River Ridge (20-9), the No. 1 seed out of Region 7AAAA, had not lost to a Class AAAA opponent all season.
Coach Matt Bohon said that it was certainly disappointing to see the season end, but he wasn't at all disappointed in his players or their effort Saturday night.
"I'm disappointed in the result, but I'm not disappointed in their effort," Bohon said. "They played their guts out. I thought we played well enough defense to win. We missed a couple of easy shots that we normally hit. If we had hit those shots, we'd be fine."
River Ridge fell behind quickly when Carrollton opened the game with a 9-0 run, which prompted Bohon to call a timeout. The Knights started out with a pair of free throws and a 3-pointer by Steven Spears. By the end of the first quarter, River Ridge had cut the deficit to 13-7.
Nick Masterson hit back-to-back shots, including a 3-pointer to give River Ridge a 14-13 lead with 6:30 left in the second quarter. The teams were trade the lead several times in the period and when the buzzer sounded for half-time, Carrollton led by one, 23-22.
Both teams opened slowly in the third with River Ridge making its first basket with 4:25 on the clock. The Knights trailed by as many as four points in the third quarter, but rallied over the final 3 minutes.
Masterson made a pair of free throws, Joel Thacker hit a short jumper and Spears used a layup to tie the game at 30-all with 39 seconds remaining in the third. Spears, who was fouled on the layup, broke the tie with a free throw to put River Ridge on top at the end of three.
It was Carrollton's turn to play catch-up in the fourth as the Knights held a two-point led most of the quarter. With 1:54 remaining it was tied 38-all after a basket by Masterson. With 25 seconds remaining, Carrollton went up by two.
The Knights called a time out and attempted to set up a final shot, however, the 3-point attempt fell short and no one was in position to get the rebound. The Knights were forced to foul and Carrollton's Jarrel Rowe gave his team two more points. In the final 10 seconds of the game, River Ridge turned the ball over, allowing the Trojans to add another basket to their lead.
Montae Glenn scored 24 points for Carrollton, including all 13 of the Trojans points in the first quarter.
River Ridge was led by Masterson, who finished with 17. No other Knight scored more than seven points.
Bohon had nothing negative to say about his team.
"I thought we would be moving on, but I couldn't be more proud of my team," Bohon said. "I mean, we were out-sized, out-quicked and I thought we battled for 32 minutes. We just had to hit one shot here or there and we wouldn't have been alright."