INGOMAR - The Ingomar Falcons were able to fight off a frenzied fourth quarter by New Albany and come away with the 82-77 win over their county rivals on Thursday night.
Ingomar, ranked No. 1 by the Journal, led at one point in the final period by 13 points at 72-59, but the seventh-ranked Bulldogs stormed back to close with three points at 76-73 the closing minute.
A Clayton Stanford basket and two free throws by Zach Shugars enabled the Falcons to hold off the furious comeback by New Albany and seal the win.
“Credit New Albany for coming back, we just kept trying to find a way to win and make a play,” Ingomar coach Jonathan Ashley said. “At 70-58, I think, they just started making shots, tough shots, contested shots and we finally made enough plays and hit enough free throws.”
Ingomar led 41-40 at the half. However, Hunter Bynum and Nathan combined to score 16 of Ingomar's 20 points in the third period and get a bit of separation in the score at 61-53.
New Albany fought back with a concerted team effort in the final period as they outscored the Falcons 24-21, but the Bulldogs could not overcome the deficit they found themselves in due to the huge third quarter scoring advantage by the Falcons.
"All I can say is we had our chances," New Albany coach Scotty Shettles said.
Ingomar was led by Bynum’s 23 points and Weeden scored 20. Stanford hit for 18 and Shugars finished with 10.
Isaiah Ball was high man for New Albany with 21 points while Mitchell Shettles scored 15. Michael Casey and Michael Smith scored 11 points each.
Ingomar keeps its record unblemished at 20-0 with the win while New Albany is now 13-3.
(G) NEW ALBANY 61, INGOMAR 42
New Albany used a 23-6 scoring surge in the second quarter to erase a four-point Ingomar lead after a quarter at 17-13. Kelsey Ledbetter led the comeback with 12 points in the period, all three-pointers.
Ledbetter kept up the hot shooting in the second half as she scored eight in the third and six in the fourth to pace the Lady Bulldog offense.
"We knew shooting behind the arc is a strength that they (Ingomar) always have and knew that they would knock a few down," New Albany girls coach Micha Washington said. "After a few defensive adjustments, the girls locked in and did their jobs.
"Super proud of Kelsey and her teammates for bouncing back from the game (Ripley) earlier in the week."
Ledbetter was the game’s high scorer with 28 points and Analisa Cheairs finished with 15. Kylee Johnson was the lone Lady Falcon in double figures with 16. Macie Phifer had nine points with all nine coming on 3-pointers.
Ingomar came out firing after the tip as they connected on five 3-pointers in the first quarter. Johnson hit three from beyond the arc while Phifer and Katie Beth Hall had one each to give the Lady Falcons the 17-13 edge.
New Albany led 38-23 at the half.
New Albany is now 9-8 on the season with the win while Ingomar falls to 5-15.
TURNING POINT: New Albany closed to within three at 76-73, but the Bulldogs failed to score after a turnover. Ingomar grabbed the rebound and Clayton Stanford’s basket gave the Falcons a five point lead and helped seal the win.
POINT MAKERS: Hunter Bynum led the Falcons with 23 points, but Nathan Weeden hit some clutch baskets in the second half as he scored 15 points over the final 16 minutes.
TALKING POINT: “We just outlasted them, we just tried to make one more play even when I thought we had done some good things defensively and had gotten some control, they scored and they scored well with it. We just couldn’t put them away.” – Coach Ashley