Carson High had only one big run all night, but that's all it took to dispose of Wooster Friday night.
The Senators broke open a three-point game with an 18-4 run in the second quarter and made it stand up for a 63-56 win over the Colts at Morse Burley Gym.
The win, which moved the Carson boys to 2-3 in Sierra League play, was bittersweet. Center David Eller suffered a gash in his forehead in the first five minutes of the contest, and had to be taken to the hospital to get stitches. He is expected to miss today's game at North Valleys.
"We were a little more disciplined than they were," Carson coach Bruce Barnes said. "We're physically deeper on the bench. Our bench was a little better, and that was key."
Carson did get 20 points from its bench, 10 from Barnes' son, Brian, and five from Steve Fowzer, all free throws.
The Senators' 21-7 advantage at the foul line was huge, too. Wooster outshot Carson from the field, 24-18. Carson hit only 21 of its 36 attempts despite spending 90 minutes earlier in the day shooting free throws.
"'We missed 15 and I wonder how many of those were the front end of 1-and-1's," coach Barnes asked.
Only four times did Carson miss the first shot in a bonus situation.
No more than four points separated the teams in the first quarter, as Brian Barnes and Caleb Carter (17 points) scored four points apiece to stake the Senators to a 21-18 lead after the first eight minutes.
The teams traded scores in the first 30 seconds of the second quarter, and after that Carson established control.
Paul Cagle, who finished with 11 points and four rebounds, scored on a little jump hook in the lane, and following a Wooster turnover, scored on a 3-pointer when Wooster sagged off him. Kalvin Case converted a turnover into a basket, and after Esli Arista misfired, Carter was fouled and went 1-for-2 from the line to make it 31-20 with 5:52 left in the half.
The teams traded turnovers on their next two trips down the floor, and Carter made it 10 straight points with two free throws. Jamar Gray stopped the bleeding momentarily with a bucket, but back-to-back 3-pointers by Brian Barnes and Carter made it 39-22. Rob Valerius (9 points) completed the barrage with a nice drive to the basket and a 41-24 advantage with 3:20 left.
"We're not really a pressing team this year," coach Barnes said. "We have certain guys that can press (and cause problems). The only problem is that if they beat the press we may have only a guy 6-foot back there defending."
Barnes was referring to Carter, Fowzer, Brian Barnes, Cagle and Case. All of them were on the floor for the big run. Wooster didn't help itself either, turning the ball over seven times in that four-minute span.
This was one night where the Senators didn't play well with the lead. They never let it slip away, but they never built on it, either. That is something that drives basketball coaches nuts.
Wooster was able to get the deficit back down to 11 at the half thanks to a couple of buckets thanks to David Torres (16 points, 15 rebounds) and free throws by Deonte Baker and Gray.
The Senators did get their lead to 13 briefly, but the Colts ended the third quarter with two Torres baskets and one from Carlos Cota to get the deficit down to 51-44.
"They just didn't go away," coach Barnes said. "I think it was a little bit of us and a little of them. We took tough shots that we probably shouldn't have with an 11 or 12-point lead. We sometimes don't run the offense through and take the first shot we see."
Wooster scored the first basket of the fourth quarter, but three points by Valerius and another 3-pointer by Carter stretched the lead to 57-46 with 6:20 left.
Wooster scored on back-to-back possessions to cut the lead to 57-50. The Senators started to take the air out of the ball, running two minutes off the clock before Matt Rutledge was fouled. The Senators' point guard was slapped with a technical foul for his reaction to being fouled.
Rutledge did make both throws for a 59-50 lead, but James Williams went 1-for-2 from the line and then Arista drove the lane to make it 59-53.
Wooster went scoreless for the next two minutes, and Fowzer drained three foul shots and Zach Rispin hit one to stretch the lead to 10 before Cota's meanlngless 3-pointer.