By Zach Adams
INGOMAR – Kelton Hall’s game-high 20 points helped lead Ingomar to a 72-52 victory over Tremont in the first round of the 1A North Tournament on Tuesday night, but none of the eighth grader’s buckets were more critical than the three consecutive 3-pointers he hit early in the first quarter.
The clutch shots gave the Falcons a quick lead, one that they never gave up.
Seniors Matt Hale and Sam Cobb followed Hall with 14 and 11 points respectively, while junior Laquain Foster also notched 11 as the Falcons were able to move the ball around and control the pace of the game. Although Tremont bigs Cody North and Daniel Sturdivant had superior size, the pressing Ingomar defense was able to cause turnovers and block out well inside.
“As skilled as (Tremont’s) two big guys are, we knew that we needed to get the ball up and down (the court) and I thought we did a good job of that in the first quarter,” Ingomar coach Jonathan Ashley said. “We used that momentum, jumped out there to start with and from that point on it was basically a five or six-point game.”
Ingomar (24-10) secured a quick 8-point lead behind Hall’s 3s in the first period. Hale then scored inside to quickly push the deficit to 12. Walker Adams, who led Tremont (21-11) with 15 points, was able to knock down several baskets. North also did damage inside, but every time the Eagles looked to pull within 10 points, Ingomar would answer with a big shot.
The Falcons led 39-26 at the break and continued to inch away in the second half, taking advantage of turnovers and fast breaks to extend their lead and eventually take the 20-point victory.
North scored 11 points for the Eagles, while Sturdivant added 10.
From here on out, the Falcons insist they are not looking too far ahead.
“We have five seniors who knew going out there tonight that they were playing for 32 more minutes,” Ashley said. “Thursday we are going to try to get them 32 more.”