Floyd Central continued its winning ways with a 65-59 win Saturday night over visiting Madison.
Floyd Central’s first-year coach Todd Sturgeon said his team started to figure things out after the New Albany loss.
“(Plus) we started to get healthy and get some guys back from injury and illness,” Sturgeon said. “And, we started to get some practice time in.”
Against Madison, the Highlanders (9-3, 2-2 Hoosier Hills) scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter and pulled away from a 40-all tie.
J.C. Kinnaird and Clayton Crum converted layups to start the fourth-quarter surge, and then Myles Ervin hit a 3-pointer and converted a Madison turnover into a layup, giving the Highlanders a 49-40 lead with 5:40 left.
From there, the Cubs (8-4, 2-4) never got closer than four points.
Ervin led the Highlanders with 20 points. Kinnaird, who hit 6 of 7 free throws in the final 34 seconds, added 19 points.
“I thought we made it really difficult for them during that stretch in the fourth quarter, and we got some stops,” Sturgeon said. “They were going on-and-out on several possessions in a row.”
The game went back-and-forth until the fourth quarter.
“I was really happy with our composure when we got behind,” Sturgeon said.
The Highlanders got a big lift from reserve Bryce Hudson, a 6-foot-4 swingman who is coming back from a knee injury. He came off the bench and added 12 points.
“He brings athleticism and energy off the bench,” Sturgeon said. “If he keeps playing like that it will be hard to bring him off the bench.”
That’s good news for Hudson.
“I’d much rather start,” said Hudson, who said he’s about 80 percent physically right now. “I’m just easing my way through. I’m feeling better and I feel stronger.”
“We’re just now seeing what he really can do,” Sturgeon said of Hudson. “He’s just scraping the surface.”
Nick Macon, a sharpshooting point guard, led the Cubs with 23 points while hitting six 3-pointers.
“It’s hard when the other team has a player who can shoot like Macon,” Sturgeon said, “and they have some other shooters too. … I thought we did a fantastic job of defending.”
Kyle Tucker and Quenton White added 13 points apiece for Madison.
Madison (8-4) – Tucker 13, Stewart 1, White 13, Macon 23, Weaver 4, Dryden 5.
Floyd Central (9-3) – Ervin 20, Kinnaird 19, Kimm 6, Crum 2, Sturgeon 6, Hudson 12.
3-point goals – Tucker 3, White 1, Macon 6, Ervin 3.