BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
FORT MADISON – Whether it’s senior Treavor James-Kokjohn hitting setshot 3-balls, Brandon Keester pulling a cross-over that left his defender on the floor and then stroking a 22-footer, or Kaleb Cresswell hitting from everywhere except the bleachers…the Hounds found themselves on the winning side again Friday night.
James-Kokjohn had 29 and Cresswell fired in 21 including five from 3-point land to help the Hounds to a 87-49 coaster over Washington. The win snaps the Hounds out of funk of sorts dropping two of three games last week to No. 2 ranked Mt. Pleasant and Central Lee, a top 15 Class 2A team. The Hounds will face No. 5 Class 4A Pleasant Valley on Saturday. They knocked Missouri’s Class 2 No. 4 Clark County to start last week.
The game opened with a flurry of 3-balls on both sides with the Demons’ Jacob Van Osdol and Blake Hartzler each hitting for Washington and the Hounds Kaleb Cresswell and Logan Rashid all alternating long shots before either team would miss. The two teams traded buckets for most of the first period with James-Kokjohn putting up seven for Fort Madison, including a 3-pointer of his own to give Fort Madison a 15-14 lead with :30 remaining in the quarter. But the Demons’ Cale Hobscheidt scored on a runner in the middle of the lane to end the period with Washington on top 16-15.
That would be the last time the Demons would hold a lead in the game. The Hounds junior Brandon Keester hit from about 23 feet out to start the 2nd and give the Hounds some momentum as the crowd digs the long ball. The shot would set Fort Madison on a 16-0 tear where five different Bloodhounds would score highlighted by Cresswell’s seven points. Washington wouldn’t score again until Cade Hennigan would make the back end of two free throws off a Parker Denning foul, when Fort Madison shifted into a full court press.
The Hounds had pulled out to a 31-17 advantage at that point and James-Kokjohn countered with a move inside. Keester converted on the next possession after Fort Madison’s defense held. After Washington’s Hennigan hit another free throw, Cresswell threw in another three to push Fort Madison to a 38-20 advantage. Washington would get their only field goal of the second quarter when Dalton Myers would hit to cut the lead to 40-22. The Demons did convert 4-of-4 from the free throw line in the final 1:35 and trailed 44-26 at the half.
The Demons outscored the Hounds 15-13 in the third period, but Parker Denning’s 3-ball and a score inside by James-Kokjohn in the final seconds of the third had Fort Madison out comfortably 59-41 going into the final period. With about three minutes left in the quarter, Keester executed a nifty head fake and cross over that left his defender on the floor, stepped back and hit a 22-footer to put the Hounds up 54-32.
Fort Madison then played one of their best periods of the year going perfect from the free throw line, shooting 9 of 13 from the field and held Washington to just eight points down the stretch. James-Kokjohn gave the Hounds their biggest lead with a standing 3-pointer from the top of the key to put Fort Madison up 77-44. Fort Madison would stop the Demons on the next trip and James-Kokjohn fired in another 3 from the same spot on the next trip down.
Logan Rashid finished with 13 for Fort Madison and Keester had 12. Denning had five, AJ Nolting had three, and Sheymouhr Redd-Donald, Lorenzo Riles and Jayden Fedler each had a bucket for the Hounds.
After Pleasant Valley comes calling Saturday, the Hounds take their 12-6 mark to Davis County on Tuesday.