Jayhawks Suffer Setback Vs. ECC

By Jim Riggs


The Jamestown Community College Jayhawks and Erie CC Kats had a battle of streaks in NJCAA Region 3 Division II men’s basketball on Tuesday night. Erie had more scoring streaks and ended up with a 95-77 victory.

”It was a game of runs and I thought in the first half it was because of their press,” JCC coach Mike Cordovano said. ”We either scored on their press or we turned it over into a layup against their press. There was very little in between.”

He added, ”We didn’t have the discipline. Their aggressive play make us play timid and against that press we were timid. I don’t want to say we were afraid, we were timid and we didn’t have the confidence in doing very much. That led to turnovers and a lot of dunks.”

And the result was JCC saw its winning streak end at four. The Jayhawks are 6-8 overall and 0-1 in Region 3 Division II while Erie is 10-5 and 2-0.

JCC hadn’t played since Dec. 17 and a game on Jan. 7 was postponed.

”That had something to do with it,” Cordovano said. ”Those guys played two games. I knew we’d have a little rust on us because we hadn’t played in almost a month.”

Erie jumped out to a 12-4 lead after four minutes of play, but JCC responded was eight unanswered points to tie the game. The Kats counterpunched with a 14-3 run to open up a 13-point advantage, 28-15, with 10 minutes left in the first half.

Later, Erie had a 13-2 streak that led to a 20-point lead with a minute left. Fortunately for JCC, Tyreek Jewell scored the last five points of that half to cut the Kats’ lead to 47-32 at halftime.

Jewell had scored JCC’s last 13 points in the half as he finished the opening 20 minutes with 20 points.

”I thought Tyreek played exceptionally well tonight and he wasn’t timid,” Cordovano said. ”He kind of put his team on his back, but I don’t think the other kids were ready for a game like that. We have not played a team like that, that plays that hard and that aggressive.”

In the second half, the Jayhawks managed to pull within eight with 15 minutes left. And they kept staying within striking distance of 10 to 12 points. Then Erie put the game away by outscoring JCC, 23-10, in the final seven minutes.

”Again, it’s all about that press,” Cordovano said. ”It doesn’t go away and they made us turn it over.”

Jewell finished with a game-high 32 points and Jerome Jackson had 18 for JCC.

Center Ohndo Smith of the Jayhawks had 10 points and played most of the final 12 minutes with four fouls. At times he was even bringing the ball upcourt and looked like a 6-foot-8, 270-pound point guard.

”O is coming and as he gains fitness his game just blossoms because he’s got a lot of skills,” Cordovano said. ”He hurts us defensively when he gets tired and he played tired. But he’s coming. He’s better than in the fall semester.”

Fabian MacDonald led Erie with 26 points, Dashawn King had 17, Valworth Jones 15 and Kareem Sulaiman 12.

The next action for the Jayhawks is on Thursday at 8 p.m., in a Region 3 Division II game at Monroe CC.

ERIE (95)

King 6 2-3 14, Kone 4 0-1 9, McDonald 9 3-3 26, Alade 1 0-0 2, Osuji 1 3-4 5, Sulaiman 6 0-1 12, Ayuso 3 0-0 8, Heckstall 1 0-0 3, Jones 2 8-9 12, DJackson 2 0-0 4, Totals 35 16-21 95.

JCC (77)

KJackson 1 0-0 2, JJackson 4 4-5 18, Reyes 2 0-0 4, Peck 0 0-0 0, Jewell 13 6-8 32, Williams 4 1-2 9, Roach 0 0-0 0, Smith 5 0-0 10, Pena 0 2-2 2, Totals 30 13-18 77.

Halftime-Erie 47, JCC 32. 3-point goals-Kone, MacDonald 5, Ayuos 2, Heckstall, Jjackson 4. Total fouls-Erie 19, JCC 18. Fouled out-Ayuso. Technical-Osuji.