FORT WAYNE – Despite blowing most of an 18-point lead, New Haven still ended a three-game losing streak with a 58-54 win over Huntington North in the Super Hoops Classic on Tuesday at Memorial Coliseum.
New Haven (4-3) built a 46-28 third-quarter advantage before Huntington North (7-5) started to whittle away at the deficit.
After losing three in a row, any way you can get (a win) is good, said New Haven senior V.J. Beachem, a Notre Dame recruit. It was a good feeling to get a win, especially in the Coliseum because I have always wanted to play here.
I am proud of the team to get the win. Hopefully we can get back on a winning run. We played pretty well, and I am glad we bounced back.
The Bulldogs had lost to Northrop, Hammond Noll and South Bend Adams before halting the short skid against the Vikings.
Beachem led the Bulldogs with 16 points and 10 rebounds, while Jordan Hogue had 13 points and Jabar Ray 12.
The Vikings got within 58-54 with 12 seconds left, but time ran out on the rally.
We made a run to spread the game open, but then they made a run, said Beachem, who scored only one point in the fourth. They came back hard in those last minutes.
In the fourth quarter, we came out a little sluggish, and then we started to play our game. We were able to pull it out. We really had to gut that one out.
Huntington North got 22 points from Noah Reed, 19 from Kalvin Miller and 13 from Kyle Platt. Only those three players scored for the Vikings.
Reed had 13 points in the second half, while Platt scored 11 points in the fourth.
The Vikings, who have won 3 of 5, have two more wins this year than they had all of last season.
We can’t dig that deep of a hole, said coach Rob Irwin, the former Whitko and Carroll coach who’s in his first season at Huntington North. We got aggressive and took the ball to the rim and finally got some stops, but we can’t dig that deep of a hole and expect to win.
I am glad we clawed our way back in, but I think we can play better. We are getting harder to play against, so that’s all you can ask for.
New Haven found the shooting background to its liking by making 19 of 32 (59 percent) from the field.
Huntington North got only 10 of 30 (33 percent) to fall, including 8 of 25 (32 percent) of its three-pointers.
Steve McElvene added eight points and seven rebounds for the Bulldogs, who won the rebound battle 39-30.
We didn’t shoot the ball as well as we normally do, but that’s going to happen in the Coliseum, Irwin said.
New Haven made 14 of 21 (66 percent) from the field in the first half to help lead 31-22 at the break. Huntington North outscored New Haven 32-27 in the second half.
We didn’t defend in the first half, and once we did defend we couldn’t get them off the boards, Irwin said.
The Vikings made 9 of 27 from the field in the first half.
Miller had 13 points for Huntington North, including two four-point plays – a free throw after being fouled after making a three-pointer.