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Ironton faces toughest challenge against Upper Room

Ironton Fighting Tigers' senior forward Nolan Johnson scores in a win on Tuesday against Russell. Ironton plays prep academy power Upper Room Christian at 7 p.m. on Friday at Chesapeake High School. (The Ironton Tribune / Tony Shotsky of Southern Ohio Sports Photos.com)


Tribune Sports Editor


There’s a time change and a site change, but no talent change.

The Ironton Fighting Tigers game against Upper Room Christian Academy will now be at 7 p.m. Friday and the site is Chesapeake High School.

The game is part of the Huntington (W.Va.) Prep NIKE Tri-state Hoops Classic. The game originally was scheduled to be played at Memorial Field House and then Big Sandy Superstore Arena. The game was moved due to schedule conflicts.

Ironton (12-3) will be facing an Eagles prep team that features 6-foot-3 point guard Rodney Purvis who has signed with North Carolina State. He is listed as one of the top five point guards in the country.

He turned down offers from Ohio State, UConn, Missouri, Memphis, Virginia and Virginia Commonwealth.

Upper Room also features 6-8 Tyrek Coger who is being recruiting by several Division I programs including Missouri and N.C. State.

“No disrespect to anyone else on our schedule, but this will be the best team we face all season,” said Ironton coach Mark LaFon. “

“Purvis and Coger are legitimate Division I prospects. This will be a tough game, but our guys are anxious to meet the challenge.”

Tickets for the game night are $6. The second game has Huntington Prep with Div. I prospect Andrew Wiggins — called the LeBron James of Canada — going against Christian Faith, N.C., at 8:45 p.m.

Saturday’s games start with a key match-up between the unbeaten Fairland Lady Dragons and the fourth-ranked Oak Hill Lady Oaks at noon.

Here is the rest of the schedule:

1:30 Christian Faith and American Basketball Institute, 3:00 Huntington St. Joseph and Mountain Mission, 4:30 Tolsia vs. Imani Christian, 6:15 Upper Room Christian and Huntington Prep; and 7:45 Chesapeake vs. Mingo Central.

Tickets on Saturday are $8.