Jordan guard Kaeson Mayfield hit a running jumper with 46 seconds left to give the Falcons a 47-45 lead over PAC-6 opponent East Chapel Hill. That would be enough as Jordan held off the Wildcats for a 49-45 boys basketball victory Friday night. Senior Preston Edwards added two free throws with two seconds remaining.
The victory extends the Falcons’ (8-1, 2-0 PAC-6) win streak to eight and keeps them undefeated in the conference. The loss was East Chapel Hill’s first of the season after winning five straight.
In the girls’ game, the Falcons overwhelmed the Wildcats 61-19.
Jordan’s size and pressure defense was too much for East Chapel Hill, as three players scored in double figures, led by junior center Talia Barnes double-double of 17 points and 13 rebounds.
The Falcons extended their win streak to four games, while the Wildcats have lost three straight.
Sluggish play mars boys’ half
Both offenses were anemic in the first half. Jordan led 14-7 after the first period and 19-18 at halftime, which was just fine with East coach Ray Hartsfield.
“We got the game where we wanted it, we slowed them down,” he said. “But we had 15 turnovers, and every time we turned the ball over, whisk, they were down the court for a basket. We let them get the momentum and score.”
Jonathan Runyambo gave the Wildcats their first lead at 20-19 in the third, and another basket by Kevin Gilland put the margin at three points.
But Edwards inside presence and guard Mikal Gaylord’s hot outside shooting put the Falcons up by one heading into the final period.
Jordan built an eight-point lead with four minutes left in the game before the Wildcats made their run.
“We like to dictate the pace, but they like to slow things down and are patient on offense,” Jordan coach Kim Annas said.
East closed the gap to four several times before forward Kevin Gilland hit back-to-back baskets to tie the game at 45 with 2:22 remaining.
Jordan went into a four-corner semi-stall, setting up Mayfield’s winning jumper.
Jordan’s size overpowers
The Falcons outrebounded the Wildcats 43-26 in a girls’ game that was never in contention.
Barnes scored 13 of her team’s 17 points in the first quarter for a 17-8 lead. East Chapel Hill guard Alex Mauney’s short jumper with less than three minutes left in the third period were the last points the Wildcats would score.
Jordan guard Imani Howard scored 13 points, and forward Liz Layne was one rebound short of a double-double with 12 points and nine rebounds.
“We have a young team that is slowly getting focused,” Jordan coach Ty Cox said. “They have bonded as a team and are looking to get better.”