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First quarter flurry leads Indians past Cardinals, 49-38

Jan. 8—OSKALOOSA — Returning back from the winter break, the Oskaloosa Indians were back on the hardwood on Friday as they played host to Newton for a Little Hawkeye Conference bout. The Indians got to work early and built a double digit lead after the first and were able to hold it the rest of the way in a 49-38 victory.

The Oskaloosa Gym was filled with supporters donning blue in support of the Blue Jays of Perry High School, which was the scene of a tragic shooting on Thursday morning. The Osky girls also wore blue ribbons in their hair in support.

The game got underway with Newton jumping out in front 5-1 early after a three and layup. But it was Indian center Dasia Foster going to work in the paint scoring Osky's first seven points of the game before a steal and a layup on the other end by Kassie Johnson put the Indians ahead 9-5. Lydia Van Veldhuizen added a three-pointer and Foster continued to dominate against Newton's man-to-man defense with 13 first quarter points. After the 5-1 Cardinal start, Osky enjoyed an 18-3 run the rest of the first quarter to lead 19-8 going to the second.

For the rest of the way there was a lot of back and forth. Foster added seven more points while Johnson and Haylee Parker both drained three-pointers. When the halftime horn sounded it was Oskaloosa holding a steady 34-20 lead.

Newton switched up to a 2-3 zone in the second half and made it hard for the Osky offense to find Foster in the post. Both sides struggled with turnovers and the Indians were held to just 15 points over the last 16 minutes of the game. Osky made up for it on the defensive end and were able to close out the double digit win.

The Oskaloosa defense held Newton to 30% shooting from the field and 5-of-20 from three while also forcing 17 Cardinal turnovers.

Foster led the Indians with 28 points including 20 coming in the first half. Johnson added nine points.

Oskaloosa (7-3, 2-3 LHC) will travel to No. 8 (4A) Norwalk (9-2, 3-1 LHC) on Friday at 6:15 p.m.

Colin Peters can be reached at 641-672-2581, by email at cpeters@oskyherald.com or on Twitter @ColinPetersOH.