March 27, 2010
WHEELER FREE THROWS OVERCOME PARK TUDOR IN CLASS 2A FINAL GAME
Wheeler used timely success at the free throw line to compensate for zero field goals in the fourth quarter and held off Park Tudor 41-38 in the Class 2A state championship game.
Coach Mike Jones' second-ranked Bearcats hit 12-of-14 free throws in the fourth quarter. Petar Todorovic made all four of his attempts in the period, and Donnie Ketchum was 5-of-6. Four-year starter Andrew Rudakas hit a pair of free throws with 24.7 seconds remaining for the final margin.
For the game, coach Ed Schilling's Park Tudor team held Wheeler to 25.7 percent shooting from the field (9-of-35), but the Bearcats totaled 76.9 percent from the line (20-of-26) . The 38 points allowed by Wheeler represented the fewest in a Class 2A title game.
Todorovic led Wheeler with 13 points. Aleksa Kojcinovic had 10 points and 13 rebounds for the Bearcats, who finished the season with 23 straight victories and a 27-1 record. It marked the first state championship for Wheeler in any sport.
Park Tudor struggled from the field, too, hitting just 26.5 percent (13-of-49). Sophomore Yogi Ferrell, who averaged 23 points on the year and scored 163 in seven tournament games, led the Panthers with 20 points against Wheeler.
Park Tudor, playing in its first state championship game, fell short in its attempt to become the first champion with double-digit losses. The Panthers, who won 10 of their last 12 games, finished at 15-11.
PARK TUDOR’S REGGIE NESBIT NAMED TRESTER AWARD WINNER
Following the game, members of the IHSAA Executive Committee named Reggie Nesbit of Park Tudor School as the winner of the Arthur L. Trester Mental Attitude Award in Class 2A Boys Basketball.
An honor roll student, Nesbit maintains a 3.6 GPA after taking five AP Courses over the last two years. He will attend the United States Military Academy at West Point beginning next fall.
Nesbit is a member of the Park Tudor Madrigal Singers and is the principle bassist in the school’s elite performing string ensemble – Renaissance Strings. He’s also served as junior class president, vice president of the CAFÉ Diversity Club and works as a student ambassador for Park Tudor’s admissions program and the freshmen orientation program.
Besides being a four-year starter in basketball and team captain, he also played four years for the football team and was named an all-state last fall. He also served as a team captain for the lacrosse team.
He is the son of Reggie and Elaine Nesbit of Indianapolis.
The award is named after the IHSAA’s first commissioner who served the Association from 1929 to 1944. The award is annually presented to a senior participant in the state finals who best demonstrates mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability.
Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the IHSAA’s corporate partner, presented a $1,000 scholarship to Park Tudor School in the name of Nesbit.
CLASS 2A POST-GAME QUOTES
Wheeler coach Mike Jones
“It’s been an unbelievable year for us. We’ve got five great senior leaders. We were able to make enough plays down the stretch against a great team, a great coached team, and a great player Yogi Ferrell.”
“When it is all said and done, nobody will remember how many three’s we missed. All they’ll know is the score. It wasn’t pretty at times. We made enough plays and free throws to win it in the fourth quarter.”
“Park Tudor did a great job in their two-three zone in the first three quarters. They made us play what they wanted to do. In the fourth quarter, we got the ball to the basket inside to the post and off the dribble and penetration. Once we started attacking the rim, good things started to happen for us.”
“We settled for too many three’s in the first three quarters. In the fourth quarter, we took the ball to the basket and made it to the free throw line.”
“Yogi Ferrell is an unbelievable player. We knew he was going to score. We tried to run at him more in the fourth quarter and make him give up the ball and make other players make some shots.”
“We’ve only played in one low scoring game this year and got beat. We wanted to play at a faster pace. In the fourth quarter, we changed our philosophy and started running at Yogi. They got some good looks, but we were fortunate they missed and we made enough plays and free throws to win the game.”
Park Tudor coach Ed Schilling
“Congratulations to Wheeler. What a fantastic team they are. What a great run they had. “
“We played hard. Sometimes it rolls in, sometimes it rolls out, but like we learned last week against Forest Park (4 OT win), it comes down to one or two made baskets and that’s the difference.”
(On Wheeler not scoring a FG in 4th Quarter) “Yea, I know they didn’t score a field goal but they sure made a lot of free throws. It’s a compliment to us that they didn’t score any field goals but they got what they needed.”
(On the final possession) “We tried to get Yogi (Kevin Ferrell) free on a screen and then flair the passer in case he (Kevin) got stopped. We were right there-the ball just didn’t go in. I couldn’t be more proud of my guys. It’s really hard to double Yogi and yet he got a good chance at that last shot.”
(Yogi on last shot) “I wasn’t trying to be impatient. I got up above the defense, had a good clear view of the rim. It looked good, it felt good, it just didn’t go in.”
(On follow up shot) “The next shot wasn’t as good a look.”
(Trester winner Reggie Nesbit) “It’s a great honor to receive that award. Thanks to the coaches, teachers and principal for nominating me. I feel very honored.”