Senators ride defense to win |

Senators ride defense to win

by Darrell Moody
Douglas senior guard Michael Johnson drives to the basket against Carson's Jared Rooker Tuesday night. Carson won the game, 64-50.
Jim Grant |


Sierra League

Carson 11-0 1.000 -

Bishop Manogue 8-3 .727 3

Douglas 6-5 .545 5

Galena 6-5 .545 5

Damonte Ranch 3-8 .273 8

Wooster 1-10 .091 10

High Desert League

Reno 10-1 .909 -

Spanish Springs 8-3 .727 2

McQueen 7-4 .636 3

North Valleys 3-8 .273 7

Reed 3-8 .273 7

Hug 0-11 .000 10

There’s a big reason why Carson High’s boys basketball team sits atop the Sierra League with five games left in the regular season — defense.

The Senators are stingy when it comes to giving up points, and they proved it again Tuesday night in their 64-50 win over arch rival Douglas at Morse Burley Gym.

Carson improved to 11-0 in league while the Tigers dropped to 6-5. The Tigers, who visit Wooster Friday night, are tied for third-place in the standings.

The Tigers shot 46 percent from the floor, but turned the ball over 19 times, which led to 18 Carson points.

“The kids came out and played a great defensive game,” Carson coach Carlos Mendeguia said. “I thought we allowed them too much penetration into the key, but overall we played well enough to get the job done.

“I thought the third quarter was big. We got some runouts; got in transition. When you shoot threes like they do, you’re going to get some long rebounds, and that enables you to get some runouts and get into transition.”

Carson, which led 31-21 at the half, held the Tigers to just two field goals in the third quarter. The first came on Sam Johnson’s 3-pointer with 5:38 left and the second came on a Dalton Davis field goal with 2:03 remaining.

“I don’t think there was a turning point,” Douglas coach Corey Thacker said. “Carson is a good team. They played well, and they played well in transition. When you play defense like they do, there is no turning point in the game. They got in transition and got some easy baskets. They only had two 3-pointers, so that means 58 points came on free throws or in the key. We have to do a better job defensively. On offense we just didn’t execute.”

The Senators went on a 6-3 surge to start the second half, four points coming from Asa Carter (19 points) and two from Jayden DeJoseph (14 points) to make it 37-23. A 13-3 run later in the period upped the lead to 52-31. Jace Keema scored five of his seven in that stretch while DeJoseph banged home a 3-pointer. After Tanner Williams drained a free throw, Cody Azevedo knocked down a free toss and Keema added two more points to make it 55-32 at the end of the quarter.

The second quarter was also huge for the Senators, quite possibly bigger than the third.

The Senators went on a 13-2 run in the first five minutes of the period to take a 27-17 lead, wiping out Douglas’ 15-14 first-quarter advantage. DeJoseph and Rooker scored twice, while Tez Allen (11 points) added a hoop and Carter three free throws. The Tigers went 1-for-5 and turned the ball over several times during that stretch.

Michael Johnson led the Tigers offensively with 14 points, while Sam Johnson finished with nine.

The Tigers play three of their final regular season league games at home — against Galena, Manogue and Carson. Douglas only trails Bishop Manogue by two games for second-place and a home court berth for the first round of the Northern Divsion I Region Tournament on Feb. 17.

“It depends on which team shows up,” Thacker said when asked if he thinks his team could get up to second-place.