NORWALK — Colonel Crawford will play for a district title on Saturday night after defeating Elmwood 46-26. The Eagles gained control early and never gave it up to move to 24-0.
“I thought our guys rose to the occasion. We didn’t talk all night, we just played,” Colonel Crawford head coach Dave Sheldon said after the game.
The Eagles were led by senior Carson Feichtner, who scored a team-high 12 points.
“Look at Carson Feichtner tonight. He leads us in scoring and he’s a warrior. That’s the thing about this team. You have five guys [who can get it done],” Sheldon said.
Senior Mason Studer added 11 points and junior Braxton Baker scored nine points.
Bryce Reynolds was held to 15 points for the Royals — the senior scored 22 points a night coming into this one.
“He’s a really good player. He’s averaging 22 a game and to hold him to 15 is great. Our defense is our staple,” stated Sheldon.
Hayden Wickard added seven points for Elmwood.
Colonel Crawford started the game out on a 10-0 run, while Elmwood didn’t score their first basket until 1:37 left in the first quarter. After a quarter it was the Eagles up 12-2.
Studer, Carter Valentine and Feichtner had two baskets a piece in the opening quarter for Colonel Crawford.
The tide changed in the second quarter as the Royals would outscore Colonel Crawford 12-7 before halftime. Reynolds was able to get going for Elmwood, scoring five points in the second quarter.
Eagles led the Royals 19-14 at halftime. Elmwood was able to cut it to 14-11, before Colonel Crawford outscored Elmwood 5-3 down the stretch, just before halftime.
The Eagles came out and regained control of the game in the third quarter. Baker was able to get going with nine points, which propelled his team to a 31-21 lead with eight minutes left.
“In the half we talked, ‘we need to get baker some shots’. We didn’t get many for him in the first,” Sheldon explained.
Elmwood was held to just five points in the final quarter, as the Eagles pushed it to a 20-point lead. Feichtner had six huge points — thanks to maximum effort — that put the game out of reach.
Closing it out defensively was simple for the Eagles, they just had to stick to what was working.
“Keep doing what we’re doing. They run a lot of sets…. Our guys locked in Monday through Wednesday this week,” Sheldon said.
Eagles will play Western Reseve Saturday at 8 p.m. for the Division III Norwalk District Championship. The Roughriders dropped Willard in the other district semi-final game. Colonel Crawford is back in the district final for the fifth time in six years.
“To come over here and win by 20, it was next step you want to take to play for a district championship Saturday night.”