Jehovah-Jireh abandoned a key portion of its game plan. The Warriors did not drive to the basket enough to please their coach.
An early lead put Jehovah-Jireh in the driver’s seat and defense also paved the way for a 59-47 victory over Carencro in a meeting of defending LHSAA champions Friday night.
“We did not shoot the ball well at all at the start. There were some mental mistakes and errors in that third quarter that we need to clean up,” Jehovah-Jireh coach Dirk Ricks said. “We knew (Carencro) would never stop and they would keep coming at us. We wanted to be more aggressive driving the ball and missed some driving lanes. But we did play solid defense.”
Timothy Jackson scored a game-high 22 points and had eight rebounds for the Warriors (23-4), the defending Division V select champions. Jaron Davis added 18 and John Paul Ricks had 11. Joseph Charles scored 15 points and had 11 rebounds for defending 4A champion Carencro (14-8).
“We played defense and rebounded the ball,” Jackson said. “Whatever my team lacked, I tried to pick up. That is what we do.”
The game was tied twice in the first minute. A 3-pointer from the top of the key by Davis and a layup off a steal by John Paul Ricks gave JCA a 9-4 lead a minute later.
Carencro got within two at 9-7 when Charles made a 3-pointer from the right wing with 5:15 to go in the first quarter. But the Bears scored just two points after that and Jehovah-Jireh led 17-9 after one quarter of the game played at Geo Prep.
Neither team shot well in the first quarter and things got worse for the Bears in the second quarter. A 3-pointer by Julian Lander was the lone field goal for Carencro. The Bears made 1 of 13 second-quarter shots. Meanwhile, JCA was 2 of 9 but led 26-16 at halftime.
It looked like Carencro would put it together in the third quarter. A 10-1 surge ended with a floater in the lane by Charles that made it 31-27 with 3:50 remaining. Davis drove the lane for one basket, before Jackson converted a layup and free throw to extend the JCA lead back to nine points.
The Warriors led 41-31 going into fourth quarter. Carencro got no closer than seven in the final eight minutes. Physical play led to some pushing and shoving and ultimately a technical foul on the Bears with 1:47 to go.
“We took good shots … the kind of shots we normally make,” Carencro coach Chris Kovatch said. “There rolled in and rolled around and did not fall in the first half. We told them to keep shooting The way the game was allowed to play out, I think that also led to some issues at the end.”