FRANKFORT — North Montgomery’s boys took Frankfort to the wire but came up one basket short in a 50-48 Sagamore Conference loss Thursday.
The Chargers, who led at the half and at the end of three quarters by a point, took the Hot Dogs literally to the last shot of the game, but a three-pointer came up just short at a very warm Case Arena.
“We executed well, the kids battled the entire night, we got the shots we wanted,” Chargers coach Joel Grindle said. “In the end, it was a talented team making one more play than us.”
North, who falls to 3-14 for the season and 1-5 in the Sagamore, controlled the tempo the entire contest, taking away both the Hot Dogs potent transition game and making their inside baskets hard to get.
“We knew we had to be precise on offense,” Grindle said, “and we knew we had to execute on both ends of the floor. With a team that is a ranked team, was last year’s Regional runners-up and not only returned everyone but got some more talent, you better get it right, and we battled that good team all night.”
For most of the three quarters, the Chargers were more like the Richmond Spiders, running a back-door offense that Frankfort could not stop.
Layup after layup was the result of a handful of passes around the perimeter, with a screen and a cut, followed by a bounce pass, ending up with a Charger at the rim.
“We really screened well,” Grindle continued, “and we moved the ball well. They took away our back door plays late when they started pressuring the guards nearly at half-court.”
North got a 29-point night from Nathan Rogers, who got a few of those bounce passes, but also dished out five dimes on his own. The senior was also second-best with five rebounds.
Grant Gaylor added 10 points as the Chargers were 18-of-41 from the floor but only 1-of-9 from three-point range. They were 11-of-13 from the stripe.
The Hot Dogs, who move to 14-4 on the season and 5-1 in the conference, were led in scoring by Dakota Isgrigg, the 6-7 senior center, who had 15 points.
“Isgrigg is one of the top players in the conference, Grindle said, “and one of the top bigs in the state. We had to keep the ball out of the middle or it would have been a long and bad night.”
Isgrigg was limited to six shots, but hit five, and the big guy had only three rebounds.
Christian Smith was also in double-figures for Frankfort with a dozen points. The Hot Dogs were 20-of-46 from the floor, 2-of-9 from long range and 8-of-17 from the line. They won the rebound battle 33-27. Smith finished his double-double with 10 rebounds.
“We were in a position to get the last shot,” Grindle said. “We executed the game plan all night, right down to the last play. We got the shot we wanted - it just didn’t go down. They made one more play than us tonight, but we never lacked effort.”
The Hot Dogs are idle until next Friday when they travel to Tipton. They have Southmont remaining on the schedule as well.
The Chargers are back in action next Friday also, playing host to Tri-West.
Frankfort won the JV game 41-30.
Luis Medina and Jarrod Smith each had 10 for Frankfort. Elijah Dugard led the Chargers with 10 points.