Stallions win fourth straight
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Despite the defense of Madera’s Arthur Flores (1), Madera South’s Junior Segura shoots for one of his four 3-pointers while scoring a game-high 20 points in the Stallions’ victory Friday.
After losing two games to the Madera Coyotes boys basketball team in 2015, the Madera South Stallions have won the last four meetings, including last week’s victory, by an average of 15 points.
The Stallions improved the average with a 70-54 victory Friday night, outscoring Madera 39-26 in the first half.
“When you make shots, it makes it easy,” Madera South head coach Jody Sharp said.
The Stallions made nine 3-pointers and had three players in double-figures, led by sharpshooter Junior Segura with 20 points. He hit four 3-pointers and also had four rebounds.
Hassan Bolden scored 18 points with six rebounds and Jonah Johnson added 12 points.
Despite, the win, Sharp was frustrated with his team settling for the 3-pointer. His team shot 38 percent with 24 shots beyond the arc.
“It’s real frustrating you get the ball down low and we don’t finish and draw a foul,” Sharp said. “Jonah catches the ball and throws it out. There’s nobody around him. Things like that, you have to finish and draw a foul. You just can’t live and die by the three. We have a tendency to do that.”
The Coyotes had three players score in double figures, led by 14 points from Travon Ray. K’Veon Jones and Mark Cardoza scored 10 points each and combined for 13 rebounds.
However, the Coyotes only made six field goals in the second half and made only three 3-pointers the entire game.
“They are a good team,” Madera head coach Mike Hawkins said. “We were really hurt defensively. They got really good looks. We had trouble stopping penetration in the middle and that opened a lot of easier shots for them and they got the free throw line. If we can’t make them take bad shots and we have a night where we’re not shooting well, we’re going to struggle."
Madera was also hurt when starting center Michael Hartley went down early in the first quarter to a leg injury.
“Michael’s injury hurt us with our rotation and defense."
Bolden opened the scoring with a layup, but Jones followed with an offensive putback. Johnson gave the Stallions the lead with a 3-point play.
Jones cut the lead to one with a layup, but Segura answered with a 3-pointer.
The Coyotes tied the game with layups from Cardoza and Gabriel Villegas. However, another Segura 3-pointer gave the Stallions the lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
Villegas hit another bucket to cut the lead to one, but the Stallions broke away with a 7-0 run. Hakeem Primes started the run with a bucket. Johnson made a layup and Andre Johnson hit a 3-pointer for an 18-10 lead.
After Madera’s Cameron Vaughn made a layup, Madera South’s Kingsley Thomas put back a miss for a 20-12 Madera South lead.
Madera closed the first quarter with buckets from Jones and Cardoza to cut the lead to four.
Segura quickly opened the lead to eight with back-to-back buckets. After a Cardoza layup, Segura added a free throw. Bolden then hit a 3-pointer and sank two free throws to get the lead to 12.
Jones stopped the run with a pull-up 12 footer and Ray hit a 3-pointer to cut the lead to 30-23.
Madera South came back with three 3-pointers. Primes and Johnson hit back-to-back 3-pointers and Bolden converted a 3-point play to answer two Ray free throws to get the lead to 14. A free throw from Michael Green cut the Stallions lead to 39-26 at the half.
Jones opened the second half with two free throws, but Bolden answered with a layup. Bolden made a free throw, but Madera’s Arthur Flores hit a 3-pointer to get the lead down to 11.
Segura made a layup and Green made one for the Coyotes. After Thomas made a free throw, Ray hit a jumper to cut the lead to 10.
Segura got the lead back to 13 with a 3-pointer. Ray followed with two free throws, but Ralph White made a layup for the Stallions.
Madera answered again with two free throws from Raeshaun Hill.
However, Madera South’s Segura hit another 3-pointer and Amire Green added a layup for a 55-39 Stallions’ lead.
Ray hit three free throws and Vaughn made another for a 55-43 Madera South lead heading into the fourth quarter.
Johnson opened the quarter with a layup, but Flores hit a 3-pointer and Green scored on a drive to get within nine.
“They got close because we weren’t executing, guys going too fast and not being fundamentally sound and doing things they can’t do with the basketball,” Sharp said. “They shot a lot of free throws. You can’t give those kinds of things up. They did a great job. They battled. I told my kids they are going to battle. I told them they had to adjust to that. They aren’t going to stop playing and keep playing hard. We missed so many things. We were sloppy and lazy with the basketball.”
Madera South committed 10 turnovers in the second half compared to just two in the first half.
Segura got the lead back to double figures with a 3-pointer. Ray came back with a jumper, but David Thomas made a layup to get the lead to 12.
After more than two minutes without any scoring, Jonah Johnson tipped in a miss for a 64-50 lead.
Cardoza put back a miss, but Madera South’s Tank Dickson countered with two free throws. Bolden made a layup and sank two more free throws for a 6-0 run to get the lead to 18.
Cardoza made two free throws for the 70-54 final.
Madera South hosts Bullard-Fresno and Madera hosts Sanger tonight with both games tipping off at 6:30 p.m.