• 43°

Express rolls by ‘gritty’ Ironton

Ironton Fighting Tigers' senior Travis Elliott (right) battles for a rebound against Huntington Prep's Ibrahima Dmijde in Tuesday's game. (The Ironton Tribune / Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos. com)

By JIM WALKER

Tribune Sports Editor

The results may have been a failure, but the Ironton Fighting Tigers got an “A” for effort.

Despite playing the powerhouse Huntington (W.Va.) Prep Express, Ironton didn’t shy from the challenge as the Fighting Tigers suffered a 76-40 loss Tuesday on senior night.

“It was ugly, but our kids gave a great effort,” said Ironton coach Mark LaFon.

“I know this was a tough challenge for our kids, but I’m glad we had them on the schedule. They pressed us and we had a couple of bad passes early, but we did a good job after that breaking the press and running our offense.”

The game was close early before the Express went up 18-7 on a 3-pointer by Negus Webster-Chan.

Ironton (12-7) got within 18-12 with a minute to go in the quarter after a 3-point play by Trey Fletcher and a layup by Travis Elliott.

The Express (20-3) scored the final five points of the quarter and then used two triples by Charles Lee and another by Maurice Aniefiok to go up 32-12 at the start of the second quarter.

But Ironton battled back to get within 32-20 as Fletcher made a layup and then Zac Carter hit a trifecta and came up with a steal that he converted into a 3-point play with 4:31 left in the half.

Aniefiok answered with a triple of his own and a layup for a 37-20 lead and Ironton never got any closer.

Webster-Chan scored nine points in the third quarter as the Express pulled away to a 60-35 lead.

Elliott and Fletcher scored 13 each to pace Ironton with Carter adding 10.

Elliott had four rebounds while Geoff Delawder and Fletcher had three each. Carter had four assists and four steals.

The game was the final home appearance for Josh Murphy, Delawder and Elliott.

“I am proud of all our kids and especially our seniors. They’ve put in a lot of work over the past four years,” said LaFon.

Webster-Chan led four players in double figures for the Express with 22. Aniefiok had 17, Lee 13 and Jeremiah Davis 10.

Huntington 23 20 17 16 = 76

Ironton 12 11 12 5 = 40

HUNTINGTON PREP (20-3): Charles Lee 3 2 1-1 13, Maurice Aniefiok 4 2 3-4 17, Negus Webster-Chan 5 4 0-0 22, Ibrahima Dmijde 4 0 1-2 9, Jeremiah Davis 4 0 2-2 10, Jai Chhabra 0 0 0-0 0, Herve Aholode 0 1 0-0 3, Gabriel Williams 0 0 0-0 0, Sim Bhullar 0 0 0-2 0, Francis Klapway 1 0 0-0 2. Totals: 30-53 7-11 76. Fouls: 12. Fouled out: None. 3-point goals: 9-25. Rebounds: 13 offense, 25 defense = 38 (Djimde 10, Aniefiok 8, Webster-Chan 8). Team/deadball rebounds: 1. Assists: 17 (Lee 5, Webster-Chan 5, Davis 3). Steals: 4 (Aniefiok 2, Webster-Chan 2). Turnovers: 12.

IRONTON (12-7): Geoff Delawder 0 0 0-0 0, Travis Elliott 5 0 3-3 13, Zac Carter 3 1 1-1 10, Josh Murphy 1 0 0-0 2, Trey Fletcher 4 1 2-3 13, Nick Culbertson 0 0 0-0 0, Josh Glover 0 0 0-0 0, Nolan Johnson 1 0 0-0 2, Tanner Dutey 0 0 0-0 0, Tanner Schweickart 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 16-45 6-7 40. Fouls: 6. Fouled out: None. 3-point goals: 2-15. Rebounds: 5 offense, 10 defense = 15 (Elliott 4, Delawder 3, Fletcher 3). Assists: 6 (Carter 4). Steals: 6 (Carter 4). Turnovers: 12.