Red Devils net Jayhawk East win

Register Sports Editor

Register/Jocelyn Sheets
Allen County Community College’s Gavin Cole (14) is surrounded by four Fort Scott Community College Greyhound players on this drive to the basket. Cole connected on the shot and the Red Devils fired past visiting Greyhounds 84-68 here Wednesday.

Allen County Community College Red Devils adapted and won, 84-68, at home in Jayhawk Eastern Division play Wednesday night.
Visiting Fort Scott Community College’s Greyhounds presented a different lineup than expected by ACCC head coach Mike Hayes. The Red Devil coach wanted his team to play man-to-man defense but his players surprised him.
Oh, yeah, the Red Devils were without starting point guard Anthony Clagett.
No problem. The Red Devils shot a sizzling 67 percent from the field and 65 percent from the free-throw line. Allen County shot better than 80 percent from the field in the first half, building a 43-26 halftime lead.
“Fort Scott went with a bigger lineup than we expected and I didn’t change mine but I could have,” Hayes said.
“We’ve been working on a new defense. It’s a match-up zone that I used several years ago. But tonight, I wanted the guys in man.
“After we scored the opening basket, they (the Red Devil players) jumped right into the match-up zone. I didn’t call a timeout and yell at them. They really did a good job, rotating and helping in it.”
With Clagett, a sophomore, on the bench with a severe ankle sprain, the point-guard duties fell to sophomore Aaron Jackson. Jackson ripped the nets for 16 points and handed out three assists.
“Aaron was a little anxious at first but he took the challenge and managed the game very well. It’s how I expected him to play,” Hayes said.
Allen County took the tip and went right to the basket as Keevis Tukes scored. Tukes also helped with point guard duties. But he also led the Red Devil barrage of three-pointers by hitting four of the team’s 11 treys on the night.
Dennis Rumph put ACCC up 5-0 with the first three of the night. Fort Scott’s Jacob Gougler countered with a three.
The Greyhounds were held at bay most of the first half. They scored just 26 points. Allen County never trailed in the contest.
It was 10-9 when Andra Bailey, who had 14 points and nine rebounds, got his first basket of the night on the inside. He then added two free throws.
Gavin Cole fired in a trey to put Allen County up 17-9 with 11:21 left in the first half. Chris Lee came off the bench and nailed a three.
Jackson hit from long range to start a triple affect. Fort Scott’s Alex Barner, who hit four threes, downed one then Bailey stepped out and hit from beyond the arc for ACCC.
Jackson broke the run of threes with a fastbreak bucket. A field goal by Greg Hayes with 15 seconds remaining put the Red Devils in control of a 43-26 lead at intermission.
“Fort Scott plays zone and early we didn’t move the ball as well as I wanted. But from the 15-minute mark to about the five-minute mark, we really played unselfish basketball,” Hayes said.
“Then Fort Scott went to a man-to-man. Our guys adjusted.”
The rain of threes continued as the second half opened with four straight treys — three for Allen County. The Red Devils led 54-29.
Fort Scott made a run with a 9-2 surge but Hayes hit two free throws for ACCC. Cole’s basket with 13:22 left made it 60-40.
“Gavin played his best all around game in his two years here. He pulled up and shot a three and he drove to the basket. He played very good defense,” Hayes said.
At the midway mark of the second half, Allen County’s lead was 64-47. The Red Devils had an answer each time the Greyhounds made a run.
The Red Devils went 15 of 23 from the free-throw line for the game. Overall, Allen County was 29 of 43 from the field, including 11 of 18 on threes.
Tukes finished with 20 points. Cole had 12 and Lee tossed in 11 points.
Fort Scott shot 61 percent, 28 of 46, from the field. The Hounds were 4 of 9 at the line.
Ramell Taylor led the way with 17 points. Barner and Gougler each had 16 points.
Former Crest High standout Travis Buck had four points for Fort Scott.
“This was a big game for us. It was our first home conference game and after losing two at the Shoot-Out over the weekend, it was good to get a win,” Hayes said.
“Every player contributed tonight.”
Erik Law, a 6-5 freshman, was sidelined because of an academic situation. Hayes said it involves an intersession class taken by Law and how the NJCAA rules apply to it.
Allen County improved to 2-1 in Jayhawk East play and 7-7 overall. Next up for the Red Devils is a home game with Highland (1-4, 6-10) Saturday. Tipoff is 8 p.m.
Allen County (43-41—84) (FG/3-pt): Jackson 2/3-3-1-16, Rumph 0/1-2-1-5, Tukes 4/4-0-2-20, Cole 4/1-1-2-12, Hayes 1-4-1-6, Bailey 3/1-5-2-14, Lee 4/1-0-3-11. TOTALS: 18/11-15-12-84.
Fort Scott (26-42—68) (FG/-3-pt): Mason 1-1-3-3, Hatcher 1-1-2-3, Brown 0-1-2-1, Taylor 7/1-0-1-17, Barner 2/4-0-1-16, McCoy 4-0-3-8, Buck 2-0-2-4, Gougler 3/3-1-1-16. TOTALS: 20/8-4-15-68.