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HARDIN - For the second straight time, the Calhoun Warriors have beaten the Carrollton Hawks on their home court on Wednesday night in Hardin.

The game was postponed to last night after a referee, and former Calhoun football coach Glen Peyton suffered a heart attack during a JV game on Friday night. Fortunately, he has recovered and is doing well.

The Warriors used a strong second half to knock off the Hawks 53-42 and get back to the 500 mark at 13-13 after starting out the season 2-9. As for Carrollton they fall to 8-14 and have lost five of their last six.

“It feels pretty good [beating Carrollton], but I know we could’ve played a lot better though,” Drew Baalman said. “We hit our free throws at the end and held our composure, but we still have a lot of work to do.”

Baalman led all scorers with 15 points. Chandler Sievers added 14, and Blake Schuman scored nine.

Ethan Brannan finished with 12 points, and Gabe Jones tallied 11 for the Hawks.

Carrollton got off to a 16-8 first quarter lead, which included a buzzer-beater three-pointer by Jones, but things were uphill for the Hawks after that.

“We just didn’t rebound. [Calhoun] doubled us up on the glass. That’s unacceptable,” Carrollton head coach Matt Goetten said. “Just no heart on the offensive glass. That’s what it comes down to.”

The Hawks caused several turnovers, and some of them were unforced on Calhoun’s part. It didn’t help that senior leader and starting point guard Ty Bick sat out due to a rolled ankle he suffered last week. They hope to have him back this coming Monday when regionals start.

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“It’s no secret without Ty out there we’re a different animal especially the way we’ve been playing, although we went to Pittsfield the other night and handled [their] pressure pretty well. I don’t know what the deal was tonight,” Graner said. “I thought both teams played hard, but boy it was an ugly ball game all the way around. Fortunately, we did enough things right in the second half defensively to put us in position to win.”

Calhoun outscored Carrollton 30-18 in the second half.

The Warriors led 6-5 early in the game, but eventually retook the lead late in the third quarter and never let the Hawks take it back.

Freshman forward duo, Corey Nelson (6-6) and Ben Eberlin (6-7) played a big part in the fourth quarter by altering shots with their length. The pair played solid defense down the stretch and controlled the boards too.

“There’s no substitute in this game for length, and I’m just fortunate we’re going to have those guys for three more seasons after this one,” Graner said. “When you can alter shots or just take away that look it really helps your defense.”

The Hawks had their chances to close the gap in the fourth quarter by getting turnovers with their full-court press but failed to capitalize by missing a handful of layups. Another bug-a-boo for Carrollton was Brannan and Jones combining for six points in the second half.

“Those are the two guys we rely on to score. I thought Gabe in the second half relied a little too much on the three-point shot,” Goetten said. “When it falls early, he gets in a rhythm, but once it goes away from that, I thought he should get down low.”

Schumann was the next man up for Bick and put in a solid shift given the playing time he’s had for most of the season.

“Blake stayed the course. I know the minutes weren’t there early on that he would’ve liked as a senior, but that’s what we always preach. You never know when your number’s gonna be called,” Graner said. “His number’s been called these last few games. He was very good at times and looked a little nervous at times, but down the stretch, he made some very good plays.”

In the fourth quarter, Calhoun made 9-of-15 free throws to help seal the game late on, including Baalman going 4-of-4 from the stripe.

Steven Spencer also contributed to this story.

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