Senior Maximus Gizzi broke New Palestine’s 41-year-old career scoring record Saturday, as he tallied 25 points for the Dragons in a 75-61 loss at Southport.
Gizzi’s 25th point Saturday was the 1,286th of his NPHS career, breaking a mark held by Tom Giles since 1979. Gizzi also had three steals, tying Ryan Curry’s record of 102 career steals. He had four assists Saturday and is now one assist shy of Mitch Miggenburg’s school record of 328.
Gizzi hit two 3-pointers among his seven field goals and was 9-of-9 from the line Saturday. The record-tying and breaking points came on his final two free throws, fitting for a player who has hit 385 in his career and has averaged more than six free throw attempts per game.
The Dragons got off to a hot start Saturday, scoring the game’s first six points. Gizzi scored seven and Eric Roudebush four in the first quarter to stake the Dragons to a 17-11 edge. Gizzi scored back-to-back baskets to open the second quarter and push NP’s lead to 10. But the host Cardinals got red hot from 3-point range and cut the Dragons’ lead to one in three possessions with back-to-back-to-back 3-pointers, two from freshman A.J. Dancler. NP extended the lead with a 3-pointer by Steele Brasfield and two points each from Dawson Eastes and Matthew Brown, but the Cardinals hit two more triples to answer and tied the game at 28 on a shot by Anthony Ball at the second-quarter buzzer.
Southport took its first lead of the game on a 3-pointer to open the second half, but the Dragons again answered with four quick points by Gizzi to re-take the lead at 32-31. From there, the Cardinals’ 3-point barrage continued, as they hit five more triples in the quarter to extend their lead to 50-40 going into the final period. Gizzi scored 10 points in the final quarter. Roudebush added five and Eastes four, but Southport was 19-22 from the line in the closing eight minutes to maintain its lead.
In addition to Gizzi’s 25 points, Eastes scored 10. Roudebush tallied nine points. Blaine Nunnally and Brasfield each scored six, while Brown tallied five.
Brevin Jefferson led Southport with 27 points, including 20 in the second half. Dancler hit seven 3-pointers and scored 21 points, as they led four Cardinals in double figures.
The Dragons (3-9) return home next weekend, facing Pendleton Heights Friday and Mooresville Saturday.
The Dragon JV won 52-42, outscoring Southport 18-4 in the fourth quarter to seize the victory. Jaret Whitaker led the Dragons with 12 points. Luke Burgess added 10.