OTTUMWA — Ames got off to a quick 6-0 start by demonstrating that they could score inside and outside.
The Little Cyclones would widen that to a 14-6 lead after one and with a 19-point second would build the lead to 33-19 at the break. The visitors would go on to down Ottumwa 58-45 in the boys’ basketball action Tuesday night at Evans Middle School.
The Little Cyclones used a 3-pointer and a three-point play by game-high scorer Sam Straub for the early lead. Straub added five more points and Ames led 14-6 after the first.
The Bulldogs were holding their own by rebounding board for board with the visitors. That would change over the last three quarters as Ames would hold a 35-17 rebound advantage at the game’s end.
Nic Young pulled the Bulldogs to within six with a score just seconds into the second quarter. Ottumwa stayed down six after Brok Hopwood hit his first 3-pointer. Again the Little Cyclones displayed the inside-outside game to increase the lead to 14 at the half.
Javan White led Ames with seven second-quarter points. The 6-7 post presence had a huge dunk during the period. Hopwood's second 3-pointer for the Bulldogs was sandwiched between two long-range shots by the Little Cyclones to close out the half.
Ottumwa’s offense sputtered at times and would go numerous possessions without a score. Ames did a good job of controlling the Bulldog post players — Carter Burns and Young. The OHS duo were never able to have big spurts together.
“They (Ames) did a good job of defending our high-low opportunities,” said Ottumwa coach Kevin Kanaskie.
Ottumwa’s best quarter was the third. The Bulldog defense controlled Straub and White, holding them to a combined four points.
Burns scored all seven of his points in the game in a five-minute stretch in the quarter. His late 3-pointer cut the lead to 10, but Ames led 44-32 after three.