Being undefeated isn’t always everything it’s cracked up to be.
By now, Blue Springs South realizes there are still some headaches, a fair share of lessons to be learned and a few less-than-ideal moments — even if the Jaguars’ unbeaten record doesn’t reflect any of that. But at least the Jaguars are learning those lessons without blemishing their record.
Blue Springs South overcame a lackluster performance and improved to 8-0 with a 64-56 win Wednesday against St. Joseph Central in an opening-round Nelson Division game of the American Family Insurance Holiday Basketball Classic at William Jewell College.
“There wasn’t a lot of energy or emotion on our side, and I felt like that’s something they took advantage of,” Blue Springs South coach Jimmy Cain said. “… Our defense didn’t have remotely close to the energy level that we need. I think it was there in spurts, but it wasn’t there consistently.”
The Jaguars built a double-digit lead in the second quarter, with Justin Pitts scoring nine of his 11 points in the opening half.
But an uninspiring rebounding effort allowed St. Joseph Central to hang within shouting distance until the final buzzer. Shun Williams posted a double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
“We came in thinking we were going to win, and we underestimated St. Joe,” Pitts said. “We should’ve been ready. Our defense and rebounding can get a lot better.”
Kevin Puryear led the Jaguars with 22 points on 9-of-17 shooting. Carl Martin added 12.
Blue Springs South will face Pleasant Hill in the Nelson Division semifinals at 6 p.m. Friday.
Osage“>Fort Osage 60, O’Hara 49
A physical Fort Osage team with a considerable size advantage outlasted O’Hara and a high-scoring fourth quarter turned a tightly contested game into a double-digit victory.
The Indians led by only two after three quarters before outscoring O’Hara 26-17 over the final eight minutes.
D’Vante Mosby provided the muscle inside with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Zach Adams scored a team-high 17 points for the Indians.
“We just started getting back to doing what we do — working it inside-out,” Mosby said of the fourth quarter. “We started doing our thing and not playing their game and taking quick shots.”
Fort Osage spoiled a shooting display from O’Hara guard Kyle Baker, who made five three-pointers en route to 24 points. The remainder of the Celtics combined for 25 points.
Fort Osage will play Lee’s Summit West at 4:30 p.m. Friday in the Nelson Division semifinals.
Lee’s Summit West 82, Central 42
Lee’s Summit West point guard Kyndall Powell found Monte Harrison for a backdoor alley-oop on the opening possession of the game.
It was simply the first of many highlights. Three players scored in double figures, and the Titans cruised to victory.
“It’s one of those things that coming out of Christmas, you never know what you’re going to get,” LS West coach Michael Schieber said. “We’re fortunate that today we came out and really got after it.”
Dale Brown was eight for eight from the field for 18 points. Gary Davis scored 15, and Trevor Gregory chipped in 12.
Pleasant Hill 62, Grandview 52
Pleasant Hill pulled off the tournament’s first upset behind a 19-point afternoon from forward Brad Smith. Matt Townsend added 13 points. Josh Shewmaker scored seven points and grabbed 10 rebounds off the bench for the Roosters.
Tyrone Taylor had a game-high 20 for the Bulldogs in the loss. Freedom Akinmoladun, Grandview’s top option in the post, battled foul trouble and played only 14 minutes.
To reach Sam McDowell, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at twitter.com/SamMcDowell11.
To reach Sam McDowell, send email to <a href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org</a>. Follow him at twitter.com/SamMcDowell11.