BICKNELL — North Knox's defense had spurts where it kept pace with North Daviess' sixth-best scoring defense in the state, but the Warriors didn't have an answer for Cougars' freshman Jaylen Mullen.
Mullen scored a game-high 24 points, and Class A No. 7 North Daviess held North Knox without a field goal most of the second half in dumping the Warriors, 45-35.
Holtman Doades scored 19 points to lead North Knox (9-11), while Reece Hammelman was next with eight points. Mullen did most of his damage at the free-throw line, hitting 10-of-12, and scored at least five points in every quarter. Trevor Riggins was next for the Cougars (13-7) with 10 points.
North Knox's offense was great over the first four and final four minutes of the game, but in the middle 24 minutes, the Warriors managed just 13 points against North Daviess' stout defense, which allows 41.4 per game.
North Knox built a 9-2 lead out of the gate, but the Cougars turned it into three-point edge by the end of the first period, and they gradually built the gap to 40-22 before the Warriors finished with a flurry.
North Knox countered its biggest deficit with a 13-3 push, capped off by consecutive 3s by Doades to get the margin with eight with 54 seconds left. But Mullen answered with two free throws on the other end, and after missing their next attempt, the Warriors opted not to foul in the final 25 seconds.
The Warriors quick start, which included 3s by Isaiah Collins and Doades, was answered by 10 straight from the Cougars. Hammelman scored on a putback with six seconds left, but North Daviess quickly got it up the floor, and Riggins' 18-footer at the buzzer put his team in front, 14-11.
The Cougars scored the first five in the second to go up by eight, and the biggest margin of the half was 23-13. Hammelman netted a free throw and Doades buried a 3-pointer to get the gap to six, but Mullen drained two free throws in the final seconds to take the lead to 25-17 at intermission.
Doades had two free throws to start the third period, but they didn't score again as North Daviess took its lead to 32-19 after three.
North Knox's junior varsity lost, 52-37. Brocksmith led the JV Warriors (5-12) with 13 points, and Gavan Carpenter scored nine.
The Warriors visit Class A honorable mention Bloomfield at 6 p.m. next Friday.
NORTH DAVIESS 45, NORTH KNOX 35
Wagler (f) 1 0-0 2, La. Wilson (f) 0 0-0 0, Riggins (f) 4 2-5 10, Knepp (f) 1 0-1 2, Mullen (g) 6 10-12 24, Townsend 3 0-0 6, Lengacher 0 1-2 1, Lo. Wilson 0 0-0 0. Totals: 15 13-20 45.
Kixmiller (f) 0 0-0 0, Sheren (f) 1 0-1 2, Hammelman (g) 2 4-6 8, Doades (g) 6 3-3 19, Collins (g) 1 0-0 3, Sloan 0 0-0 0, Brocksmith 1 0-0 3, Carpenter 0 0-0 0. Totals: 11 7-10 35.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
North Daviess |14-11-7-13 — 45
North Knox |11-6-2-16 — 35
3-pointers: North Daviess 2 (Mullen 2), North Knox 6 (Doades 4, Brocksmith, Collins). Fouls: North Daviess 11, North Knox 18. JV: North Daviess 52-37.