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Carrico, Ironton ride by Pointers

Jim Walker

They say if you have a good horse, ride it.
Reid Carrico was the horse and the Ironton Fighting Tigers saddled him up.
The 6-foot-3, 225-pound junior center did his imitation of Secretariat as he scored a career-high 33 points as Ironton rode him along with some clutch play and shooting to beat the South Point Pointers 74-70 in an Ohio Valley Conference game on Friday.
“We knew that is where we wanted to go. We talked about having the discipline to be patient enough with their pressure because they do a good job pressuring the wings,” said Ironton coach P.J. Fitch.
“Most of the time when folks are under pressure, they won’t take time to look at the rim. But we did some different things to get him the ball around the rim and he made some really nice post moves. We made a couple of adjustments at halftime for him to go a little quicker because they are really quick.”
The game was tied 49-49 after the third quarter. Carrico scored to start the fourth quarter but Chance Gunther hit a 3-pointer to give South Point the lead.
A layup by Carrico and a 10-footer by Trent Hacker put Ironton ahead 57-53 and layups by Jordan Grizzle and Collin Freeman made it 63-57.
Nakyan Turner turned a steal into a layup for South Point but a steal by Landen Wilson led to a Carrico layup and it was 65-59.
Hacker and Carrico made layups for a 69-61 lead with 2:14 left and a putback moments later by Carrico had the lead at 71-62.
Austin Webb hit a 3-pointer and two foul shots as South Point cut the gap to 71-67 with 38 seconds to play.
Carrico made a foul shot by Gunther’s layup made it 72-70 with nine seconds to play.
Carrico was fouled on the inbounds play and hit bouth free throws to make it 74-70.
The first half featured seven lead changes and was tied four times.
South Point led 7-2 early before a pair of layups by Carrico gave Ironton a 12-11 first quarter lead.
Carrico had 16 points in the first half.
A 3-pointer by Trent Milleson gave Ironton its biggest lead of the half at 17-13 before South Point got a layup by Turner and a 3-pointer by Webb tied the game at 17.
Webb hit another trey for a 22-21 lead which began another series of lead changes.
Gage Salyers had a layup to tie the game at 27 only to have Gunther answer with a 12-footer and the Pointers were back on top.
Carrico’s 3-point play with 1:13 eft in the half made it 30-29. Mason Kazee sank a pair of foul shots to give the Pointers a 31-30 lead with 50 seconds on the clock.
But Trent Milleson hit a 15-footer with three seconds left in the half and Ironton was up 32-31 at the break.
“We had some role players stepping up and knocking down shots. If you had told me they would score 70 points, I’d have told you we weren’t going to win that game. It was definitely a team effort. It had to be. They’re a solid club,” said Fitch.
“We had some untimely turnovers and really unforced turnovers. That’s the mind-boggling part. We get in a hurry when we don’t need to be in a hurry, but you can never doubt the kids’ effort. They always play hard.”
Grizzle had a big game with 15 points including three key 3-pointers in the third quarter.
South Point went up 36-32 to begin the second half on a 3-pointer by Brody Blackwell and two foul shots by Webb.
Grizzle hit a pair of 3-pointers that tied the game at 38-all and hit a 3-pointer to end the quarter that tied the game at 49.
“We’ve sure been waiting on that. It makes the game a whole lot easier,” Fitch said about Grizzle’s shooting.
Carrico also had 16 rebounds to go with his point total. Milleson scored 12 points and Hacker added 10.
Webb had 26 points for the Pointers (3-4, 2-2) while Turner got 21 points and Gunther 18.
Ironton (2-3, 2-2) hosts Chesapeake on Saturday night and visits Coal Grove on Tuesday. South Point is at Rock Hill on Tuedsday.
South Point 11 20 18 21 = 70
Ironton 12 20 17 25 = 74
SOUTH POINT (3-4, 2-2): Chance Gunther 7 1 1-1 18, Nakyan Turner 7 0 7-10 21, Darryl Taylor 0 0 0-0 0, Mason Kazee 0 0 2-2 2, Austin Webb 2 5 7-8 26, Brody Blackwell 0 1 0-0 3, Jake Adams 0 0 0-0 0, Kyle Badgett 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 23-52 17-21 70. 3-pt goals: 7-17. Rebounds: 5-O, 10-D = 15 (Webb 5). Team/deadball rebounds: 4. Turnovers: 5. Fouls: 20. Fouled out: Kazee (4th 0:07).
IRONTON (2-3, 2-2): Trent Hacker 3 0 4-6 10, Jordan Grizzle 2 3 2-2 15, Reid Carrico 13 0 7-10 33, Collin Freeman 1 0 0-1 2, Trent Milleson 3 2 0-0 12, Gage Salyers 1 0 0-0 2, Brayden Easterling 0 0 0-0 0, Landen Wilson 0 0 0-0 0, Caleb Hopper 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 28-50 13-19 74. 3-pt goals: 5-12. Rebounds: 15-O, 24-D = 39 (Carrico 16, Milleson 7). Team/deadball rebounds: 3. Fouls: 16. Fouled out: None.