IMS boys defeat Fairfield in overtime thriller
The Iowa Mennonite School’s boys’ varsity basketball team hosted the Fairfield Trojans on Saturday, Feb. 1 and treated the crowd to an overtime thriller that IMS eventually won 46 - 44.
Fairfield stormed out of the gate to a 12 – 5 lead and forced IMS to take a timeout to try to stop the Trojan’s momentum with 2:37 left in the first quarter. Thanks to three 3-pointers by Fairfield sophomore Jordan Reid and strong interior play by senior Vincent Horras the Trojans led 17 – 7 at the end of the first quarter.
“They [Fairfield] played very well defensively and we did a better job of getting our offense organized in the second quarter. We had to run some very specific things and we got better as the night went on,” IMS head coach Dwight Gingerich said.
IMS went on a 10 – 2 run to start the second quarter to cut the Fairfield lead to just two points. Dallas Nye then hit a pair of free-throws to tie the game at 19 with 4:21 left in the first half. The Trojans’ Alex Crile made a traditional play to take the lead back for Fairfield. The Trojans built upon that to take a 28 – 24 lead into halftime.
“Our defense has really gotten better. We did a much better job tonight of identifying shooters and coming out under control to apply pressure,” Fairfield head coach Tyler Miklo commented.
IMS answered in the third quarter with a 6 – 1 run to take a 30 – 29 lead with 5:21 remaining. Two more lead changes and a tie would create a 33 – 31 Fairfield advantage through 24 minutes of play.
A three-point play by IMS’ Reggie Hostetler tied the game at 37 with 1:39 left to play in regulation. Reid hit a pair of free-throws to give the Trojans a 39 – 37 lead with 1:21 on the clock. Nye matched Reid with two free-throws to re-tie the game at 39.
A timely offensive rebound and put-back shot gave Fairfield a 41 – 39 lead on the next possession and IMS started to give fouls with less than 20 seconds remaining.
Reid would again go to the line with 18 seconds left to try to ice the game for the Trojans. Reid hit the first shot but missed the second and IMS got a defensive rebound. With five seconds remaining on the game clock IMS had the ball down 42 – 39. IMS was able to inbound the ball and work the ball around to Eli Gingerich who sank the 3-point attempt just before the buzzer to send the game into overtime.
“We did a good job on the inbound; they didn’t get an open look. We just had a mental breakdown and we turned our heads to look where the ball was instead of just continuing to guard. Give credit to Eli, he made a deep shot,” Miklo added.
“The presence of mind of Kirby Shetler to find the open shooter at the end of regulation was fantastic,” D. Gingerich said.
Nye scored a bucket with 3:13 left in the extra period to break the tie and Fairfield was unable to get going offensively in overtime.
As a team Fairfield shot 34 percent (16/47) from the field, 3/15 from 3-point range and 9/11 from the free-throw line. The Trojans grabbed 31 rebounds and four steals. Fairfield also blocked a shot and had 13 assists.
IMS shot 39 percent (15/38) from the field, 5/15 from 3-point range and 11/22 from the free-throw line. IMS grabbed 25 rebounds.
Reid led the Trojans with 15 points. Senior Joe Hietpas had seven rebounds to lead Fairfield. Horras led the Trojans with three assists and four Fairfield players (senior Matt Carr, Hietpas, junior Federico Ferretti and Horras) each had one steal. Horras was responsible for the lone Trojan blocked shot. Nye led IMS with 17 points and nine rebounds.
IMS is now 14 – 3 overall, 13 -2 in SEISC play and plays at Winfield – Mt. Union on Tuesday, Feb. 4. Fairfield is 8 – 8 overall and 3 – 3 in the SISC. The Trojans take the court at home against Keokuk on Friday, Feb. 7.