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January 19, 2014

Berries fall at Carmel

Jennings continues her climb on state's all-time leaderboards.

(Continued)

Carrie Larson was also in double figures with 13 points for Carmel. She was 3 of 4 from 3-point range. Logan box-and-oned Emily Kmec and held her to six points. She did hit two free throws in the closing minute.

Carmel outrebounded Logan 37-24 to overcome committing 20 turnovers.

Logan had defeated Carmel — the state’s largest school with an enrollment of over 4,800 students — the previous two seasons in the Berry Bowl.

“It’s a great win,” Carmel coach Scott Bowen said. “We have been talking all year, especially for this group, to kind of get over the hump and beat a team that people are probably not projecting us to beat. To win a game you’re not supposed to win is big. It’s big for momentum heading into the sectional time of year. Just giving our kids the feeling and satisfaction that they can do it is the biggest thing hopefully for our mental aspect.

“Hopefully we can build on this and move on, because that’s a special player in my opinion. That’s Miss Basketball. Our kids carried out a game plan. There’s no way you can stop Whitney or Penny. We at least kind of contained them and gave ourselves a chance to win the game and closed it out when we needed to. So I’m very proud of our group.”

The Berries need to do the little things better to close out wins and not allow opponents to stay in the game. They can be a dangerous team in the tournament if Jennings and Penny are on and their role players do the little things better. They look to be the favorite at the upcoming McCutcheon Sectional but teams like Marion and Harrison have shown them that they are vulnerable.

Carmel competes in the North Central Sectional that feeds into the Kokomo Regional. Bowen, who won a state title with the Greyhounds in 2008, said their sectional field is wide open, as evidenced by No. 4 Westfield losing to Fishers by 17 points on Saturday. Carmel gave No. 6 Homestead a competitive game recently. Homestead will have to get past Fort Wayne South at its sectional, and Homestead just beat another sectional favorite that feeds into the regional, Fort Wayne Snider, by one point earlier this week. So the regional looks to be pretty wide open as well. Homestead looks like the early favorite. The sectional finals are about three weeks away.

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