GREENFIELD, Ind. - James Blackmon Jr. drilled a huge 3-point shot in overtime Friday night (June 7), leading the IndyStar.com Indiana Junior All-Stars boys to a 108-102 victory over Kentucky in the first round basketball home-and-home doubleheaders at Greenfield-Central High School.
Blackmon, a 6-2 guard who will play at Marion as a senior, poured in a game-high 27 points and Trevon Bluiett of Park Tudor chipped in 17 points as Indiana moved to 2-1 in the second year of the Junior series against Kentucky.
Earlier, Whitney Jennings of Logansport scored 23 points and Kellie Kirkhoff of Roncalli added 17 as the Indiana girls defeated Kentucky 79-67 to move to 3-0 in their series against the Bluegrass girls.
The Indiana Junior All-Stars will square off in another doubleheader against Kentucky on Saturday (June 8) at St. Xavier High School in Louisville. The girls' game begins at 5 p.m., and the boys' game will follow.
In the boys game Friday, Indiana rallied from a 71-60 deficit with just more than 10 minutes to go in regulation to pull out the decision in the game played in two 20-minute halves with a five-minute overtime.
Blackmon sank two free throws, Bluiett a fast-break layup and Blackmon hit a 3-pointer to get the Hoosiers back into the game, and Indiana finally took an 82-81 lead on a dunk by Fort Wayne Concordia's D.J. McCall off a steal and assist from Plymouth's Mack Mercer.
The teams went back and forth through the remainder of regulation before two Mercer free throws and 1-of-2 free throws by Tech's Trey Lyles gave the Hoosiers a 90-87 edge with 20.5 seconds to go in regulation. But Kelan Martin of Louisville Ballard countered with a 3-pointer from the right side with 7.8 seconds showing to tie the game at 90. Then a contested, long Blackmon 3-point attempt would not fall at the regulation buzzer.
Mercer began the extra period with a 3-pointer from the left wing, and Bluiett followed with a 10-footer from the left baseline after an offensive rebound. Kentucky's Martin responded with a 3-pointer and Indiana led by three when Blackmon buried a 3-point dagger for a 102-96 advantage with 1:26 to go.
Bluiett followed with a driving reverse layin with 47 seconds to go, then Frankton's Aaron Korn and Blackmon added layups over the final 35 seconds to seal the result.
Korn finished with 12 points, Greensburg's Bryant McIntosh chipped in 10 points and Mercer and McCall each contributed nine points to the Indiana effort.
Cris Cunningham of Lexington Henry Clay scored 20 points, Perry County Central's Justin Johnson tallied 18 points and Martin had 16 points to pace Kentucky. Trey Grundy of Lexington Henry Clay also reached double figures with 10 points.
In the girls' game, Kirkhoff and Jennings keyed an Indiana burst in the final moments of the first half as the Hoosiers seized control and never relinquished it.
Kirkhoff gave Indiana a lead at 38-36 on a fast-break layup off a feed from Fort Wayne Concordia's Courtney Smith with 1:17 to go, then Kirkhoff added a four-point play (made 3-pointer and free throw) off an assist from Columbus North's Tayler Goodall with 49.2 seconds left in the period. Jennings followed with a deep 3-pointer with about 10 seconds to go. Jennings then added a steal, was fouled and sank two free throws with 2.9 seconds left for a 10-point margin at intermission.
Kentucky made a brief comeback early in the second half, but Indiana responded with a burst capped by a 3-pointer by Warsaw's Nikki Grose for a 62-47 edge. The Bluegrass girls rallied one last time to cut its deficit to 66-56, but Jennings and Evansville Mater Dei's Maura Muensterman countered with consecutive layups and the outcome never was in doubt from there.
Muensterman and Grose each netted eight points, while Smith chipped in six points and Goodall contributed nine rebounds, five assists and three steals to go along with two points.
Eriel McKee of Anderson County scored 14 points and Ivy Brown of LaRue tallied 10 points to pace Kentucky.
Next week, the Indiana Junior All-Stars will play the Indiana Senior All-Stars in a pair of girl-boy doubleheaders -- at 6 p.m. Monday at Sullivan High School and at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Tipton High School.
The Indiana Senior All-Stars will face Kentucky in another set of doubleheaders -- at 5:30 p.m. June 14 at Freedom Hall in Louisville and at 5 p.m. June 15 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
KENTUCKY GIRLS (67) -- Abby Owings 1 2-2 4, Ivy Brown 3 3-4 10, Eriel McKee 6 1-2 14, Danielle Lawrence 3 1-2 7, Shalika Smith 4 0-0 8, Jamie Castle 0 1-2 1, Sarah Cooley 2 0-2 4, Sarah Futscher 1 2-2 5, Nicole Kiernan 1 0-0 2, Rachel Potter 2 2-2 7, Taylor Wheeler 1 3-6 5, Makenzie Cann 0 0-2 0. Totals: 24 15-26 67.
