Cinderella story Indianapolis Metro (22-6) defeated perennial power Triton (23-4) 59-55 Saturday morning at Conseco Fieldhouse to capture the Indiana Class 1A championship.
Indy Metro, a charter school founded five years ago to improve kids' chances of graduating high school, might be the most surprising champion since, well, ever. The team only has eight players on its roster, many of whom have a history of suspension and other school-related problems.
Triton, on the other hand, has treated Conseco Fieldhouse like a second home. The school from Bourbon, Ind., near Lake Michigan, has been to state three out of the past four years, including a championship in 2009.
Triton raced to an 8-0 lead in the first quarter, but Indy Metro battled to knot the score at 12 after the first quarter. The teams traded punches in the second quarter as Triton took a 24-23 lead into the break.
Triton jumped out to a quick six-point lead in the third quarter, but Indy Metro again fought back to take a six-point lead of its own heading into the final quarter.
Clay Yeo and Griffyn Carpenter did their best to keep Triton in the game in the fourth in combining for 17 points, but Indy Metro hit seven of eight free throws in the final minute to seal the game and the championship.
Jerrbryon Graves led a balanced assault from Indy Metro with 15 points and five assists. Raymond Green, Reese Williams and Anthony Jackson each had 13 points. Jackson added 13 rebounds as well.
Leo and Carpenter paced Triton with 19 and 15 points, respectively. Leo also had six rebounds and six steals before fouling out in the fourth quarter.
Indy Metro's biggest problem now? It must find a place to hang its new championship banner. The basketball team doesn't even have a gym.