The Transylvania Times -

Knights' Defensive Pressure Stifles Blue Devils In Opener


November 20, 2017

Jeremiah Reed

Sophomore Jakari Thompson drives to the basket during the first half of Brevard's season opener last Thursday.

It wasn't the start to the season the Brevard Blue Devils were looking for as the North Henderson Knights used ruthless defensive pressure and dominant play on the interior on the way to a 78-42 victory last Thursday.

It was back-and-forth in the first quarter, as Brevard took the lead off a basket from Carter McCracken before North responded with a basket on their end.

Breylan Owens scored two off an offensive rebound and putback to put Brevard back ahead 6-5 before the Knights moved back in front 7-6 with just over three minutes in the first quarter.

North rattled off six straight points to go up by seven.

The Knights began administering full-court pressure, but Brevard used long outlet passes to beat the press and score some easy layups.

At the end of the first quarter, the Knights held an 18-11 lead.

North's perimeter defense hounded Brevard's guards in the second quarter and their full-court pressure became more effective.

A nice drive and finish from Jakari Thompson made it 20-13, and another bucket from Aiden Green cut the lead to 21-16 with 3:30 to play in the first half.

From there, things fell apart for the Blue Devils.

Two quick turnovers led to a 26-17 lead for North and forced a Brevard timeout.

But the Blue Devils still couldn't handle the pressure coming out of the break and three more turnovers led to the Knights taking a 29-17 lead with just over a minute left before halftime.

North kept the rally going, eventually taking a 37-20 lead as the teams entered the locker room.

Brevard tried to get back into the fight early in the third quarter behind a three-pointer from Sammy Bradley and a layup from Owens that cut the lead to 14.

But North responded with a run of their own to retake a 19-point lead that later grew to 26 points as the Knights led 53-27 with just over two minutes to play in the third quarter.

Jeremiah Reed

Breylan Owens get hacked hard across the arm as he drives the lane for a layup attempt in the fourth quarter.

North continued to pile it on, leading by as many as 40 points in the final quarter.

In total, the Knights outscored Brevard 41-22 in the second half and cruised the rest of the way to the win.

Three Knights finished in double figures for scoring on the night, but ball security was the story of the game as North forced 22 turnovers while committing just eight.

North also had a big night on the glass, finishing with 35 total rebounds, including 10 on the offensive glass.

Brevard's roster was hampered a bit as senior Terrance Johnson and junior Dylan Troyer were on the bench for the duration of the game.

The Blue Devils looked to rebound by hosting Blue Ridge on Monday and host Enka on Tuesday.


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