Hall, Ironmen break Blue Devils’ hearts

By Paul Boggs - pboggs@civitasmedia.com

JACKSON, Ohio — Bryce Hall will likely be best remembered for his touchdown passes as a Jackson Ironmen football quarterback.

The Gallia Academy Blue Devils, conversely, would prefer to forever forget how Hall broke their collective hearts on Tuesday night.

That’s because Hall hit a three-point shot at the final buzzer, handing the visiting Blue Devils a heartbreaking 60-57 non-league boys basketball loss.

Hall, playing basketball for the first time since junior high school in Jackson, nailed the triple from the left wing with no time remaining.

Payton Speakman made the pass to Hall, breaking a 57-57 tie after Gallia Academy’s Miles Cornwell converted 2-of-3 free throws with nine seconds to play.

The two squads stood tied at 16-16 after the opening quarter, before Jackson took a 33-30 halftime advantage — and held a 43-42 edge after three periods.

Both teams tallied 22 total field goals, as Gallia Academy made 9-of-13 free throws and the Ironmen 8-of-14.

But Jackson drilled eight threes compared to four for the Blue Devils, as the Ironmen were 8-of-20 from long range — while GAHS shot 4-of-11.

For Gallia Academy, the difficult defeat dropped it to 4-2 — as the Blue Devils’ first heart-breaker came against Point Pleasant in overtime two weeks ago (Dec. 9).

That was a 66-64 setback, meaning both Blue Devil defeats are by a combined five points.

The improving Ironmen are now 4-3, having snapped a three-game losing streak in the process.

Carson Spohn, on 10 total field goals including four three-pointers, sank 24 total points to pace the winners.

Hall hit for 13 points on five total field goals, including a pair of treys, and 5-of-6 free throws.

Speakman made two three-balls towards eight points, while Cooper Donaldson dialed in one en route to seven.

Donaldson — the tallest player on the Jackson roster at six-foot, two-inches tall — led the smaller Ironmen with eight rebounds.

Josh Spires scored two buckets for four points, while Kendall Neal and Blake McCoy made a basket apiece.

Gallia Academy’s Justin Peck, on eight field goals, posted a team-high 16 points.

Justin McClelland canned 15 points for the Blue Devils, netting five field goals — including three trifectas —and 2-of-3 foul shots.

Cornwell, with seven points, connected for the other three.

Evan Wiseman, with four field goals and 4-of-4 free throws, tossed in a dozen points — while Zach Loveday landed two field goals for four points.

Gage Harrison had a basket and Cory Call a free throw to round out the Blue and White scoring.

Loveday with 10 and Wiseman with eight led the Devils in rebounding, while Wiseman dished out four of the club’s 10 assists.

The Blue Devils return home, and return to action tonight (Friday, Dec. 23), when they host South Gallia for another non-league duel.

Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106

By Paul Boggs