Grimes never left the picture, closing within 43-42 early in the fourth quarter before Ludden's Kelly Beaudoin stepped up, draining five straight points to restore his team's margin.
With Stone and fellow senior Mike Sugamosto (just five points) shut down and Ludden defending well all over the court, it carried a 53-45 lead to the closing 90 seconds - and still Grimes almost pulled it out.
Kaigler and Young missed six consecutive free throws, and Casey Evans' banked-in 3-pointer with 15 seconds left made it 54-51. Finally, Beaudoin stepped to the line and made the clinching foul shots, and though Ater got a 3-pointer in the waning seconds, Ludden would hang on.
Two nights before facing Ludden, the Cobras had to deal with Marcellus in the make-up of a game snowed out earlier in the month. Led again by Stone and Sugamosto, Grimes got away in the second half and beat the Mustangs 74-59.
From the time it started the game 9-0, the Cobras never trailed. Yet its ability to build a big early lead got hampered when Stone picked up three fouls in the first half, forcing him to sit for long periods of time.
In the meantime, Marcellus pulled within three, 32-29, by halftime, fueled by Chaz Hayes, who had 10 of his 24 points in the second quarter. Mike Fox, who finished with 16 points, also made big contributions.
Grimes would spend the third quarter regaining control, partly due to Sugamosto, who had eight of his 15 points in that frame. Stone did the rest, never picking up that fourth foul and using a series of nifty moves to create space - and baskets - for himself.
Stone finished with a season-best 28 points, and Casey Evans added 10 points as Gai Ater put in eight points. The Cobras' defense also did a superb job bottling up Marcellus star Steve Raven, holding him to a single field goal.