SILER CITY — When unbeaten Northwood took to the road last week to face county rival Jordan-Matthews, the Chargers embraced one of the basic principles outlined in Chapter One of the basketball …
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SILER CITY — When unbeaten Northwood took to the road last week to face county rival Jordan-Matthews, the Chargers embraced one of the basic principles outlined in Chapter One of the basketball manual – to ensure a victory, simply outscore your opponent every quarter.
After an eight-point Northwood advantage at the end of one period ballooned to 17 at intermission, the Chargers never let up in the second half, building as much as a 29-point lead before settling for a 66-44 non-conference win on John Phillips Court.
The triumph lifted Northwood to 4-0 for the year, whereas the Jets suffered their second setback in five outings while losing to the Chargers for the seventh straight time.
Jalen McAfee-Marion tossed in 14 points to lead the victors, who shot 52% (26-of-50) from the floor while committing 15 turnovers.
Jayden Davis totaled a game-high 17 points for J-M, which connected on 45% (15-of-33) of its field goal attempts but was hampered by 27 turnovers. Both teams grabbed 20 rebounds apiece.
“I felt like we didn’t let the game come to us, and most of our (nine) first-half turnovers resulted from a lack of concentration,” said Northwood coach Matt Brown. “But I was pleased with our balanced scoring tonight, with six players ending up with six or more points, as well as the fact we managed to draw five charge calls. While it was a nice win against a big rival, we still have a few little things to clean up, especially reaching fouls.”
Jordan-Matthews’ coach Rodney Wiley commented he felt turnovers were the difference in the contest.
“I thought we played well at the outset, but then the game got away from us midway through the first quarter when we started making some ball-handling mistakes that put us in a big hole,” Wiley said. “Northwood’s press puts a lot of pressure on you as their quickness allows them to disrupt things in the passing lanes while they did a good job keeping us away from the basket when we tried to start our half-court offense. Although we were short-handed this evening with three of our guys in street clothes, I thought Chandler Matthews and Jacquez Thompson gave us some quality minutes off the bench, while Eral Jones was really aggressive around the boards, with seven of his nine rebounds coming on the defensive end.”
After Huston Causey’s jumper from the right wing 23 seconds into the game gave the Jets their only lead of the night, Troy Arnold’s three-pointer from the right side 12 seconds later put the Chargers ahead for good, and with Arnold and McAfee-Marion combining for 11 points in the initial period the visitors from Pittsboro opened up a 15-7 advantage after one quarter.
Lanice Hedgepeth’s layup to begin the second stanza drew J-M within six before McAfee-Marion’s bank shot from the right wing and a fast break dunk by Aaron Ross provided Northwood with a double-digit lead at the 6:36 mark of the period. After the Chargers stretched their advantage to 33-13 on Alex Snively’s lane drive with eight seconds to go until intermission, Matthews closed out the half with a trey from the right side at the horn.
A Davis three-pointer from the left wing to start the third quarter got Jordan-Matthews within 14 but the Jets could edge no closer while Northwood concluded the stanza with Tucker Morgan’s layup to go up 48-30 entering the final eight minutes.
The Chargers equaled their biggest lead at 63-34 following Justin Brower’s layup with 4:08 remaining to play prior to J-M closing out the game with a 10-3 run against Northwood subs.