MOUNT STERLING — Montgomery County, which had its perfect record spoiled eight days earlier, knocked off the last undefeated team in Kentucky by beating Wayne County 81-72 Sunday afternoon in the Joe B. Hall Prep Classic.
Montgomery County senior Bryan Wallace said Wayne County's 24-0 record "added a lot of motivation" to the Indians' play.
Wallace looked motivated, getting 27 points, seven rebounds and six assists.
"He's a really good point guard," Wayne County Coach Rodney Woods said. "We probably had a harder time guarding him than anybody we've had to guard this season. He was really effective."
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Wallace had lots of help as No. 18 Montgomery County improved its record to 22-1.
Deante Cisero, a 6-foot-6 senior, had 16 points and nine rebounds. Darius Jones, a 6-4 senior, had 12 points and nine rebounds. Their length gave the Indians trouble inside.
Blake Thomas was 5-for-5 from the field for 11 points. Xavier Piersawl had nine points, including a couple of timely three-pointers.
Montgomery County Coach Jason Holland said his team was "stung" by its loss at Elizabethtown on Feb. 1, and it was determined to make Sunday's game a tough environment for Wayne County.
"For us, it's about our home court," Holland said. "Our seniors made it a goal not to lose at home this year. We've got two games left to do that."
No. 7 Wayne County, which rallied from 16 down to beat Knott Central on Saturday, couldn't catch up after the Indians went on a 19-4 run in the third quarter. The Cardinals closed the gap to 63-57 early in the fourth, but the comeback stalled there.
Trey Blevins led Wayne County with 26 points and Peyton Woods had 21. Corey Stearns added 14 points and eight rebounds.
Rodney Woods said his team's 17 turnovers (double their average) and poor transition defense cost them.
How will the Cards handle their first loss?
"The biggest thing is to take ownership, admit you didn't play well, realize what you did wrong and get better," Woods said. "If you don't do that, things can go south in a hurry."
No. 15 Knott Central 72, Fleming County 63: Less than 24 hours after Knott Central blew a 16-point lead and lost to Wayne County, the Patriots found themselves in familiar (and uncomfortable) territory in the Joe B. Hall Prep Classic.
After leading Fleming County by 19 points in the first half, Knott Central trailed the Panthers 55-54 midway through the fourth quarter.
What was going through the mind of Patriots' junior guard Camron Justice?
"Not again," he said. "We had to make sure it didn't happen again."
Knott Central came out of a timeout and went on an 11-0 run to seal the victory.
The Patriots went to a box-and-one on Fleming County's Troy Steward, who was on his way to a career-high 47 points, including 9-for-15 on three-pointers. The 6-4 senior, didn't get off a shot during Knott Central's 11-0 run.
Knott Central had three guys sharing the load. Justice had 27 points. Evan Hall had 22 points and 10 rebounds, and Chance Cornett had 20 points and 13 rebounds.
Fleming County Coach Mark Starns sensed before the game his team wasn't ready to play. The Panthers' first possession ended in a five-second turnover. "That set the tone for the whole first half," Starns said.
The Panthers responded to the challenge in the second half but couldn't finish off their comeback.
"I thought my guys got beat up most of the night," Starns said. "We were working and working, but we got beat up trying to score."
Darion Burns, a 5-10 senior guard, played in his second game since coming back from knee surgery. He had five points in 20 minutes.
No. 19 Perry Central 73, Madison Central 62: The Commodores' inside-outside duo of Justin Johnson and Braxton Beverly was too much for Madison Central.
Johnson, a 6-7 senior and Mr. Basketball finalist who has signed with WKU, had 24 points and 14 rebounds. Beverly, a 5-10 sophomore point guard, had 25 points and seven assists.
Perry Central took control midway through the first half when it went on an 11-0 run to open a 35-18 lead.
Madison Central, coming off an 81-80 upset of No 5 Holmes on Saturday, was led by Isaiah Johnson's 16 points and Cameron Thomas' 14. DeMarcus George had 10 points and 13 rebounds.
No. 21 Southwestern 67, No. 17 Henry Clay 60: Henry Clay rallied from a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit and led 60-59 with 2:40 left.
But the Blue Devils went empty after that. Southwestern scored the last eight points to get the victory.
Dylan Gaskin led the Warriors with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Hunter Cromer, Adam Isaacs and Steven Fitzgerald also scored in double figures. Southwestern shot 52 percent while limiting Henry Clay to 42 percent.
Henry Clay, playing without senior star Jordan Green (elbow injury), was led by Jeremiah Tisdale's 14 points, seven rebounds and four steals.
Colby Barnes had 13 points and Isaiah Tisdale added 10 points and three assists for the Devils.
Montgomery Co. 81, Wayne Co. 72
WAYNE COUNTY (24-1) — Woods 21, Blevins 26, Stearns 14, Gillespie 2, Perkins 7, Gardner 2.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY (22-1) — Wallace 27, Thomas 11, Cisero 16, Jones 12, Piersawl 9, Hodgsen 2, Chism 2, Hall 2.
Wayne County 15 20 14 23—72
Montgomery County 20 15 25 21—81
Knott Central 73, Fleming Co. 62
FLEMING COUNTY (17-7) — Steward 47, Saunders 5, Burns 5, Williams 3, McKee 2.
KNOTT CENTRAL (18-6) — Justice 27, Hall 22, Cornett 20, Criston 2, Johnson 2.
Fleming County 9 12 27 14—62
Knott Central 20 17 13 23—73
Perry Central 73, Madison Central 62
PERRY CENTRAL (18-5) — Johnson 24, Beverly 25, Fugate 3, Neace 3, Toomer 6, Tobler 12.
MADISON CENTRAL (17-8) — Thomas 14, Johnson 16, Alexander 10, George 10, Ramsey 2, Humphrey 4, Jones 6.
Perry Central 17 22 17 17—73
Madison Central 8 16 19 19—62
Southwestern 67, Henry Clay 60
SOUTHWESTERN (18-4) — Gaskin 19, Isaacs 12, Cromer 13, Fitzgerald 11, Miller 2, Edwards 2.
HENRY CLAY (12-11) — J.Tisdale 14, Barnes 13, I.Tisdale 10, Setzer 6, Ridgeway 3, Campbell 3, Wilson 8, Houston 2, McCorvey 1.
Southwestern 15 222 14 16—67
Henry Clay 20 9 11 20—60