Flory Era comes to an end in Kokomo

Written on 03/14/2024
Patrick Munsey

2nd Shift Sewer & Plumbing® is the leading provider of plumbing services in Howard County and the surrounding areas. With more than 30 years of experience, their knowledgeable and licensed technicians have the expertise to fix any plumbing or sewer problem you may have. 

The sun rose on March 11.

Kokomo basketball fans awoke a bit bleary-eyed that morning, maybe because of daylight savings time, or maybe because their beloved Wildkats came up short in the IHSAA Class 4A Regional the night before. But life is moving on, as is Flory Bidunga.

The Kats enjoyed three years of the uber-talented Bidunga as he policed the paint and rocked the rims at Memorial Gymnasium. But even a sure-thing, college-bound prospect can’t win games by himself. That was reinforced in the Wildkats’ 66-52 loss to Fishers last Saturday.

Bidunga was good for 20 points, seven rebounds, and four blocks — a vast improvement from his four-point performance against the Tigers in December. Unfortunately, two young men who had proved just as vital to Kokomo’s success throughout the season — Karson Rogers and Zion Bellamy — were uncharacteristically cold.

Rogers barely touched the ball, scoring just four points on four attempts. He also turned the ball over four times. Bellamy couldn’t buy a roadmap to the basket, hitting just one of his 10 shots and ending with six points.

On the other side of the court, Fishers featured well-rounded scoring, a deadeye at the foul line, and a swarming defense that managed 12 steals against the Kats. The Tigers’ ace, Taden Metzger, finished with 18 points to lead his team.

Kokomo closes the season with a 25-4 record. Rogers finished his season with 516 points, 242 rebounds, 100 assists, and 34 steals. Bidunga leaves with some eye-popping numbers amassed in just three years. He scored 1,609 points, pulled down 1,132 boards, and blocked 402 shots in his high school career.

Bellamy, who figures to lead the Wildkats next season, finished 2024 with 270 points, 100 assists, and 41 steals, leading the team in assists and steals per game.