Carson boys pull away against North Valleys
RENO — It was a trap game, plain and simple.
Carlos Mendeguia, Carson High boys basketball coach, knew it. The problem was his players didn’t know or didn’t care.
Instead of a comfortable win against a young team, the Senators had to scratch and claw for a 50-41 win over pesky North Valleys Tuesday night in a Division I crossover game.
Carson improved to 5-0 in league play, and will be looking to sweep the High Desert League when the crossover schedule concludes with a Friday home game (7 p.m.) against the McQueen Lancers.
“Absolutely it was a trap game,” Mendeguia said after a lengthy post-game chat with his team. “I’ve been worried about this game since the last game we played (against Reno). They took Douglas down to the wire at Douglas, and that’s a tough place to play.
“We’re playing up and down right now. It’s a roller-coaster with us. We didn’t have a very good practice. We’re going to get everybody’s best shot. We’re a marked team.”
Carson led just 38-36 after three quarters, and the Senators increased their bulge to 48-39 with a 10-4 surge in the first 5 1/2 minutes of the final period. Tez Allen scored five and Jayden DeJoseph four.
A DeJoseph finger roll made it 40-36, and after a free throw by Jalen Meadors, Allen increased the lead to 42-37 with a lay-up. The Panthers’ Ejay Obanya was called for a charging foul, wiping out a basket. Carson made the Panthers pay when DeJoseph scored again to make it 44-37 with 5:26 left. Asa Carter stole a pass, but CHS was unable to convert at the other end.
After a Carson turnover, Obanya was whistled for another charge, and Allen scored from the low block to make it 46-37 with 3:50 left. The Panthers never got closer than seven points the rest of the way.
Those two charge calls were huge, according to NV coach Richard Peraldo.
“It was up for grabs at the start of the fourth quarter,” Peraldo said. “There were three charges, one that wasn’t called and two that were. That was big; a 4 or 6-point swing right there. We didn’t play our best basketball by any means.
“We like to play fast and shoot a lot of 3-pointers. We usually shoot 30 or 35 3s, and I don’t think we shot more than 20 tonight. Carson plays slower, and they controlled the tempo.”
And, Carson did a tremendous defensive job on Josh Mea (3, 11.3 average), Sean Flanary (6, 11.4 average), Jalen Meadors (10, 13.9 average) and A.J. Dennis (13, 11.0 average), the Panthers’ top four scorers. The quartet entered the game averaging a combined 48 points, and CHS held them to 32. Dennis scored 13, two over his average, but the other three were all under their averages.
The key was Meadors, who had 33 3-pointers thus far. But, he hadn’t run into Asa Carter yet, either. Meadors hit two 3-pointers, but the one in the second half was when Carter went to help a teammate. Carter proved again he’s one of the best shutdown defenders in northern Nevada.
“We wanted to limit his (Meadors’ touches),” Mendeguia said. “Meadors is a good player. Asa did a great job on him.”
“Asa is the best defensive player in the north,” Peraldo said. “He just got right up into him.”
Carter made his presence felt at the offensuve end, too, scoring 12 points. Eight of those came in the second quarter which helped CHS grab a 26-23 lead after the first 16 minutes.
North Valleys took an 18-16 lead midway through the first half on a putback by Cardayell Morgan. Carter scored six straight points, four of them coming on mid-range jump shots, to give the Senators a 22-18 advantage with 3:56 left.
A jump shot by Jace Keema and putback by Allen made it 26-21 before Mea made it 26-23.