Two months.
That’s about how long the Boonville Pirates basketball team had to wait before playing the Mexico Bulldogs again in NCMC action Friday night at the Windsor gymnasium.
After losing to the Bulldogs 72-64 back on December 1st in Mexico, the Pirates have played 18 games during that span along with seven conference games.
But this was no ordinary game with Boonville also holding Courtwarming. As it turned out, the Pirates jumped on the Bulldogs early and never relinquished the lead for a convincing 84-75 victory.
The win improved Boonville’s record to 13-6 overall and 4-4 in the NCMC.
“It was nice to get a victory tonight after the disappointing showing we had on Tuesday night versus California. The kids were much more focused and were able to get a win against a team that has been at the top of the conference standings over the last nine years. We split with Mexico this year, the second year in a row, which is a push in the right direction for our program. It shows that we can compete with the better teams in our conference. The Pirates started out 0-3 in conference but we have won four out of our last five contests. Tonight, both defenses struggled to stop each other. But our game plan was to limit the transition game of the Bulldogs. We wanted to keep them out of the lane and keep them off the foul line which we did. Though they hit 11 3’s on the night, we were able to execute our game plan as they got very little in transition and were only able to get to the line 10 times on the night. I felt that we did a great job of handling their press as we only committed five turnovers on the night, which is excellent against an aggressive defensive team. Plus we were able to get out in transition ourselves and score some easy buckets or get to the foul line. Our offensive decision making was excellent on the night. We shared the ball and were able to play inside out all night. Plus, I thought our offensive rebounding kept us in the ballgame, especially as Mexico made their charge late in the game. We answered every one of their runs. It was a great all around effort by our kids. We were able to get back on track tonight and continue to play good basketball as we head into district play in three weeks.”
Bryce Fuemmeler had one of his better games of the season with 20 points along with six assists, three rebounds and one steal.
Of course Fuemmeler was just one of five players in double figures for the Pirates. Tavious Brazil finished the game with a double-double with 18 points, 14 rebounds, two assists and two steals while Riley Lang was right behind him with 17 points, seven rebounds, two assists and two steals. Jady Reese chipped in 14 points, eight rebounds and two steals while Alec Adair tossed in 12 points along with four assists, three rebounds and three steals.
Ryan Beaver came off the bench to contribute three points while Avery Reardon pulled down two rebounds.
For Mexico, James Norton had 16, Troy Isaac 14 and Cameron Holman and Tyler Spargo each with 11.
Riley Lang had no trouble getting up for the Bulldogs. After scoring only seven points earlier in the week against California, Lang took the lead for the Pirates with 10 of the team’s 23 points.
While beating the Bulldogs in about every facet of the game in the first quarter, Boonville also came out and shot the ball well by hitting 62 percent from the field and 50 percent from the arc.
The Pirates also out-rebounded Mexico 9-4 while finishing the period with just one turnover.
About the only bright spot in the first half for the Bulldogs was the play of senior James Norton, who had 13 of the team’s 29 points.
But even that couldn’t help the Bulldogs much in the second quarter. Although Mexico outscored Boonville 16-15, they still trailed at the break by a score of 38-29.
Boonville’s biggest lead of the half, meanwhile, came at the 2:12 mark after a fastbreak layup by Alec Adair to push it to 15 at 38-23. That also capped off a 8-0 run by the Pirates. As for Mexico, they never got any closer than seven points after Isaac Troy buried a three to start the quarter to make it 23-16. The Bulldogs also closed out the half with a 6-0 run to cut it to nine.
Forty-five points in one quarter is a lot for two teams. But Boonville and Mexico did it, with the Pirates holding a slight edge 24-21.
Boonville also maintained its 12 point lead after three at 62-50.
Tavious Brazil came out strong for the Pirates with eight of the team’s 24 points, which included a dunk at the 3:04 mark to start a 10-0 run.
Boonville also continues to shoot at a high percentage in the period by hitting 11 of 23 shots for 48 percent.
Mexico and Boonville also combined for five threes in the third quarter. Of course the Bulldogs had three of those.
As expected, the Bulldogs made a run at Boonville in the fourth quarter while cutting the lead at one time to six at 71-65 with 3:08 left.
Except this time the Pirates answer over the final three minutes with a 13-8 advantage for the victory.
Although Boonville has been prone to large runs by teams this season, the Pirates showed that they could play through that in the final period.
Nonetheless, the Bulldogs still outscored Boonville 25-22 while going on runs of seven and six points.
The Pirates did what they had to against the Bulldogs. They kept their turnovers to a minimum and out-rebounded Mexico. However when it counted, the Pirates showed what they are capable of by finishing the game shooting 53 percent from the field and 65 percent from the foul line.
The charity stripe also turned out to be the difference as Boonville hit 20 of 31 shots compared to just 5 of 10 for Mexico.
Nobody was happier to see the Boonville Pirates JV basketball team snap a four-game skid than head coach Jesse Oswald.
While the Pirates have struggled the last four games to hold on to a lead, they were more than good Friday night while beating the Bulldogs 62-52.
Boonville, improving to 9-4 on the season, actually trailed Mexico 13-11 after first period’s end before rallying back with a 51-39 advantage for the rest of the game. The Pirates also led Mexico 28-27 at the half and 44-40 after three.
“It felt a lot better getting back on the winning side of things,” Oswald said. “Mexico has a very good jv team with lots of athletes and we were able to cause a lot of havoc on the court and force turnovers. I thought everyone from our guards to our bugs stepped up and played great tonight. We made some minor adjustments at halftime and everyone stuck with the game plan and changes and we had a lot of success. This was a good team win.”
Philip Udinyiwe led the scoring attack for Boonville with 15 points. Clayton Gochenour tossed in 13 while Giovanni Strickland added 11, Malik Brazil seven, Avery Reardon six, Joshua Udinyiwe and Dylan Barnthouse each with three, Kyle Chrisman two and Dylan Watson and Thomas Simmons each with one.