Freshman Brady Stump started and made the most of it by putting up 18 points in the Indians’ 58-37 Big 7 Conference victory over Daniel Boone.
Sophomores Malachi Hale and Jack Browder also contributed to the win, scoring eight and seven points, respectively.
“We have a lot of talented young guys that have put in the work and we’ve put them in that position because they’ve earned it,” D-B coach Chris Poore said. “It’s fun to see the young kids succeed. It’s fun to see any kid succeed, but when it’s the young kids, it seems like the whole team gets behind them and energizes everybody.”
Up by 11 points entering the fourth quarter, the Tribe (9-6, 4-0) exploded for 25 in the final period to keep its league record unblemished.
“Brady is a competitor,” said Poore, who had seven players make the scoring column. “Early in the season, he struggled to get on the floor. Throughout the Arby’s Classic, though, we started to see some growth and understanding. He had an opportunity and when you give that kid a sliver of opportunity, he’ll take it and run with it.”
Offensively, Boone (9-6, 2-3) was stagnant most of the night and had no one score in double figures. Jared Atkins and Cade Norris finished with seven each.
“Our defense was the best it’s been this season tonight, I thought,” Poore added. “We did a good job of keeping them out of the paint. Boone runs a lot of misdirection stuff and it’s hard to defend. I thought we did a really good job the whole night.”
The Indians face a tough task Saturday when they cross the state line to visit Gate City. The Blue Devils already thwarted the Tribe once this season inside the Dome, 42-40 on Dec. 12.
“We need to approach this game like preparing for the postseason,” Poore said. “It’s back-to-back nights and in a very tough environment. The team we’re playing is also very quality and gritty. For us to go in that place and get a win, it will take a tremendous effort.”
POTTS KEY TO LADY INDIANS’ WIN
Jaden Potts grabbed a huge offensive rebound with 33.5 seconds left and went 3-for-6 at the foul line to help Dobyns-Bennett’s girls pull out the 40-39 win and stay unbeaten inside the Big 7.
“That rebound was huge for someone that’s one of the smaller players on the floor,” Tribe coach Bill Francis said. “That’s what Potts does. She’s a hustler and will run through a brick wall for her team. She was coming off of the stomach bug and struggled to score tonight — and anyone watching could tell.”
The Lady Trailblazers (8-8, 3-2) threw everything at D-B (15-4, 4-0) and didn’t go down without a fight. Jaycie Jenkins nailed a 3-pointer with under 15 seconds left that pulled them within one.
After D-B missed two free throws, Boone had possession with time winding down but threw the ball into the corner and couldn’t get off a shot.
Jenkins was a one-woman wrecking crew, scoring a game-high 27 points that included six 3-pointers.
“Jaycie Jenkins is one of the best players in the league and one of the best players I’ve seen around here in a while,” Francis said. “I love her game. We guarded her pretty hard and she hit some really tough shots. That one she made at the end was way out there and we had the set defended. She just made the shot.”
Elle Francis countered for the Tribe with 14 points and four 3-pointers.
“Elle really lifted us early and kept us in it to begin with when we weren’t hitting shots from the inside,” Coach Francis said. “That helped loosen up our inside game.
“We had to dig deep into our bag of tricks tonight. We manufactured some points tonight because it wasn’t flowing on offense like it normally does.”