The New Palestine boys basketball team had a strong start Friday, but fell 70-55 to the host New Castle Trojans.
NP led 18-14 after a quarter thanks to strong 3-point shooting, as Matthew True hit three 3-pointers and scored 11 of his 14 points in the opening period.
Sophomore guard Maximus Gizzi tied a career high he set a week ago with 21 points, scoring 12 in the second half.
New Castle opened the second quarter with an 11-2 run to take the lead, and then finished with a 9-0 run to go up 34-24 at halftime. The Dragons responded to a 3-pointer that opened the second half with a 10-0 run, led by five points from Dawson Eastes, to cut the deficit to 37-34. But NC rallied with a 15-5 spurt that featured three 3-pointers and pushed its lead back to double digits. Again, NP rallied, with Gizzi and Gavin Hausz slicing through the paint to cut the deficit to 62-55, but NC scored the game’s final eight points.
Mason Gillis led NC with 28 points. Luke Bumbalough had 21 points. They combined for 16 of New Castle’s 18 fourth-quarter points to put the game away.
In addition to Gizzi and True’s double-figure games, Eastes scored seven second-half points. Hausz added six. Dylan Romine scored five and Jack Walker two.
The Dragons are now 4-2 overall and 1-1 in HHC play, while New Castle is 6-0 and 2-0 in the HHC. NP next plays Saturday night at Franklin Central on Teddy Bear Toss night. The JV and freshman games tip at 6 p.m., with varsity to follow at 7:30 p.m.
The Dragon JV also fell 54-41. Austin Howell and Jacob Hockett scored seven points each to lead NP.