Christmas tournament: Charleston swarms Meadow Heights

Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Meadow Heights junior Daylan Davis takes a shot over Charleston defender Claude Armstrong during the third quarter Monday. (Laura Simon)

The opening two possessions told the story -- a Charleston 3-pointer and a Meadow Heights turnover lead to an easy Bluejays basket.

Charleston's pressure wore down the Panthers, and the Bluejays used big spurts to dominate en route to a 90-50 opening-round victory Monday at the Southeast Missourian Christmas tournament.

The Bluejays forced 26 turnovers -- 13 in each half. The majority of them lead to easy transition points.

"That's what our plan was, to put pressure on them," Charleston coach Danny Farmer said. "We didn't think they could sustain our pressure because we know they don't see it every night. So our game plan was to put the pressure on and get easy buckets."

Added Charleston guard Gregory Tucker: "We just really wanted to come out and make a statement. Put the game away early and take their hope away early and get some rest for tomorrow."

Meadow Heights guard Trent Kiefer defends Charleston's Avery Williams during the fourth quarter Monday.

Charleston's defense wasn't the aspect of its game that was on.

The Bluejays came out firing from long range, draining four 3-pointers in the first quarter alone. Charleston finished with seven treys.

"We shot it well starting the game out," Farmer said. "We're kind of off and on shooting. Sometimes we shoot it well. When we're shooting it well, we're pretty good."

Meadow Heights coach Tom Brown said that both the turnovers and the Bluejays' hot shooting doomed the Panthers.

"I think they were a little intimidated by Charleston," Brown said about his team. "We let them get out to a lead and then that helped and then they shot really well. I don't know what they shot, but they shot real well. But when you make bad passes and they score off every one of them, it's a big difference. They're a good, solid defensive team and we just made too many mental errors."

Charleston started the game with a Tucker 3-pointer, a steal and a Jerry Carter layup.

Meadow Heights earned a bucket, but Charleston went on a 12-0 run, including two 3-pointers, to make it 17-2 early.

Tucker had five points in the spurt and eight in the quarter. The junior finished with 17.

"I just took my time and found open shots," Tucker said. "I knocked them down. Easy points."

Added Farmer: "Tucker averages 20 points a game. He was doing what I expected him to do. He can take it to the bucket, pull up and hit the jump shot. His range is unlimited. He can hit 3-pointers. He was having a Tucker-like game."

Charleston appeared to be headed to a route in the early minutes of the second quarter by starting the quarter on a 6-0 run to stretch its lead to 37-15, but the Panthers threatened to make a game of it when they answered with a 7-0 run of their own.

The Bluejays quickly ended those hopes.

Charleston went on a 12-0 run and closed the half on a 16-4 spurt to take a commanding 57-28 lead at the half.

"We have to get some kids to step up to make those stops," Brown said. "That's when we didn't get back, we made bad passes and we had kids sucking air. I think our conditioning, we're not there yet. They were in better condition. When they made those runs, we didn't get back. We had times we played even with them a few minutes in a row, but they just took over."

Carter led all scorers with 16 points in the first half. He finished with 22.

A bright spot for the Panthers came from junior point guard Daylan Davis. He had a team-high 18 points.

"He does a great job of distributing the ball," Brown said. "He does a good job. He's just a junior. He's really playing well for us. He still makes some young mistakes, but I'm proud of him."

Meadow Hts1315814--50
Charleston31262112--90

MEADOW HEIGHTS (50) -- Adam Walker 5, Aaron Mayfield 9, Daylan Davis 18, Aaron Rankin 2, Ethan Mayfield 2, Curtis Braswell 4, Calen Buerck 8, Tanner Bollmann 2. 22 FG. 4-8 FT. 13 F. (3-pointers: Walker 1, Mayfield 1. Fouled out: none)

CHARLESTON (90) -- Avery Williams 2, Aaron Cassell 7, Maurice Moore 4, Ryan Parham 4, Michael Hull 9, Trey Watkins 3, Greg Tucker 17, Jamaul Gray 7, Claude Armstrong 3, Jerry Carter 22, Darrion Henderson 2, Krushon Scott 10. 38 FG, 7-10 FT, 8 F. (3-pointers: Cassell 1, Hull 3, Watkins 1, Tucker 1, Carter 1. Fouled out: none)

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