Madison Central exacted a little revenge on Bullitt East Sunday in the consolation game of the King of the Bluegrass tournament at Fairdale.
Two weeks after the No. 5 ranked Chargers defeated the Indians 72-66 in the Marshall County Hoopfest, Central returned the favor, downing the Chargers 64-58 to claim third place in the prestigious tournament.
Dominique Hawkins continued his great run in the tournament with a game-high 28 points, six rebounds, two assists and five steals.
Quan Taylor added 17 points and four rebounds, while Ken-Jah Bosley had nine, Coty Alexander seven and Daniel Parke three.
After falling behind 21-14 early in the second quarter, the Indians got things going, eventually catching the Chargers and going into the lockerroom tied at 30 at the half.
The Indians took charge in the third quarter to take a six point lead and never let Bullitt East get within less than four points the rest of the way.
“These last two games were definitely our best two games. We played really well. Once we got the lead, we never could get away from them, but we stayed up four to six points the rest of the game,” Central Coach Allen Feldhaus said. “We had a little pay back. Last weekend when we played them we wanted to come back and redeem ourselves.”
The first game between the two came 24-hours after the Indians had played a tough game against regional rival Lafayette, which left little preparation time for the Chargers, who feature 6-foot-11 University of Kentucky signee Derick Willis, and Feldhaus said his team’s defensive effort was less than stellar.
But this time around, the Indians had more time to prepare and it showed, Feldhaus said.
“The first time we played them we were horrible defensively. They scored eight points on their underneath out-of-bounds play. Tonight they didn’t score anything on it,” Feldhaus said. “We got to spend a little more time on a scouting report. I got over here this morning and got to watch the tame and we got to correct a few things and that helped.”
It’s sometimes tough to get teams up to play in consolation games, but Feldhaus said he wasn’t worried with this team, especially considering the opponent.
“You never know in those consolation type games. Everybody would rather be in the championship game, but you’re not so you have to make the best of it. I think it shows a lot about the character of our team in how they came out and played,” Feldhaus said. “But, you’ve got to look at the competition in this tournament. You play the consolation game against the No. 2 team in the state, so it’s a little bit easier to get up for than if you are playing against someone that is not ranked. And they wanted another shot at Bullet East and hopefully we can get another shot at them down the road.”
The tournament was played before packed houses every night, which included a big contingent of Central fans, which Feldhaus said is no surprise to him or the team.
“Every game we played was to a packed house and it was a great tournament type atmosphere in here. We had a great group of fans scattered throughout the crowd and the kids feed off that,” Feldhaus said. “We get good crowds for us every night. But if you can’t get excited about this team, you don’t like high school basketball. We need to enjoy this team as long as we can.”
Central will be back in action Dec. 28-29 in the Chick-Fil-A Basketball Classic in South Charleston, WV against Pinkerton Central High School.