INDIANAPOLIS – Friday night may have had some doubting the chances of a competitive Boys’ game between the Indiana All-Stars and their rivals from Kentucky.
At Freedom Hall the Hoosier State stars embarrassed their opponents by 54 points-the biggest margin of victory in any of the previous games against the Commonwealth-and 24 hours later they were set to meet again at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
But this time Kentucky was more up to the challenge and prevented the Indiana All-Stars from turning the game into a rout-giving the 6,209 fans a reason to stay in their seats for the 4o minutes of the contest.
Outside of a couple of minutes in the first half, however, the Indiana stars were still able to hold a consistent advantage over their rivals en route to an 84-77 victory that gives them bragging rights over the Commonwealth for another season.
Devin Davis, a future Indiana Hoosier, led the team with 19 points and 11 rebounds while 2013 Mr. Basketball Zak Irvin (Hamilton Southeastern and Michigan) put in 16 and Bryson Scott 14. Kentucky’s Mr. Basketball Dominique Hawkins led all scorers with 33 points, hitting 10-of-19 from the field.
Unlike Friday night’s game, Kentucky was up to the challenge and jumped out to the early 6-0 lead. But Davis began to heat up and back-to-back buckets with 11:50 to go in the half gave Indiana their first lead of the game, which they would expand to eight going into halftime.
Despite the burst at the end of the half Kentucky wouldn’t go away. Towards the end of the game Hawkins got the lead down to three on three different occasions, the last on a pair of free throws with 3:37 to go in the game. But Davis proved to be too much and his pair of transition buckets on consecutive possessions pushed the lead to seven to seal the sweep over Kentucky.
GIRLS GAME: INDIANA 100 KENTUCKY 86
Once again the top player on their team was forced to watch from the sidelines.
After suffering a knee injury on Friday at Freedom Hall in Louisville, 2013 Ms. Basketball Stephanie Mavunga was on the bench for the Indiana All-Stars second game in as many days against Kentucky at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Saturday.
But unilke Friday, where the best Girls’ prep player from the Commonwealth beat those from the Hoosier State 84-78, Indiana was able to find a way to make up for the loss of Mavunga. A big second half run helped the Indiana squad jump out to as much as a 22-point lead as the beat Kentucky 100-86 to earn a split for the 2013 All-Star series.
Roncalli’s Bridget Perry led the Indiana team with 23 points while Hamilton Southeastern’s Taya Reimer scored 19 and had ten rebounds to earn the game’s MVP award. Ariana Simmons had 14 points as well while Rhagen Smith scored 11. Kentucky Ms. Basketball Makayla Epps led her team with 23 points.
With Mavunga rooting the the team on from the bench Indiana finished the first half on a 7-0 run to take a 38-32 lead to halftime, with Perry leading the way with 10 first half points. Indiana continued the streak in the second half as they went on a 20-4 run to open up a 20-point lead which they would never relinquish.
Reimer was the critical component to the strong second half as she hit 6-of-7 shots from the field and scored a team-high 15 points along with six rebounds to help the Indiana All-Stars earn a split.