INDIANA GIRLS (79) -- Tayler Goodall 0 2-4 2, Erica Moore 1 0-1 2, Sydney Buck 2 0-0 5, Whitney Jennings 9 3-3 23, Maura Muensterman 3 2-2 8, Kindell Fincher 1 1-2 3, Nikki Grose 3 1-4 8, Morgan Olson 1
0-0 2, Jaclyn Heath 0 2-2 2, Kellie Kirkhoff 6 3-3 17, Kayla Brown 0 1-2 1, Courtney Smith 2 2-2 6. Totals: 28 17-25 79.
Halftime score: Indiana 47, Kentucky 37
Three-point goals: Kentucky 4 (Brown 1, McKee 1, Futscher 1, Potter 1), Indiana 6 (Jennings 2, Kirkhoff 2, Buck 1, Grose 1).
Total fouls: Kentucky 17, Indiana 16.
Fouled out: None.
Technical fouls: None.
KENTUCKY BOYS (102) -- Brent Bach 2 0-0 4, Cris Cunningham 8 4-5 20, Jackson Davis 5 2-2 12, Jordan Green 3 0-1 7, Trey Grundy 4 1-2 10, Darion Burns 3 2-2 8, Trent Gilbert 2 0-0 5, Hunter Skelton 1 0-0 2, Justin Johnson 8 2-4 18, Kelan Martin 6 2-3 16. Totals: 42 13-19 102.
INDIANA BOYS (108) -- James Blackmon Jr. 9 7-8 27, JaQuan Lyle 0 0-0 0, Trey Lyles 1- 4-6 6, Tayler Persons 2 2-2 6, Mack Mercer 3 2-3 9, Bryant McIntosh 5 0-0 10, C.J. Coleman 1 0-0 3, D.J. McCall 2 5-6 9, Trevon Bluiett 8 0-1 17, Aaron Korn 5 0-1 12, Grant Evans 1 0-0 3, Tyler Wideman 2 2-6 6. Totals: 39 22-33 108.
Halftime score: Kentucky 45, Indiana 39.
End of regulation: Indiana 90, Kentucky 90.
Three-point goals: Kentucky 5 (Martin 2, Green 1, Grundy 1, Gilbert 1), Indiana 8 (Blackmon 2, Korn 2, Coleman 1, Bluiett 1, Evans 1, Mercer 1).
Total fouls: Kentucky 21, Indiana 14.
Fouled out: Davis, Mercer.
Technical fouls: None.
The organization claims such legislation would hamper the city's ability to grow economically and that Fort Wayne should be "competitive on a national level and be recognized as a community that thrives on diversity, innovation, and inclusion,”
A state commission seeking ways to improve the lives of Indiana's most vulnerable children is forming a task force to investigate whether there's a link between methamphetamine arrests and child welfare cases.
Scammers are claiming to be from a law enforcement agency and are threatening to arrest victims if they don't pay the fine for an alleged crime or debt.
The free course will go over the laws and regulations about squirrel hunting and will teach attendees how to field dress and prepare squirrels for the table.
The Allen County Sheriff's Department arrested two people for having and making meth on Monday and Wednesday.
People across Indiana are bundling up against colder temperatures than parts of the state saw in either of the past two winters.
Tesla has opened two charging stations in northern Indiana, one of them at a hotel in Angola, as it works to establish a network of such stops across the country for its electric cars.
Fort Wayne police are looking for a man who is suspected of robbing a local bar early Thursday morning.
Volunteer fire departments are monitoring what the Affordable Care Act could mean to them. Departments nationwide, and locally, are afraid they won't have the funds to pay for health benefits if they're required to due to the new health law.
The property manager at a Geneva apartment complex says a bed bug infestation has been all cleaned up, while some timid tenants and an outspoken protestor beg to differ.
The Hoosier Park horse track is looking to pull in more gamblers to its Fort Wayne off-track betting parlor. Leaders are strongly looking at New Haven for its new location.
Fourth and sixth graders at Leo Elementary School were given a survey intended to improve student life. Parents were not notified of the survey ahead of time, and said some questions were an invasion of privacy and home life.
The deaf community in South Africa says an interpreter for Nelson Mandela's memorial was a fake. A revelation that has caused an uproar worldwide.
Police arrested a man after he apparently sent threatening letters to a woman and to himself to throw police off track. Officials said he also set his own truck on fire.
The program provides free cab rides home to impaired drivers during the holiday season until January 1.