Posted: Saturday, December 6, 2014 12:41 am
DELPHI – It was a matter of two points and six seconds.
A 2-pointer by Rossville’s Clayton Howard with six seconds remaining in regulation tied the game with Delphi at 62, sending the contest to overtime.
“We just had it set up to where I’d be open on the bottom and Blake [Miller] did his job and got the ball to me,” Clayton Howard said. “We executed it perfect.”
The Hornets found themselves once again down by two points with six seconds remaining, only this time in overtime. They attempted a jump shot 2-pointer to tie the game at 72, but the shot was just off the mark and the Hornets were forced to foul, giving the Oracles the opportunity to close out the game at the free throw line.
In the semifinals of the Indiana Kitchen Classic, the final score read 74-72, Delphi, but it wasn’t until midway through the fourth quarter that Rossville had the game within reach.
The Hornets opened the game with a Kyle Bordner basket, but the Oracles quickly gained the lead by hitting a 3-pointer and held onto the lead until Bordner tied the game at 51 halfway through the fourth quarter.
“We’re a young team, and they didn’t come out ready to play tough,” Rossville coach Cory Dunn said of his team’s slow start. “Delphi came out, and they played tough. I took us a quarter and a half before we figured out how the game was going to be called and how tough we needed to play.”
It was the second consecutive overtime game for the Hornets, who topped Faith Christian 77-71 in the tournament’s opening round.
Clayton Howard, after scoring a team-high 41 points against Faith Christian, once again led Rossville, this time putting up 26 points and grabbing 16 boards.
“Clayton had a really solid game,” Dunn said, also noting his senior forward played all but one minute of the game. “It was a gutty performance.”
Dunn said junior center Christian Howard and sophomore guard Matt Homco also had standout performances.
“Christian Howard had his best game of his career on varsity and Matt Homco; you can’t ask for more heart in a kid than what he’s done.”
Homco left the game midway through the fourth quarter with an apparent ankle injury, but returned shortly after. He was given the tough task of covering Delphi’s top scorer, Brent Hawn.
“Hawn’s good, and he can pick you apart,” Dunn said. “Matt did a good job on him. It’s asking a lot of a sophomore to guard a four-year starter.”
Christian Howard finished the game with 12 points and four rebounds while Homco had a team-high six assists along with six points and five rebounds.
Rossville wrapped up play in the Indiana Kitchen Classic facing North White in the third place contest. The Hornets will have the next few days to prepare for their next game as they host Central Catholic Friday.