It's a new look this season for the Broad Ripple boys basketball program.
Gone to graduation is Ron Patterson, the school's all-time leading scorer. Five new players, transfers from Arlington and Howe, enrolled in the summer.
It has taken some time to find the right mix, but the Rockets hope a 56-52 first-round City Tournament win over visiting Heritage Christian on Tuesday night is another step in the right direction.
"It's taken us a little bit of time with the new kids coming in, but we're getting there," said senior Darian Fitzgerald, a holdover from last season. "We have a mix of IPS students, new people coming into our system."
Broad Ripple (7-4) earned its fifth straight win with a big lift from newcomer Ralph Germany, a senior transfer from Howe. Germany hit four 3-pointers and finished with 17 points, including nine in the fourth quarter.
His 3 from the right corner with 3:08 left put the Rockets ahead 52-50, a lead they kept the rest of the way.
Heritage Christian (4-8) trailed by as many as 12 points in the first half but rallied behind senior Anthony Warrum to take a 42-34 lead late in the third quarter.
Germany sparked a 9-0 run with two 3-pointers, however, to give the Rockets the lead again early in the fourth. Warrum, who finished with 17 points, fouled out midway through the fourth quarter with his team trailing 49-48.
"Warrum is a very, very tough kid," Broad Ripple coach Scott Hicks said. "He gets in the lane and makes great decisions. He did that tonight and made it tough on us."
The top four teams in the 16-team tournament were seeded for the first time this year. Broad Ripple, seeded fourth, will play Bishop Chatard (5-7) in a quarterfinal game Thursday night at Tech.
Bishop Chatard defeated Washington 59-53 in Tuesday's second game at Broad Ripple, holding off a Continentals rally.
Senior Joe Fagan, in his first game since injuring his shoulder against Fort Wayne Luers on Dec. 22, scored 10 of his team-high 17 points in the fourth quarter.
"He made some real winning plays for us in the fourth quarter when we needed it," said Chatard coach Travis Daugherty said. "He brings a different attitude and it carries over in the confidence of the other guys."
Chatard led by 14 points in the third quarter before Washington rallied to go ahead in the fourth quarter. Zach Ladd scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half for the Continentals (5-7).
Fagan drilled a 3-pointer to put Chatard ahead 50-49 with 2:54 left, then answered a Ladd basket with a drive of his own to give the Trojans the lead for good with 2 minutes left.