Ardrey Kell High got stops when they were needed most.
The Knights forced a pair of turnovers in the final 64 seconds in their 55-51 win against Marvin Ridge Tuesday in the season opener for both teams. Clinging to a 53-51 advantage, Ardrey Kell connected on 2-of-5 free throws during that stretch but it was enough to keep the Mavericks at bay.
“We got some big defensive stops and we got some big rebounds,” Ardrey Kell (1-0) coach Mike Craft said. “We made it hard on ourselves because we didn’t hit our free throws, but that’s game situations and those guys will get better at that. It was a great team win.”
Jerod Carrier paced Ardrey Kell with 20 points, including 12 in the second half, while Harper Hendricks added 13 and David Kasangany chipped in 10. Josh Cardwell led Marvin Ridge (0-1) with 19 points, followed by Cameron Jones with 15 and Bryce Canohan with 10.
“We knew Marvin Ridge had a good team coming back, especially (Jones),” Craft said. “He really hurt us in the first half, but I think in the second half, we did a better job. He missed some easy ones, so you can’t credit our defense for that, but maybe he got tired. I thought we showed some perseverance and we were able to win down the stretch.”
Neither team led by more than seven points, although Ardrey Kell led throughout the second half. Marvin Ridge pulled to within two points three times in the fourth quarter, but the Knights found ways to stay in front.
“Very good game and that will help us as we move forward,” Craft said.”
Marvin Ridge 14 15 11 11-51
Ardrey Kell 16 15 14 10-55
Marvin Ridge – Josh Cardwell 19, Cameron Jones 15, Bryce Carnohan 10, Brown 3, Sullivan 2, Vogt 2.
Ardrey Kell – Jerod Carrier 20, Harper Hendricks 13, David Kasangamy 10, Morgan 8, Turnbow 4.