The Nevada Union boys basketball team had all of the answers in the first half of its preseason home game with John F. Kennedy (Richmond) Saturday.
The Miner defense clamped down on the Eagle offense, while senior guard Jon Sheets hit from all over the court to lead the hosts to a six-point halftime lead.
The second half was a different story altogether as Kennedy clipped Sheets’ wings and doubled the Miners up in a 71-56 come-from-behind win.
“Kennedy came out in the second half with a box-and-one (defense), and we just didn’t adjust very well. We didn’t block out very well on the (defensive) glass and they were getting multiple shots at the basket,” NU head coach Jeff Dellis said.
Sheets, who scored 17 of his team-high 27 points in the second quarter, was held to six points in the second half.
“(When Jon gets hot like that), he’s going to draw the other team’s best defender and it’s our responsibility to adjust,” Dellis added. “We put five guys on the court who can score, so we need to make sure we’re getting everybody involved in the offense. If we’re going to continually defer to one guy, it’s going to be a long season.”
NU had a balanced attack on offense in the first quarter with five players in the scoring column.
The second quarter was all Sheets though, as the Miners outscored the visitors 19-11 to take a six-point lead into the break.
Kennedy’s Devin Peal opened the third quarter with five straight points and Joshua Dozier drained a three-pointer as the visitors crawled back into the game.
Peal, who finished with a game-high 31 points, tied the game at 38-38 on a low-post move with 4:36 left in the quarter.
Sheets converted a three-point play on NU’s next possession, but Peal sparked a 6-0 run with another low-post bucket to give Kennedy momentum.
Jared Van Matre drained a pair of free throws and Gary Daley hit a three-pointer down the stretch to tie the game at 46-46.
D’Angelo Lewis scored in the paint on Kennedy’s next possession to put the visitors up for good.
Van Matre finished with 10 points. Daley had seven points.
NU will play in the Las Vegas Tournament Dec. 26-28.
Kennedy 17 11 22 21 ‹ 71
NU 15 19 12 10 ‹ 56
Player FG FTM FTA TP
Kennedy ‹ Peal 11 9-14 31, Van Zant 5 3-4 13, Dozier 4 0-0 10, Robinson 3 3-3 9, Henderson 1 3-6 6, Lewis 1 0-0 2.
Nevada Union ‹ Sheets 8 7-8 27, Van Matre 4 2-2 10, Daley 3 0-3 7, Smith 2 0-0 5, Bratton 1 2-2 4, Pearson 1 0-0 3.
Three-point field goals ‹ Sheets 4, Dozier 2, Daley 1, Smith 1, Pearson 1, Henderson 1. Fouled out – Smith.
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