15, Bailey Harness 4 0-0 8, Maddi Smith 2 5-7 9, Brianna Yarber 0 0-0 0, Laura Dammermann 0 0-0 0, Abby Williamson 2 3-3 8, Kinzie Mollenkopf 1 0-0 2, Emma Kay 0 0-0 0

TEAM: 17 11-17 48

TRITON (34) (8-5, 2-1)

Taren Yates 4 1-7 9, Jolie Groves 0 0-0 0, Jocelynn Faulkner 3 1-1 8, Kinsey Atkins 3 2-2 10, Addyson Viers 3 0-0 6, Jenna Bules 0 0-2 0, Emily Bugg 0 1-2 1, Macie Hensley 0 0-0 0

TEAM: 13 5-14 34

Three-point field goals:

Caston 3 (Zimpleman 2, Williamson),

Triton 3 (Atkins 2, Faulkner)

Total fouls: Caston 14, Triton 12

Turnovers: Caston 20, Triton 20

Score by quarters

Caston 20 8 8 12 – 48

Triton 8 1 11 14 – 34

JV: Caston 40, Triton 25


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