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February 9, 2014

ROUNDUP: Harrison defeats Jeff despite 25 from Ellis

CAI runs over Musketeers, 85-69

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — Jeffersonville came up short of stealing a victory from host Evansville Harrison on Saturday, 78-64.

Jeff led 34-28 at the half and looked to be in good position to pull out the upset. Senior Drew Ellis was unguardable in the first half, leading the Red Devil charge with 22 points going into the break.

“We were proud of our guys’ effort tonight,” Red Devil coach Matt Pait said. “If we play with the effort we did tonight, we could win the sectional.”

With 1:20 left in the second quarter, Harrison made a defensive change, switching to a triangle-and-2 formation to shadow the sizzling Ellis.

With the added pressure on Ellis, the Warriors were able to slow down the Jeff offense and began to cut into the lead. Despite scoring just 12 third-quarter points, Jeff still carried a slim lead late in the third quarter, but saw the lead vanish as Harrison knocked down a 3 as time expired.

The Warriors led 47-46 heading into the final quarter.

Entering the fourth, Harrison had momentum on their side and sustained it when it scored two quick buckets to start the quarter, both coming from offensive rebound putbacks.

“We are a team that you never know what team will show up,” Pait said. “They played great, we played good — and we didn’t get it done at the end.”

During an eight-minute stretch that spanned the third and fourth quarters, the Red Devils allowed the Warriors to score 15 points off their offensive glass.

The Warriors went 12 for 12 from the charity stripe and outscored the Devils 31-18 in the fourth quarter to pull away for their fifth straight victory .

“They played a great fourth quarter,” Pait said. “It’s hard to come back when they don’t miss free throws and take care of the ball.”

Ellis finished with 25 points by going 9 of 15 from the field. Keenan Williams scored 19 and Chad Hudson had 12 in the loss. Ernie Duncan led the Warriors with 20 points. Brothers Stanley Duncan and Everett Duncan each scored 18. Everett also had 14 rebounds in the win.

Both teams shot the ball well. Jeff finished with 26 makes on 48 attempts. Harrison was 25 of 49, and only missed one free throw the entire game (17 of 18).

The 8-8 Red Devils will be back in action on Thursday when they travel to Jennings County to take on the 9-7 Panthers.

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