The Herald Bulletin

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Local Sports

January 25, 2014

Blackmon, Giants overwhelm Tribe

ANDERSON — There was an old-school feel Friday night at the Tepee.

Nearly 2,000 fans filled the gym at Anderson High School, bringing the arena close to its capacity. On the court were a pair of the oldest and most bitter rivals in the North Central Conference.

And the game bore the scars of that history, with Anderson and Marion combining for 47 fouls and 61 free-throw attempts.

In the end, a familiar name stole the show.

Following in the footsteps of his father's all-star career, James Blackmon Jr. poured in a game-high 42 points and the visiting Giants ran away with a 93-74 victory.

James Blackmon Sr., now the head coach at his alma mater, scored a combined 102 points in his final two games against the Indians — including a Final Four loss — and was glad to see the family tradition continue.

"That's one of the stats I can still hold over his head," the elder Blackmon said, referencing his superior scoring prowess against the Tribe. "Because he's pretty much crushed all my other stats."

Blackmon Jr. scored 28 points in the second half, including a dunk in the final 30 seconds, and played all 32 minutes. But two of the IU-bound Mr. Basketball candidate's lesser known teammates played a critical role in the decision.

Jordan Smith came off the bench to score 10 of his 11 points in the second quarter, and Alec Turner tallied 11 of his 19 points in the third period. Not coincidentally, the Giants (9-3, 3-0 NCC) took control of the game during those two quarters.

Anderson (6-7, 1-2) led 17-12 early in the second quarter before Smith helped ignite a 9-0 run that put Marion ahead for good. The Indians fought back within 26-24 midway through the period before the Giants put together a 12-2 run to end the half.

Turner knocked down a 3-pointer to end the run, foreshadowing his third-quarter heroics.

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