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District Bound

JACKSON – When one door closes, a window opens. Or in the case of the Ironton Fighting Tigers, four windows open.

The Coal Grove Hornets tried to use gimmick defenses to shut down Ironton’s leading scorer Timmy Kochendoerfer, but that left the other players open and they took advantage of the opportunity.

Travis Elliott had 18 points and 12 rebounds while Zac Carter scored 12 points as Ironton beat the Hornets 60-35 Saturday to win the Division III sectional tournament at Jackson High School.

Kochendoerfer scored 12 points of his 15 points in the fourth quarter after getting a trey in the third stanza. LaFon said the senior guard’s scoring was part of the game plan.

“We talked about them playing some junk defenses against Timmy and he was very good about not forcing anything,” said LaFon. “In the second half we worked him into the offense more.”

Devin Monnier scored nine points to lead Coal Grove (14-6). Oakie Haynes had seven points, four assists and four steals.

“We got run down a little. Ironton has a good ball club and we used some trick defense to stay in the game,” said Coal Grove coach Randy Ward.

“We wore down at the end, but we gave a good effort. We wanted to give a good account and we did. I don’t think it was really a 25-point game.”

Coal Grove came out using 3-pointers by Haynes and Wayne Sparks to take a 6-4 lead.

A 17-footer by Malcolm Morton tied the game at 10 before Haynes picked up a loose ball and raced to the other end of the floor for a layup. Trey Fletcher’s layup with under a minute to play in the quarter tied the game at 12-12.

Morton drained a triple to start the second quarter and ignite an 11-2 run that put Ironton up 23-14.

Monnier got the Hornets back in the game with two mid-range jumpers and it was 23-18.

Elliott had his armed grabbed trying to put back a missed shot and hit both ends of a one-and-one to put Ironton up 25-18 with 29 seconds left in the half.

Ironton limited Coal Grove to just six shots in the third quarter. Elliott hit two foul shots to give Ironton a 35-22 lead at the 2:51 mark and Carter’s trifecta with 37 seconds left opened up a 38-24 lead.

Coal Grove’s Cody Damron and Kochendoerfer traded 3-pointers to start the fourth quarter, but Kochendoerfer scored nine of Ironton’s next 10 points and the lead was 51-33 with 4:18 to play.

“We took a couple of bad shots to start the second half and they got up 12. We have to press and we don’t have the depth to come back,” said Ward.

Ironton (18-3) will play Nelsonville-York at 8 p.m. Monday, March 8, at Ohio University in the district semifinals.

Coal Grove 12 6 6 11 = 35

Ironton 12 13 13 22 = 60

COAL GROVE (14-6): Oakie Haynes 3-10 0-0 7, Evan Ferguson 2-8 2-2 6, Devin Monnier 4-9 1-2 9, Wayne Sparks 2-8 0-0 6, Cody Damron 3-6 0-0 7, Dion Cunningham 0-2 0-1 0, Jacob Pauley 0-0 0-0 0, Bryan Jenkins 0-0 0-0 0, John Kazee 0-0 0-0 0, Colten Bryant 0-0 0-0 0, Brandon Doyle 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 14-42 3-5 35. Fouls: 20. Fouled out: Damron (4th 0:59). 3-point goals: 4-14 (Haynes 1-2, Ferguson 0-2, Monnier 0-2, Sparks 2-6, Damron 1-1, Cunningham 0-1). Rebounds: 6 offense, 17 defense = 23 (Damron 5, Ferguson 5, Sparks 4). Team rebounds: 5. Assists: 8 (Haynes 4, Ferguson 3). Steals: 6 (Haynes 4). Turnovers: 20. Blocked shots: 2 (Damron 2).

IRONTON (18-3): Travis Elliott 5-10 8-11 18, Timmy Kochendoerfer 3-6 7-8 15, Zac Carter 3-8 4-4 12, Erin Edens 1-2 0-0 2, Trey Fletcher 1-4 1-2 3, Malcolm Morton 2-5 1-4 6, J.P. Taylor 0-4 0-0 0, Josh Murphy 0-0 0-0 0, Michael Turner 0-0 0-0 0, Trevor White 1-1 0-0 2, Jonathan Norris 0-0 0-0 0, Nick Culbertson 0-1 2-4 2, Nolan Johnson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 16-41 23-33 60. Fouls: 14. Fouled out: None. 3-point goals: 5-12 (Kochendoerfer 2-3, Carter 2-5, Morton 1-2, Taylor 0-2). Rebounds: 13 offense, 21 defense = 34 (Elliott 12, Carter 4). Team rebounds: 4. Assists:9 (Carter 4, Elliott 2). Steals: 7 (Kochendoerfer 2, Morton 2). Turnovers: 16. Blocked shots: Turner.