The Ottumwa Courier

January 3, 2013

Desert Stunner: No. 11 IHCC falter late in opening game of 2013

KEVIN PINK
Indian HIlls Information Department

COOLIDGE, Ariz. — No. 11 (DI) Indian Hills failed to hold onto a late lead and the Warriors dropped an 84-77 decision to No. 18 (DI) Central Arizona College on Tuesday night. It was the Warriors’ second loss of the season and came in the first of three contests they’ll play in Arizona this week.

Frank Williams’ field goal with just over a minute to play gave IHCC (14-2) a 77-74 lead.  But the Warriors didn’t score again as CAC (12-3) closed the game on a 10-0 run.

The Vaqueros started their run with a free throw and ended it with six-straight foul shots. Their lone field goal in the final minute was a 3-pointer by Austin Cooke that put them on top, 78-77.

Cooke was instrumental in helping Central Arizona make up a 14-point deficit in the second half. He hit three 3’s in the final half on his way to a team-high 17 points.

“We lost their shooters a couple times. That was unfortunate,” Indian Hills head coach Barret Peery said. “We had our chances. We had our opportunities.”

Jameel McKay led Indian Hills with 19 points. His layup with 1:35 to play gave the Warriors the lead at 75-74 and Williams, who scored 14 points off the bench, extended the lead to three 30 seconds later. But the Warriors couldn’t hold on.

After Central Arizona held a couple of early leads, Indian Hills raced away to a 14-point bulge in the first half.

Majok Deng helped IHCC gain control by scoring eight points, six on back-to-back 3s.

The Warriors owned a 54-41 advantage early in the second half, but the Vaqueros pulled within two at 58-56 about midway through the half. Vincentas Alexsandravicius drained a trio of 3-pointers to help CAC come back.

Sparked by two-straight baskets by Williams, the Warriors stemmed the tide and built the lead back to 13 at 71-58 with around six minutes to play.

Again, the hosts surged, this time with an 11-0 run in less than three minutes to cut the deficit to 71-69.

There were two lead changes after that with Cooke’s 3-pointer with 27.2 seconds remaining giving CAC the lead for good.

“I was a little bit worried about us not having the momentum and being a little bit sluggish from not having played for a couple of weeks,” Peery said. “We tried to get in going in practice and we tried get it going as live as we could. In the second half, they took it to us and we didn’t bounce back as well as we should have.”

Ronald Ross scored 17 points for the Warriors and hit four 3-pointers. He was one of three IHCC players to foul out.

“You’re not going to win many games when you have that many people foul out,” Peery said. “Anytime you have that many guys in foul trouble, you’re not going to be able to call upon the right people and you’re going to have a chance to lose, not win.”

The loss came in the 11th-ranked Warriors’ first of five consecutive road games. They’ll play two more times on the current trip, at South Mountain CC on Thursday night and Mesa CC on Saturday night. Both games start at 8:30 p.m. Iowa time.

“We’ll bounce back. We have another tough game on Thursday and another tough game Saturday,” Peery said. “We have to figure out to handle our composure, handle a lead and figure out a way to get a win.”

No. 18 (DI) Central Arizona 84, No. 11 (DI) Indian Hills 77   

IHCC (77) — Jameel McKay 19, Ronald Ross 17, Frank Williams 14, Majok Deng 8, Dustin Hogue 8, Richard Amardi 6, Trinson White 5. Totals 29-62 11-20 77.

3-point goals — 8-23 (R. Ross 4-5). Fouled out — Hogue, R. Ross, Gary Williams, Jr. Rebounds — 42 (McKay 15). Assists — 23 (Hogue 4, R. Ross 4). Steals — 9 (Hogue 4). Blocks — 4 (McKay 3). Total fouls — 29 (Technicals - McKay). Turnovers — 22.

Central Arizona (84) — Austin Cooke 17, DesJuan Newton 16, Vincentas Aleksandravicius 15, Herve Aholode 14, Deandre Mathieu 14, Caleb Carter 5, Zakarius Wells 2, LeBrant Walker 1. Totals 28-58 19-32 84.

3-point goals — 9-17 (Cooke 5-7). Rebounds — 37 (Aholode 12). Assists — 21 (Mathieu 8). Steals — 6 (Newton 2, Wells 2). Blocks — 3 (Aholode 2). Total fouls — 16 (Technicals - Newton). Turnovers — 16.

Halftime: Indian Hills 43, Central Arizona 31