ThunderRidge Wins Tip-Off Classic
The ThunderRidge Grizzlies defeated the Chatfield Chargers 62-55 to win the Tip Off Classic for the fifth consecutive year. The Grizzlies held off a feisty Charges team despite not having the services of talented senior forward Austin Mueller. The Chargers stood their ground against the #2 ranked team in the state, holding the lead at multiple points during the game and nearly pulled off the upset but ThunderRidge made seven out of eight free throws in the last minute to secure the victory.
After a back in forth first quarter Chatfield held a narrow 14-12 lead over ThunderRidge. Senior guard Cameron Pearson played well in the quarter providing solid ball handling, confidence and paced the Chargers with five points. Clay Verk was a problem for Chatfield most of the day scoring five of his game high 18 points in the quarter.
A Troy Brady three pointer put ThunderRidge up early in the 2nd quarter but the quarter belong to Charger junior Lucus St. Germain. St. Germain went on his own 8-2 run that included a four point play to put Chatfield back up 25-24 with 2:00 minutes left to play in the quarter. Meanwhile ThunderRidge only scored two points in the last 3:10 of the quarter and went into half time trailing 28-26. ThunderRidge struggled at times with Chatfield’s press with cased turnovers or bad shots.
Chatfield’s defense and hard work on the boards held the Grizzlies to two points for nearly the first four minutes of the third quarter. The Charges got baskets from three different players to help build the six point lead it held with 3:25 left to play in the quarter. Then junior Corey Seng got it going for the Grizziles scoring eight of his 10 points in the quarter in the last 2:45 of the quarter. The Chargers were unable to answer the 10 -0 run the Grizzlies finished the quarter on to take a 40-36 lead.
The Grizzlies built a nine point lead after quick baskets by Verk and Seng with 7:00 left in the game. ThunderRidge wasn’t able to pull away from the Chargers. After a 3 pointer by Pearson Chatfield junior Joe Miks started taking advantage of the Grizzly defense scoring 9 points in the quarter and with his last three pointer cut the ThunderRidge lead to 53-51 with 1:25 to play. Another Pearson basket pulled the Chargers to with in one with 1:17 left in the game. Chatfield could not get the turnovers in the last minute it need to pull even with the Grizzlies. Meanwhile ThunderRidge Verk, Seng and Brady each sank free throws in the final minute to give the Grizzlies the win.
Double Figure scorers
ThunderRidge – Verk 18, Seng 16, Brady 14
Chatfield – Pearson 15, Miks 13
3rd Place Game
Dalven Brushier led all scorers with 28 points to lead a smaller quicker Doherty squad over the bigger Fairview team. Despite the neither team really finding much of a groove Doherty was able to exploit their advantage at the guard positions with Brushier getting into the lane to score fairly easily and Brevin Brimble added 18 points with 15 coming the second half to fend off the Fairview charge.
Despite Fairview having three players in double figures: Cole Heisner and Chris Weatherly each scored 11 and Frank Ryder added a team high 13 points, they failed to consistently take advantage of their size advantage in the post and dominate on the boards.
5th place game
Cherokee Trail 75
The Cherokee Trail Cougars were rolling after a 25 point first quarter and dominating the lane on both ends of the floor. George Washington was failing to stop penetration and gave wide lanes to the basket that the Cougars took full advantage of. After Cougar point guard Jaizec Lottie left the game after sustaining an injury it appeared that the Patriots may have caught a break. However Cougar senior forward David Thornton scored 1o points in the quarter and seemingly grabbed nearly every rebound to build a 17 point lead by half time.
The Patriots put together one of its patented comebacks that they have become known for here in the early part of the season. GW Sophmore Dylan Kountz was about as unstoppable at Thornton was for CT. Kountz scored 19 of his 30 points in the second half. Sophomore Jon’il Fugett and junior Jervay Green also contributed to the Patriot comeback each hitting big shots. Kountz free throws cut the Cougrs lead to three with 1:25 left in the game, the a Green lay up cut the lead to 1 with 55 second left to play. Both Thornton and sophomore guard Tyson Rodgers combined to go 6 for 6 from the free throw line in the in final minute to thwart the Patriots. Ronnie Barfield sank a free throw with 2 seconds left to give the Cougars the 75-72 victory.
Thornton scored 19 of his game high 36 points in the second half, he also tallied 16 rebounds.
Double figure scorers
GW – Kountz 30, Green 17, J. Fugett 11
CT – Thornton 36, Ian Kelly – 11
Seventh Place Game
Denver South 73
South got it’s second win of the season with an outstanding performance from sophomore Courtney Dean 19 pts 9 rebounds. Chudier Bile chipped in a 15 point 11 rebound outting while Jamison Jendrusch added 18 points and 6 assists. Chaparral was lead by Dom Coleman’s 20 points.