Jordan sweeps home basketball twinbill from Riverside
Without a starter taller than 6-foot-2, the Jordan Falcons have to make up for the lack of height in other areas.
Friday against Riverside, Jordan’s guards more than overcame any height differential. Josh Thompson and Mike Lee were dominant on both ends of their home court as the Falcons whipped the Pirates 69-56.
Thompson scored 20 points and had five assists, while Lee had nine points, five assists and four steals as the two juniors controlled the game for Jordan (11-5, 2-1 PAC-6).
“Mike and Josh are really tough players,” Jordan coach Kim Annas said. “They complement each other well. Hopefully, they’ll continue to get better and improve this year and get even better next year as seniors.”
Against Riverside (1-10, 0-3), Thompson and Lee were able to break down their defenders and get to the lane on dribble penetration. Jordan scored 42 points in the paint, getting buckets on the fastbreak or on passes from teammates.
“We just try to go,” Thompson said. “We just take what the defense gives us.”
Annas said his team would rather pass the ball inside, but with quick guards like Thompson and Lee getting to the lane, the Falcons will take it.
“We would rather pass more than dribble, but they gave us a chance to get to the basket, so our guys took advantage of it,” Annas said.
What happened on the defensive end for the Pirates? Breakdowns, pure and simple.
“They’re guards are very strong,” Riverside coach Brian Strickland said. “We were trying to get up and match that intensity tonight and pressure the ball. I felt like their guards responded well. They were able to get to the basket. When you cause rotation and help, and one guy does it and the other guy doesn’t, then it turns into layups, and that’s what they were able to get, especially toward the end.”
Plus, Riverside didn’t go a good job handling the ball. The Pirates shot 50 percent from the floor (23 of 46) but committed 22 turnovers.
“We have to try to do something on defense, (get) out in the passing lanes,” Annas said. “We have to do something to try to pressure the ball because we don’t have the size. We can’t let a team do what they want with the ball.”
Riverside’s Markeise Crutchfield was a beast on the inside, scoring 20 points and grabbing 14 rebounds.
“He’s a big boy, and there’s not many people who are going to move him,” Strickland said. “When he goes after it, not many people are going to keep him off the boards. He’s getting them on both ends, too.”
His two consecutive buckets ended an 8-0 run that cut the lead to 31-27 late in the first half, but Jordan responded with three straight layups, two in the first half and one in the third quarter, to push the lead back to 10.
Riverside got within eight, 57-49, on another Crutchfield basket, but Mike Spears (10 points) scored on an inbound play, Thompson made a driving bucket and a fastbreak layup, and Julian Reese made a free throw to put the game out of reach.
The Pirates don’t have time to sulk after their third conference loss in a row, as they host Voyager Academy today at 7 p.m. in the MLK Classic.
“Tomorrow’s a new day,” Strickland said. “I know one thing: We’re not going to hold our heads down. We’re going to come out (today) and get right back after it.”
Jordan (8-7, 2-1 PAC-6) grabbed a share of first place in the girls game with Riverside, topping the 10-5, 2-1 Pirates 42-35 as Salita Greene led the way with 13 points, 13 rebounds and five blocked shots.
JORDAN 69, RIVERSIDE 56
Riverside |12 |15 |10 |19 — 56
Jordan |18 |17 |15 |19 — 69
RIVERSIDE — Markiese Crutchfield 20, Joey Cabrera 12, Justin Johnson 6, Dexter McCrae 4, Terrence Suitt 4, , C.J. Carpenter 3, Jareel Stewart 3, Eric Peaks Jr. 2, Torren Wynn 2.
JORDAN — Josh Thompson 20, Arthur Reese 13, Mike Spears 10, Mike Lee 9, Julian Reese 5, Chris Braswell 4, Tyreek Frye 3, Darius Richmond 2, Marshall Thompson 2, Jajuan Lyons 1.
3-point goals—Riverside 4 (Cabrera 2, Johnson 1, Carpenter 1); Jordan 3 (Thompson 1, Lee 1, Reese 1). Total fouls—Riverside 16, Jordan 17.
Records—Riverside 7-10, 0-3 PAC-6; Jordan 11-5, 2-1.
JORDAN 42, RIVERSIDE 35
Riverside |8 |8 |13 |6 — 35
Jordan |14 |5 |9 |14 — 42
RIVERSIDE — Moné Jones 8, Zaria Rogers 7, Atlanta Woodall 7, Yakima Clifton 6, Andrea-Anna Poole 5, Kiara Jacobs 2.
JORDAN — Salita Green 13, Lizz Layne 8, Millicent Blivin 6, Rachel Ruderman 6, A’Sonté Rochell 6, Jazmyne Norwood 3.
3-point goals—Riverside 3 (Clifton 2, Poole 1); Jordan 5 (Norwood 1, Blivin 1, Rochelle 1, Ruderman 1, Greene 1). Total fouls—Riverside 15, Jordan 12.
Records—Riverside 10-5, 2-1 PAC-6 4-A; Jordan 8-7, 2-1 PAC-6.