Bluejays clip Indians

Sunday, February 8, 2009
Jackson's Bobby Clark shoots as Charleston's Chase McClendon defends during the fourth quarter Saturday at Jackson.

Jackson trailed Charleston by as many as 19 points during the third quarter, but the Indians stormed back to get within five points with a little more than a minute and a half left in the fourth quarter Saturday.

But Charleston converted all six free throws it attempted from there to post a 66-57 victory at Jackson High School.

The Indians had trouble all game stopping senior Donald Dixon and junior Deonte Jones.

Dixon poured in 31 points. Jones, who has shot approximately 43 percent from 3-point range this season, netted 22 points, including six 3-pointers.

"[Jones] is one of the best jump shooters I've seen," Jackson senior Marcus Harris said. "[Dixon] didn't miss. There's not much you can do. We let him get to the middle too much."

Jackson's Marcus Harris nearly loses the ball to Charleston's Chase McClendon during the fourth quarter Saturday at Jackson.

Dixon and Jones combined to net a remarkable 53 of their team's 66 points and scored all but three of the Bluejays' points in the first half.

"We've been working real hard in practice on our shooting and defense, and we showed it out there tonight," Dixon said.

Jackson had a difficult time guarding Dixon whether it was in a man-to-man or zone defense.

"We started out in a zone and Dixon did a good job of getting the high post," Jackson coach Darrin Scott said. "We didn't guard him well there and he scored quite a bit. And then the second half, when we got down, we had to go man. He's really good with that 10 to 15 foot area. He can shot fake, put it on the floor and he finishes around the basket. When we got down, we couldn't focus only on him. We had to keep playing and he was able to find gaps."

Jackson (9-10) converted just 12 of 22 attempts (55 percent) from the free-throw line.

Jackson's Henrie Williams shoots over Charleston's Demarques McKeller during the first quarter Saturday at Jackson.

"When we cut it down to five, if we would have knocked down free throws," Scott said. "If we shoot 70 percent, that's at least four more points. So instead of five, it's a two- or three-point game, and who knows what happens after that."

Charleston (9-9) led 30-22 at halftime. The Bluejays went on an 11-0 run in the first 3 minutes of the third quarter to lead 41-22.

Jackson cut its deficit to 44-36 with a minute left in the third, but Jones and Dixon each hit shots in the final minute to build the lead to 49-36 after three quarters.

Dixon and Jones combined to score every one of the Bluejays' third-quarter points.

"We know how to play in the close games, and Dixon and Jones, they are our go-to guys," Charleston coach Danny Farmer said. "They are our two scorers for us. And we never felt like that it was a threat or anything [when Jackson narrowed the deficit]. We just kept on playing hard."

Jackson's Lucas Davis passes over Charleston's Mackenzie Ivy during the fourth quarter.

Harris said his team gave Charleston too many second shot attempts, which cost the Indians at times when they were staging comebacks.

"Against teams like that, you can't give up second shots," Harris said. "Once you get a chance to stop them, you've got to stop them and not give them the ball back."

Charleston led 56-40 with 5:13 left in the fourth quarter. Jackson then went on a 13-2 run to cut its deficit to 58-53.

But Charleston hung on. The Bluejays had more balanced scoring in the fourth with six players scoring. The Bluejays shot 11 of 15 from the free-throw line in the fourth.

"I was proud of the guys on how they battled back because it was a 19-point game at one point," Harris said. "There's still a lot of things we need to do so it's not where we're battling to stay in games."



@z_agate_no tab_no indnt_bld ld:CHARLESTON (66) -- Antonio Riggens 4, Akeem Sharp 2, Jeremy Spencer 5, Deonte Jones 22, Donald Dixon 31, Chase McClendon 2. FG 23, FT 13-22, F 19. (3-pointers: Jones 6, Spencer 1)

JACKSON (57) -- Marcus Harris 11, Kyle Keith 5, Lucas Davis 3, Zach McDowell 6, Eli Gohn 2, Henrie Williams 15, Bobby Clark 15. FG 21, FT 12-22, F 17. (3-pointers: Keith 1, Clark 2.)

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