Jeff has too many 'options' for Cubs
34-7 run over final 10 minutes of 1st half keys 80-54 Madison loss
Monday, December 10, 2012 10:00 AM
Going into Saturday's boys Hoosier Hills Conference basketball showdown with defending conference champion Jeffersonville, Madison coach Pat King knew the Cubs had to find a way to contain the Red Devils' high scoring swingman Darryl Baker.
BAKER’S 19: Jeffersonville’s Darryl Baker (23) elevates over Madison’s Ryan Thurston for a jumpshot during the Red Devils’ 80-54 win Saturday at Salm Gym. Baker, who is being recruited by several Division I colleges, scored 19 points in the win despite a Madison box and chaser — a job well-done according to the Cubs. Madison entered the game with a goal of holding Baker under 20. (Staff photo by Mark Campbell)
But unfortunately for Madison, even with that accomplished the unbeaten Red Devils had more than enough firepower to roll to an 80-54 win over the Cubs at Connor K. Salm Gymnasium.
Madison employed a box-and-one defense - the chaser duties going to senior forward Ryan Thurston - to "hold" NCAA Division I recruit Baker to 19 points. The rest of the Red Devils found enough holes in the zone for junior guard Keenan Williams to score 20 and sophomore guard Myles Harvey to net 14.
"Thurston guarded him most of the night and I thought he did a very good job of taking away his first option," King said of Baker. "But Harvey and (Drew) Ellis and Williams are all good shooters, too, and they have so much quickness that they can all take you off the dribble."
The Cubs looked like they would give the Red Devils a game of it in the early going when Thurston opened the scoring with a quick 3-pointer and Madison was still within a bucket at 15-13 with 2:00 left in the opening quarter - all that despite Baker scoring six points in the early going including a steal and dunk with 3:07 left that made it 15-7 Jeff.
"One thing we were hoping for was to weather that first four or five minutes - that period where a team like Jeff can really ambush you - and I thought we did a decent job of doing that," King said. "I don't know if we got tired after that or what. We were doing what we wanted to do but we just weren't executing enough. But that's something that is always difficult when you're playing a team like that."
Over the remainder of the first quarter Jeff outscored Madison 11-1 and then completed King's feared ambush 23-6 in the second period to take a 43-20 lead into halftime.
Madison opened the third quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers out of the right corner by Thurston to close the gap to 47-26 and Thurston later swished a trio of free throws when he was fouled from beyond the arc by Jeff's Jacquari Chandler. But in the end, Madison's 3-point shooting and big night at the free throw line were not enough to keep pace with Jeff's high-octane offense.
"We tried to drive on them but we just couldn't get to the corners because they are so quick," King said. "We've got quick kids but their level of quickness is just on another level."
Madison ended the game with nine 3-pointers and 15-of-22 shooting out the foul line to go with just six 2-pointers. Meanwhile, Jeff made 29 2-pointers - many on slashes to the basket and lay-ups - to just five 3-pointers and 7-of-9 free throws.
"Our coaches were talking at halftime and noted that if we hadn't hit the 3's in the first half it would have been really ugly," King said. "We're shooting the ball better than we have been but we've still got to be able to break somebody down and get to the basket. Matt Woolard is a good scorer inside and he got very few looks and very few shots tonight. We can't have that."
Landon Perry led the Cubs with a game-high 22 points while Thurston added 14 as the trio hit a combined seven 3-pointers. Tanner Sauley came off the bench to score seven while the rest of the Cubs managed only 11 points total.
Nick Macon, Madison's starting point guard who missed a couple of games recently for medical reasons before coming off the bench in Friday's win over South Dearborn, was back in the Cubs' starting lineup against Jeff. His speed proved essential against the Red Devil defense but his stamina was an issue, too.
"He was still a little rusty but we expect that," King said of Macon. "We tried to limit him to three- or four-minute stretches last night and five or six tonight. But we needed him in there with the constant pressure Jeff puts on you. Having Willie (Huffman) and Nick in there really helped take a lot of the pressure off Landon and Ryan."
For the second consecutive night King started and went long stretches with the smaller lineup he used late in Madison's sectional loss to Lawrenceburg last year - a lineup that almost rallied for a win over a good Tigers team.
"It's another option for us. Last year we used it in the sectional out of desperation," King said. "We want to develop that lineup so that it will be an option for us this year."
The Cubs will be back in action Friday night against another strong team in the Hoosier Hills Conference when Madison makes the long trek to Bedford North Lawrence.
"It doesn't get easier but Bedford is a different kind of team than Jeff," King said of the Stars, now 3-3 overall and 0-1 in the HHC. "While Jeff is quick and athletic Bedford will be big and physical."
The Cubs, now 2-3, will be trying to get their first HHC win in three starts. It might be a tall order but one thing King knows is that his team will give everything it has just as it did against Jeff.
Things will get significantly tougher for Jeff, too, as the Red Devils put their unbeaten season on the line Tuesday at Louisville Ballard, the top-ranked team in Kentucky and No. 24 nationwide.
SATURDAY'S BOYS GAME
JEFFERSONVILLE 80, MADISON 54
JEFFERSONVILLE 26 17 19 18 - 80
MADISON 14 6 21 13 - 54
JEFFERSONVILLE (3-0, 2-0 HHC) - (g)Williams 20, (g)Baker 19, (g)Harvey 14, White 7, (g)Ellis 5, (g)Chandler 4, Shackleford 4, Kinnaird 3, Kwitonda 2, Major 2, Dale 0, T. Avery 0.
MADISON (2-3, 0-2 HHC) - (g)Perry 22, (f)Thurston 14, Sauley 7, (g)Macon 3, (g)Huffman 2, (f)Woolard 2, Manaugh 2, Vaughn 2, King 0, Wattenbarger 0.
3-Point Goals - Jeffersonville 5 (Harvey 2, Ellis 1, White 1, Williams 1), Madison 9 (Perry 4, Thurston 3, Macon 1, Sauley 1). Free Throws - Jeffersonville 7-9 (77.8%), Madison 15-22 (68.1%). Team Fouls - Jeffersonville 18, Madison 11. Fouled Out - None. Next Game - Jeffersonville hosts Louisville (Ky.) Ballard Tuesday, Madison visits Bedford North Lawrence Friday.