Ironton FIghting Tigers’ senior Jalen Schweickart (32) drives to the basket during Friday’s senior night game against the Fairland Dragons. Schweickert hit a pair of 3-pointers in a 75-55 win. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Archived Story

Focused Fighting Tigers roll past Dragons, 75-55

Published 11:44pm Saturday, February 16, 2013

Jim Walker


The Ironton Fighting Tigers took a page out of the postman’s pledge.

Although Ironton’s seven seniors were saying an emotional goodbye to their basketball home and fans, like postmen, they wouldn’t be kept from their appointed rounds.

Ironton avoided the senior night distractions as they rolled past the Fairland Dragons 75-55 Friday.

“Their focus was razor sharp. They came out firing on all cylinders,” said Ironton coach Mark LaFon.

Ironton’s seven seniors weren’t just in the spotlight prior to the game but also after the ball was tossed in the air to begin the contest.

Trey Fletcher scored 18 points and grabbed 9 rebounds to lead Ironton (18-2).

Zac Carter had 10 points and 7 assists, Trevor White pulled down 10 rebounds, Josh Glover had 6 points and 2 blocked shots, Aaron Stephens had 7 rebounds, Darrius Boykin scored a season-high 8 points and Jalen Schweickart had a career-high 7 points.

LaFon said this team and its seniors have not only had great careers but have helped continue the Fighting Tigers’ basketball tradition.

“There are a lot of guys who came before them. We talked a lot about it. You have to string (good years) together to be a program. For 10 years we’ve been at a high level of basketball.”

The senior class currently has a 72-20 record during their four years.

A big key in the game was Ironton’s dominance on the boards. Ironton had 51 rebounds including 24 on offense. Fairland finished with 31 rebounds.

Fairland (16-5) was led by Dionte Braye and Thayer Flynn with 8 points each.

“(Ironton is) physically strong at every position,” said Fairland coach Nathan Speed. “We’d get a stop on the first shot and they’d get the rebound and back it out and set it up and start again. They’re a good team.”

Fletcher and White combined for 14 points in the first quarter and Carter had 6 points including 4 of 4 at the foul line as Ironton built a 29-19 lead.

The Fighting Tigers led by as many as 12.

Fletcher followed up his own shot with 1:20 left in the half for a 37-20 lead but Cody Midkiff hit a long 3-pointer at the buzzer and it was 39-23 at the break.

Glover’s baseline jumper and Fletcher’s trifecta to begin the second half had Ironton up 44-23. The Fighting Tigers were up 55-33 on a trey by Trey. A foul shot by Chance Short had Fairland down 55-24 at the end of the quarter.

Both teams emptied their benches for the fourth quarter.

Fairland got within 59-45 on a layup by Jake Wireman and a 3-pointer by Phillip Beaty, but senior Schweickart buried a trifecta and Tristan Cox followed suit with his own triple at the 3:06 mark to make it 65-45 and secured the outcome.

Schweickart said it was it was a fun night but that the seniors didn’t have any special motive.

“We just said go out there and have fun,” said Schweickart who had a career-high 7 points including two 3-pointers.

Fairland played Chesapeake on Saturday night and will play in the Div. II sectional tournament at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23, at Southeastern High School.

“We got a lot of kids in the game and got a lot of experience for the tournament. We’re not going to face a team this good,” said Speed who substituted freely throughout the game.

Fairland 14 9 11 21 = 55

Ironton 29 10 16 20 = 75

FAIRLAND (16-5): Cody Midkiff 1 1 1-2 6, Luke Phillips 2 0 0-0 4, Nathan Campbell 0 00-0 0, Kyle Raines 1 0 0-0 2, Evan Maddox 0 2 0-0 6, Chance Short 1 1 1-3 6, Thayer Flynn 0 2 2-2 8, Tyler Campbell 0 0 0-0 0, Dionte Braye 4 0 0-2 8, Phillip Beaty 0 2 0-0 6, Jacob Warner 1 1 0-0 5, Matt McComas 1 0 0-1 2, Jake Wireman 1 0 0-0 2, Robert Thompson 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 21-56 4-10 55. 3-point goals: 9-27. Rebounds: 10 offense, 21 defense = 31 (Maddox 4, Braye 4, Warner 4). Team rebounds: 9. Assists: 3 (Maddox 2). Steals: 3 (Maddox 2). Turnovers: 13. Blocked shots: 0. Fouls: 9. Fouled out: None.

IRONTON (18-2): Zac Carter 2 0 6-6 10, Josh Glover 3 0 0-0 6, Trevor White 3 0 1-2 7, Trey Fletcher 3 4 0-0 18, Aaron Stephens 2 0 0-0 4, Darrius Boykin 1 2 0-0 8, Tristan Cox 1 1 0-0 5, Joe Bowling 1 0 0-0 2, Jake Long 0 0 1-2 1, Nate Garred 2 1 0-0 7, Jalen Schweickart 0 2 1-27, Isaac Sherman 0 0 0-0 0, Trevor Easterlng 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 28-73 9-12 75. 3-point goals: 10-24. Rebounds: 24 offense, 27 defense = 51 (White 10, Fletcher 9, Stephens 7, Bowing 6). Team rebounds: 3. Assists: 15 (Carter 7, Fletcher 2, Bowling 2). Steals: 5 (Carter 2). Turnovers: 7. Blocked shots: 8 (Fletcher 2, Glover 2). Fouls: 12. Fouled out: None.

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