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Great start propels Indiana boys' rout of Kentucky

By DAVID RISLEY - drisley@thecouriertimes.com

LOUISVILLE — After Wednesday night’s 11-point win over the Indiana Junior Boys in New Castle Fieldhouse, New Castle’s Luke Bumbalough told this writer that his Indiana Seniors Boys team would have to play better to beat Kentucky.

Friday night at Bellarmine University in Louisville, the Indiana Boys did just that as they rolled to a 19-4 advantage in the first half and never looked back as they pummeled the Kentucky Boys 97-64.

Kentucky played without its Mr. Basketball, Dontaie Allen, who is going to play basketball for the University of Kentucky. Allen, a 6-6 forward, averaged 42.9 points per game in his senior year of high school at Pendleton County. He is recovering from an injury, hence his absence from the game.

Loaded with players who are going on to play basketball at NCAA Division I colleges and universities, the Indiana boys took that 19-4 lead with 12:45 remaining in the first half, prompting the Bluegrass boys to take a timeout.

Kentucky began chipping away at its deficit and eventually got it down below double digits at 30-21 with 5:21 left in the first half.

Bumbalough had entered the contest with 7:20 remaining in the first half and did his part to help boost the Hoosier boys’ advantage back above double digits.

After contributing a pair of assists, a rebound, and a steal, Bumbalough canned two free throws with 1:41 remaining in the first half to give Indiana its biggest lead up to that point at 40-24.

The Hoosier boys then proceeded to outscore Kentucky 8-2 the remainder of the half, capped by Isaiah Thompson’s fourth three-pointer of the opening 20 minutes, to take a 48-26 lead into intermission.

The first-half shooting parameters pretty much explained what happened on the court. Indiana shot 52 percent from the field, including 38.5 percent from three-point territory, while Kentucky could muster only 26.3 percent accuracy from the floor, including a paltry 9.09 percent from behind the arc.

Thompson had 14 of Indiana’s points at the break, Indiana Mr. Basketball Trayce Jackson-Davis had nine, and Brandon Newman seven.

J.J. Kalakon led Kentucky with seven points in the first half.

After Indiana expanded its advantage to 51-28 on a Newman trey early in the second half, the Bluegrass boys proceeded to outscore the Hoosier boys 7-2 to trim their deficit below 20 points at 53-35 with 16:40 remaining.

But Indiana ramped up its offense again, outscored Kentucky 13-4 over the next 2:34 of play to boost its lead to 66-39, prompting a timeout by the Bluegrass boys.

The Indiana advantage reached 30 points at 73-43 with 10:52 left in the contest, and Bumbalough re-entered the game at the 9:48 mark with the Hoosier boys up 73-47.

Over the next 6:46 of action, Bumbalough had a rebound, assist, and steal to help Indiana expand its advantage a bit more to 89-58 before taking a seat on the sidelines with 3:02 left in the contest.

The Hoosier boys outscored Kentucky 8-6 over the remaining period of time to record the impressive 97-64 victory.

Newman led the Indiana boys in scoring with 18 points, Thompson was next with 17, and Jackson-Davis added 16.

Isaiah Cozart led Kentucky with 10 points, and Kalakon was right behind him with nine points.