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Gifford Update

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Chiefs' defense leads to victory


Rock Bridge was held from scoring for most of the fourth quarter.


Allen Vaughan



Sure, making a big steal is exhilarating and blocking a shot is chest-thumping material. But as Kickapoo showed Saturday night, getting a hand in the face of a shooter and blocking out can be just as fun — championship fun. Kickapoo held Columbia Rock Bridge without a point until the 1:38 mark of the fourth quarter and survived a late flurry of points to beat the Bruins 51-49 in the final of the Kickapoo Tip-Off Classic.

"I was just trying to guard (Alex Austin) and stay with him. Just containing and making the shot harder for (them)," said Kyle Vaughan, a Kickapoo sophomore.




Kickapoo senior Kyle Kirk led the Chiefs with 17 points and seven rebounds. Sophomore Dusty Allen had 16.


Vaughan set the tone early on defense, tailing Austin, Rock Bridge's leading scorer. Austin had 19 points, but was only 6-of-16 from the floor — 5-of-13 from 3-point range.


"They created a lot of matchup problems for us. We just had to play good team defense and we helped out each other quite a bit," said Kickapoo coach Roy Green.


The Chiefs held Rock Bridge to 39.1 percent shooting on the night, holding the Bruins' 6-foot-10 center Brett Gifford to seven points on 3-of-7 shooting.


Alex Bernskeotter only had two points, but kept Gifford off the scoreboard until getting in foul trouble. Then Kyle Kirk switched onto him.


"He's a big boy. I just wanted to keep him away from the basket," said Kirk, who also had seven rebounds.


Kickapoo's largest lead was six at 30-24, the halftime score.


Allen had 10 of his 16 in the second quarter.

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