Basketball: Long-distance relief

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David Minton/DRC
Denton's Dolen Nicholson (42) gets a ball to the face after a blocked shot by Wichita Falls Rider's Darius Barrett (10), Tuesday, January 14, 2014, in Denton.
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Denton boys beat Rider with timely 3-point shooting

Wichita Falls Rider had size on its side; Denton had speed and quickness. And when all was said and done Tuesday, the host Broncos were forced out of their comfort zone into a half-court offense.

Despite its offense not getting out into transition, Denton outlasted the Raiders with better outside shooting than in its recent games and claimed a 63-54 victory.

Adarian Harris led the Broncos with 21 points.

“AD [Harris] did a tremendous job and the guys on the perimeter did a great job knocking down timely 3s,” Denton coach Harold Jackson said. “I thought each one they knocked down was a 3 that kept the gap wide between us and them.”

The Broncos got themselves into early foul trouble, which forced them to back away from their tight defensive coverage, but Jackson said he was proud of the way his team responded to the change of pace.

“In order for us to play defense in the way that we teach defense, there has to be a little contact,” Jackson said. “The game was called close, so that kind of took us out of our aggression early with guys in foul trouble. So then we had to find other ways to try to force tempo. We really had to work tonight for scoring opportunities.”

The game was tied at 23 late in the second quarter when Denton first grasped control of the game.

A 6-0 run gave the Broncos (7-9, 5-1 district) the lead, but the Raiders were able to come up with a steal and dunk with time expiring to make the halftime score 31-27.

The Raiders hit the first shot of the second half, but Denton went on a 9-0 run to claim its biggest lead at 40-29.

Late in the third quarter and into the fourth, Wichita Falls (12-10, 2-4) rallied with its longest scoring stretch of the night with a 9-0 run to get itself within 47-43, but Denton answered with a 6-0 run and hit its free throws down the stretch.

“We hadn’t had to play a game of that nature in district,” Jackson said. “It’s been a long time since we played a close game. When you have a young, inexperienced team and you’ve been able to play a close game, we can build on that experience. We don’t always have to win by double digits or play fast-break basketball. Sometimes we may have to slow it down and execute in the half-court to be successful.”

Girls

Wichita Falls Rider 49, Denton 42

Offensive weakness again was the story for the Lady Broncos.

It’s not that they weren’t getting good looks; they just couldn’t bury the shots when they needed to. When they got opportunities at the free-throw line, they were 5-of-18.

Jada Catlin had 12 points to lead the Lady Broncos, while Ashley Reid of Rider led all scorers with 16.

Despite the fact that it was facing the top team in the district in Rider (19-6, 7-1), Denton (8-11, 2-6) had a chance and was within five points, down 36-31.

The Lady Raiders went on a 10-0 to fend off the Lady Broncos.

“They are leading the league, and here we are right in the ballgame, but it’s those little things that really hurt you,” Denton coach Dennis Krishka said. “First of all, we got ourselves in some foul trouble in the first half so we had to go with a much different lineup. We had to take a couple of our best rebounders out of the mix, and they [the Lady Raiders] hurt us on the boards. That kept them in the lead.

“Our initial plan was to make them work on the defensive end and I thought we wore them down a little bit, but it still comes down to converting and we didn’t get it done again.”

PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873 and via Twitter at @PatrickHayslip.

Boys

Denton 63, Wichita Falls Rider 54

Wichita Falls Rider

15

12

13

14

54

Denton

14

17

16

16

63

Rider (12-10, 2-4) — TJ Vasher 17, Max Portman 8, Cody Taylor 7, Darius Barrett 6, Alec Lemmon 6, Stephen Barrett 5, Booky Stevenson 3, Geoffrey Gerrard 2.

Denton (7-9, 5-1) — Adarian Harris 22, Keyandre Hearvey 14, Deamonte Hughes 12, Emerson Espinoza 7, Curtis Stevenson 4, Lamonte Moss 2, Kobe Johnson 2.

Girls

Wichita Falls Rider 49, Denton 42

Wichita Falls Rider

8

14

10

17

49

Denton

6

10

9

17

42

Rider (19-6, 7-1) — Ashley Reid 16, Mercedes Brooks 10, Skye Catletti 9, Emily Shaver 5, Brea Harrison 5, Airielle Wise 3, Nicole Linn 1.

Denton (8-11, 2-6) — Jada Catlin 12, April Pena 9, Mariah Seastrunk 9, Taylor Allison 8, Alex Mcintosh 4.


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