STOVER — The Jamestown Eagles boys basketball team won their first round matchup of the Stover tournament after the team won against the Green Ridge Tigers 51-39 on Dec. 28. The Eagles improved to 4-4 with the win.
The Eagles jumped out to a quick lead as they led 15-7 after the first quarter, but their offense struggled in the second quarter as they were outscored 14-9. Nevertheless, the Eagles led 24-21 at halftime.
In the third quarter, it looked like the Eagles were about to pull away as they led 32-23 with just under four minutes to go in the quarter. The team got its lead up to double digits with the score 34-23 with just over three minutes left, but the Tigers outscored Jamestown 4-0 in the final minutes. Green Ridge ended the quarter with a steal off an inbound pass that led to a break away to make the score 34-27.
Eagles head coach Jay Thompson said he could have done a little bit of a better job helping get the team set.
“Something where we can get in good position to score a basket,” Thompson said. “I think fatigue was a little bit of a thing at the end of the third (quarter), for sure.”
A basket by Christian Snyder made it a 36-27 game to start off the final quarter. Synder would have a big fourth quarter as he scored nine of the team’s 17 points in the quarter. He also scored the first five points for the team in the quarter, as Jamestown led 39-29 with around five minutes left in the game.
Thompson said he felt the team could give Green Ridge trouble with the Eagles’ bigs.
“I think a part of every game we play is our bigs,” Thompson said. “We feel like we are pretty strong there, and I felt like that we could really give them trouble, and we did because they could not guard us and it showed and we were able to make a couple of them foul out. They struggled with us.”
Thompson said he thought the team did a lot better job of limiting turnovers than it had earlier in the season.
“We play with a lot of grit. We are just not a team that is going to put up a lot of points,” he said. “So, we have to do it on the defensive end, and we did it here against a very good basketball team.”
Green Ridge tried to cut into the Eagles’ lead but could not get it back down to under eight points, as the Eagles led 42-34 with 1:40 left to play. Free throws were a big part of the team’s scoring in the final quarter, as it went 11-19 from the line in the quarter. Throughout the game, the team was hit or miss as it went 15-25 from the line.
Thompson said free throws are more mental than physical, and the team needs to be confident at the line.
“We go through the reps every day, but they just got to have confidence when they step up to the free throw line,” Thompson said.
Christian Snyder led the Eagles with 20 points, followed by Tristan Jones with 10 points and Travis Barbour with nine points.
The team’s next game is Jan. 2 in the second round of the tournament against the number one seeded Cole Camp Bluebirds at 5:30 p.m.