Jackson tops Charleston

Wednesday, February 2, 2005

On senior night for the Jackson boys basketball team, its top senior, guard Jack Puisis, gave the Indians a spark off the bench.

Puisis hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with less than 30 seconds remaining to push Jackson to a 60-56 win against Charleston.

With Jackson (19-2) up by two with 2 seconds remaining, Puisis iced the game by picking himself off the floor after a hard foul by Ashton Farmer and knocked down two free throws. He finished with a game-high 20 points.

"That 3-point shot decided the game," Charleston coach Danny Farmer said. "He hit a big, big shot, and I knew he would, and he hit that from way behind the 3-point line, so that was a well-deserved win."

Said Jackson coach Darrin Scott: "He hit some big shots for us that second half, and the thing I liked about it was, I thought he was aggressive and confident and attacking the basket again, and that's what we need from him."

Puisis, the Indians' captain and one of six seniors, decided it would be best to allow Jackson's other five seniors to start the game.

Charleston (12-8) held Puisis scoreless in the first quarter after he entered with 4:11 left in the period and the Bluejays leading 6-5.

But Puisis started to heat up in the second quarter, scoring five points, and he took over the second half.

After Jackson broke a halftime tie to pull ahead 39-35, Puisis twice beat the Charleston defense down the court for layups in less than a minute to push the Indians to a 43-37 lead. The Indians than went inside to 6-foot-8 senior Ryan Mirly, who scored off of a Puisis miss to end the third and made Jackson's first two baskets of the fourth.

Mirly finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds.

After Mirly's second score of the quarter staked Jackson to a 49-41 lead, the Bluejays answered by pounding the ball inside to Farmer, a 6-7 senior, and sophomore Jamarcus Williams, who led the Bluejays with 17 points. A Williams jumper at 2:11 completed a 11-2 Charleston run that gave the Bluejays the lead.

Puisis hit a 3-point basket to give the Indians the lead with 1:45 to go, but Charleston took a 56-54 lead on Shawn Sherrell's two free throws with 39 seconds left before Puisis' late heroics.

After Cody Cardwell missed a 3-pointer from the right side, 6-10 junior Aaron Redecker grabbed the rebound and found Puisis behind the top of the key for the go-ahead bucket.

"Thanks to my big, tall 6-10 guy for getting that rebound and kicking it out to me," Puisis said. "We don't want him to kick it out, we want him to be aggressive and go to the basket. But, hey, I'm appreciative of it, I love him for it. Coach may get on to him a little bit for not sticking it in the hole, but I think it was a good move."



CHARLESTON (56) -- Shawn Sherrell 12, Tavis Hamilton 5, Ashton Farmer 15, Justin Clark 7, Jamarcus Williams 17. FG 22, FT 9-16, F 19 (3-pointers: Hamilton 1, Clark 1, Williams 1. Fouled out: none)

JACKSON (60) -- Kyle Pridemore 9, Ryan Mirly 18, Cody Cardwell 5, Jack Puisis 20, Drue McNeely 3, Aaron Redecker 5. FG 23, FT 9-18, F 17 (3-pointers: Puisis 2, Pridemore 1, Cardwell 1, McNeely 1. Fouled out: none)

JV -- Jackson 63, Charleston 33

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