Northern needed a big night from Kendrell Barkley and it got it as he scored a career-high 35 points to lead the Knights to a 78-76 overtime win that clinched the PAC-6 regular season.
Barkley, whose previous career high of 30 points also came against Jordan, did most of his damage on the inside. He also grabbed 16 rebounds and dished out seven assists.
“We played great defense and got everybody involved,” Barkley said. “They beat us the last time out our house so we had some payback to do. I just tried to get everyone involved.”
Jordan won the first matchup between the two teams 76-69 at Northern.
Jordan coach Kim Annas said he expected another tight contest against Northern.
“It was a great game between two great high school teams,” Annas said. “Northern has a great team and we’ve got a lot of good players. This was a great game to be a part of.”
Northern (21-2, 8-1 PAC-6) earned its first regular-season title for fifth-year Knights coach Ronnie Russell.
“It was one of our goals from the beginning of the season,” Russell said. “It’s nice for the guys.”
After being tied 66-66 at the end of regulation, Northern scored the first eight points of overtime and Jordan couldn’t find its shooting touch.
Mike Lee (19 points) hit a 3 from the left wing to finally break the Jordan scoring drought to make it 74-79. He later hit a pair of free throws to cut Northern’s lead to 76-73. But the Falcons got no closer until Lee hit another 3 as time expired to set the final margin.
Jordan couldn’t put the game away in regulation and needed a miraculous 3-pointer from Mike Spears in the left corner to force overtime. Barkley gave Northern a 64-63 lead with a pair of made free throws with 25.1 seconds left and Ricky Council added two more points at the line with 15.5 remaining.
The Falcons rushed the ball up the court and had difficulty getting it into the hands of their long-range shooters. But it finally ended up in Spears’ hands and he was able to get off a good shot that tied the game.
Unfortunately for the Falcons, the excitement and momentum didn’t carry over to overtime.
Russell told his team during the break that he felt they were in a better position than Jordan even though they were starting from scratch. It showed as the Knights were able to get out into transition for some easy baskets off Jordan’s misses.
“I told them it was a new game and it was time to get busy,” Russell said. “Amd they did.”
Annas said Northern’s transition game in overtime was the difference.
“We missed some chip shots in and they were able to take them back up the floor for some easy baskets,” Annas said. “They’re very good in transition and we had to calm down. Once we calmed down, I thought we played really well.”
Jordan (15-7, 6-3) closes out its regular season against East Chapel Hill on Friday.
In the girls’ game, Salita Green scored 21 points to lead Jordan, while freshman Rachel Rudeman added 18. Green hit a pair of 3s, while Rudeman made three from behind the arc for the Falcons (13-8, 7-2), who locked up the number two spot in the PAC-6.
NORTHERN 78, JORDAN 76, OT
NORTHERN—Jacquan Harris 7, Kentrell Barkley 35, Ricky Council 17, Emmett Tilley 5, Avion Jordan 5, Timothy Crutchfield 9.
J0RDAN—Josh Thompson 14, Mike Lee 19, Tyreek Frye 16, Julian Reese 7, Mike Spears 5, Arthur Reese 13, Chris Braswell 2.
Northern 15 21 14 16 12—78
Jordan 19 15 1319 10—76
3-Point goals—Northern 3 (Council 2, Crutchfield), Jordan 8 (Thompson 3, Lee 3, Spears, A.Reese). Rebounds—Northern 28 (Barkley 16), Jordan 35 (A.Reese 8). Assists—Northern 19 (Barkley 7), Jordan 12 (Lee 6).
Records—Northern 21-2, 8-1 PAC-6 4-A; Jordan 15-7, 6-3 PAC-6.
JORDAN 53, NORTHERN 38
NORTHERN—Jaz’Quisa Chavis 4, Madison Taylor 7, Kolby Snipes 8, Rhianna Council 6, Lauren Carroll 3, Megan Pleasants 6, Remy Simmons 4 J0RDAN—Jazmyne Norwood 2, A’Sonte Rochelle 7, Melony Corbett 3, Chantille Green 2, Rachel Rudeman 18, Salita Green 21.
Northern 8 3 7 20—38
Jordan 9 26 9 9—53
3-Point goals—Northern 1 (Taylor), Jordan 5 (Rudeman 3, S.Green 2). Rebounds—Jordan 31 (S.Green 16). Assists—Jordan 7 (Norwood 3).
Records—Northern 10-10, 4-5 PAC-6 4-A; Jordan 13-8, 7-2 PAC-6.