Iowa Central tripped up at Marshalltown

Iowa Central tripped up at Marshalltown

MARSHALLTOWN - The Iowa Central men rallied from a 16-point deficit in the second half but were unable to overcome Marshalltown here Saturday, falling 81-78.

Javonte Keck led the 14th-ranked Tritons (3-3 overall, 3-3 in ICCAC) with 19 points while PJ Ngambi added 17 and Jordan Majeed had 15. Jayden Stephens chipped in 10 off the bench.

For the Tigers (5-1, 5-1), David Roberts Jr. scored 20 and Deon'ta Lagway had 19. Marshalltown has now won five in a row since a loss in its season opener.

"We showed a lot of grit there to battle back, especially on the road," ICCC head coach Chad Helle said. "Still, we've got to figure out a better way to start games. We've kind of gotten ourselves stuck in these slow starts."

Stephens also had a team-high seven rebounds for Iowa Central with Majeed, Jaxon Smith and Keck adding four each. Smith and Stephens also had three assists and Smith added two steals.

With just over three minutes left, Stephens recorded a layup off a steal by Ngambi to give the Tritons a 73-72 lead. Marshalltown answered with a 3-pointer by Di'Ablo Stewart. 

The Tigers led 79-75 when Keck was fouled shooting a triple of his own. The sophomore drained all three but the Tigers converted at the free throw line to seal the win. 

Keck finished with 16 of his points over the final 20 minutes as Iowa Central outscored Marshalltown, 45-39. The Tritons were 8-for-16 from deep in the first half. 

Next up for Iowa Central will be Northeast inside Hodges Fieldhouse this Wednesday. Tip is set for 7 p.m.

-By Dana Becker