Chieftains click in Tip-Off final
BASCOM — Roger Jury wasn’t sure what to expect Saturday afternoon in the finals of the Chieftain Tip-Off Classic.
The Hopewell-Loudon coach had watched his team obliterate Hardin Northern, 74-29, in the semifinals Friday night. But that game had started late, and caused for a quick turnaround Saturday. Hopewell-Loudon tipped off with Ridgedale at close to 2 p.m.
It’s not especially common in high school boys basketball.
“We really wanted to see how they handled that, mentally,” Jury said.
As it turned out, the coach didn’t need to worry.
“I thought our start was fantastic,” Jury said.
In truth, it was a good beginning, middle and end for the Chieftains,who scored the game’s first six points and led 18-8 after the first quarter. The Rockets cut the lead to eight early in the second quarter, but the Chieftains answered, on their way to a 62-34 thumping.
For the second-straight season, Hopewell-Loudon went 2-0 at its tournament.
Jordyn Jury, who was named the event’s most valuable player, nearly had a triple double Saturday, with 16 points, eight rebounds and 10 assists.
“He’s our point guard, and the good thing is, he’s a scoring point guard, and he’s a big point guard” coach Jury said. “Some teams have a point guard, period. Some teams have a point guard who is a scorer, some teams have a point guard that’s big, but he’s not a great ball-handler. (Jury) creates a lot of problems.”
Travis Milligan, who made four three pointers to account for all 12 of his points, and Luke Bolte, who scored 11, also paced H-L.
Coach Jury said Bolte’s play is opening up things for the other Chieftains.
“Luke Bolte, people are so aware of him right now,” coach Jury said. “He really patrols the paint, does a good job, and the other kids are unselfish.
“Milligan’s one of the best shooters in the league,” coach Jury said. “When we move the ball and get it out to him, he shoots it very well. We’ve just gotta put ourselves in the right positions.
Ridgedale was led by Adam Beard, who had four 3-pointers and finished with 12 points, Sam Leach had seven points.
“Right now, we’re very young,” Ridgedale coach Nathan Loney said. “We’re trying to instill in the kids’ heads building possessions. Each time you go down the court, you can’t take a possession off, especially against (H-L), when they shoot the ball as well as they do.”
Hopewell-Loudon will not play again until Friday, when it opens Blanchard Valley Conference play when it hosts Riverdale.
Coach Jury said the Chieftains will focus on the little things.
“It’s the little pieces and the attention to detail,” he said. “Depending how good a team you want to be, if it’s trying to win a league championship, or trying to play well in the sectional or even go further than that, it’s the little detail things. So it doesn’t matter if you were in a 30-point game the night before, or a three-point game, there’s always things you can learn.”