Ledford boys win third straight

Ledford's Brandon Rothrock passes out of a double-team by Central Davidson's Robert Biesecker (right) and John Hanes during their game Wednesday night at Central. (Photo by Donnie Roberts/The Dispatch)

Central Davidson’s boys owned the first one minute and 43 seconds of their game but the rest of the night belonged to Ledford.

Brandon Rothrock led a balanced scoring attack with 15 points as the Panthers came from behind twice to claim a 50-45 win over the Spartans.

It left second-year Ledford coach Jonathan Leonard misty-eyed.

“I’ll tell you, I’m a little emotional right now,” Leonard said. “This team, I’ve never had a team like this. They don’t give up. They fight. They’re a young team. I enjoy every minute of it.”

Dillon Pierce scored 12 points for the Panthers (3-1) while Anthony Hughes had nine.

The Panthers won with a patient, motion offense that relied on screens, backdoor cuts and 3-pointers, stuff that Ledford has run with success at times over the years under coaches like Rick Larrick and Scott Dalton.

“They dictated the whole tempo,” said Central coach Brian Hege. “It’s hard to win a game when you don’t run your offense. We took shots that weren’t even in our offense. Our defenders were supposed to get out on their shooters. But we packed it in and they kicked it out. You’ve got to give them credit for making 3s.”

Chris Pompey, the Spartans’ 6-6 center, had a game-high 25 points, but didn’t get much help outside Will Ramsey’s nine points.

Pierce broke a 33-33 tie when he stripped the ball from Ramsey and drove half the length of the court for a layup with 47 seconds left in the third quarter.

Ledford pushed its margin to eight and withstood a Central charge. The Spartans cut it to 47-45 but were hampered offensively when Pompey fouled out with 1:03 left in the game.

It sure started out well for the Spartans, who led 9-0 less than two minutes into the game. The run was highlighted by Pompey’s two-handed alley-oop dunk off a pick-and-roll.

But the Panthers, aided by a pair of 3-pointers from Pierce, overtook Central for the first time before the quarter was over and led 27-26 at halftime.

Central hosts South Rowan on Friday while Ledford hosts North Davidson.

Mike Duprez can be reached at 249-3981, ext. 218 or mike.duprez@the-dispatch.com.