DELPHI — North Montgomery girls basketball set out a goal to bring home the Indiana Kitchen Classic title. After a win over Rossville on Tuesday the Chargers battled the host Oracles in the Championship game. In what a very physical, back and forth contest it was the host Oracles who came out on top with a 42-38 win to deny the Chargers the title.
The Chargers got off to a great start and held an 8-3 lead early, but the Oracles battled back to tie the game at 11 after the opening period. The physical contest saw numerous players including Katie Rice and Lydia Dugard battle foul trouble for the Chargers. Dugard would eventually fouled out while Rice was able to play in spurts in the second half. She (Rice) made 1/2 free throws to give the Chargers a 34-33 lead, but North Montgomery would get outscored 9-4 in the final few minutes of the game as Delphi knocked down free-throws of their own to seal the win.
“We were able to handle their full-court pressure really well and got off to that good start,” Charger coach Ryan Nuppnau said. “I’m very pleased with how we handled that, but Delphi is a very quick and scrappy team. The game was really lost in that first quarter when we let them back in the game.”
Rice led all scorers in the game with 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds in the loss. Madi Welch added seven while Piper Ramey, Hadley Broadwater and Madison Banta all scored four, and Dugard knocked down a free-throw for one point.
Delphi was led in scoring by Jenna Roth’s 14 points. Kaitlyn Miller also scored in double figures with 12.
The Oracles while they are a very guard-heavy team have the capability to play a very physical style of basketball. Nuppnau credited them with how hard they played in the championship win.
“We knew they were a very physical group coming in,” he said. “That’s how they’ve beaten a lot of teams this year. Normally you don’t see that with a team who is as guard-heavy as they are and with a team as young as they are. They definitely have a hunger and a knack for the ball and we had a hard time dealing with that at points tonight.”
While Rice was still able to score her typical amount of points despite battling foul trouble, while she was on the bench, no one was really able to take charge and provide some scoring for the Chargers. That’s an issue that Nuppnau says can be fixed with a simple solution.
“We just have to be able to knock down some perimeter shots,” he said. “When your big girl whose been knocking down some mid-range jumpers and banging down low is out, that’s a tough thing to overcome. That’s something that we’re going to have to work on here. We’ve taken care of our full-court pressure problem, know we have a new problem that needs fixing.”
The Chargers fall to 9-6 on the season with the loss and will have some time off before their next game on Jan. 4 when they host the North Putnam Cougars (8-7).
“Our girls our hungry and they know this was a winnable game and a winnable championship,” Nuppnau said. “They’re beating themselves up big time and that’s good to see. When you have a team who knows they could’ve won it and you can see it in their faces that they did want to win it, I know they are going to come back and get after it because we have another championship (county game with Southmont on Jan. 6) to play for.”
Delphi 42, North Montgomery 38
Score by Quarters
Delphi 11 10 6 15 - 42
North Montgomery 11 6 13 8 - 38
FG-FGA FT-FTA PTS: Evann Royal 0-4 1-4 1, Libbie Smith 2-10 2-2 7, Lacey Pickering 2-6 2-4 6, Kaitlyn Miller 5-7 2-4 12, Lexi Miller 0-4 2-2 2, Jenna Roth 4-13 4-7 14; Totals 13-44 13-22 42.
North Montgomery (9-6)
Madi Welch 2-7 2-6 7, Hadley Broadwater 1-8 2-2 4, Jadelyn Phillips 0-1 0-0 0, Katie Rice 8-11 2-4 18, Lydia Dugard 0-1 1-2 1, Madison Banta 2-3 0-0 4, Piper Ramey 1-3 2-2 4; Totals 14-34 9-16 38.
3-Pt Shooting: Delphi 3-23 (Roth 2, Smith), North Montgomery 1-12 (Welch).
Rebounding: Delphi 20 (K. Miller 8), North Montgomery 33 (Rice 9, Dugard 8, Ramey 7).
Turnovers: Delphi 14,
North Montgomery 23