Posted: 10:52 p.m.
OXON HILL, Md. – JB Hoops Coleman ran into a tall and athletic opponent with a commitment to intense defense.
Led by Ayanna Patterson and RaShaya Kyle, a pair of players well over 6-foot tall who ran the floor, Always 100 Wilmont from Indiana defeated JB Hoops Coleman, 50-32, in a Pool XX opener at the USJN 17U Nationals.
Both teams are 16U squads testing themselves at the 17U national tournament being held at the National Harbor’s Gaylord Convention Center.
Patterson just received a scholarship offer from the University of Iowa even though she has not yet played in high school after just finishing eighth grade. She had four rebounds by the midway point in the first half and finished with nine points.
Kyle packed all 11 of her points into a span of less than seven minutes to end the first half and start the second.
After Cecelia Collins hit a 3-pointer to bring JB Hoops within 12-11 with 5:46 left in the half, Kyle had two three-point plays and took a defensive rebound coast-to-coast for another basket while building a 23-14 halftime lead.
Kyle then opened the second-half scoring with another three-point play. She also blocked three shots.
Always 100 supplemented the four biggest players in the game with guards that combined to hit 7-for-15 on 3-point shots.
It all proved to be too much for JB Hoops, which kept its turnovers down, but had trouble executing its offense against Always 100’s defensive pressure.
Collins led JB Hoops with nine points.
Maria Belardi added six points while sharing the team lead in rebounds (four) and assists (two).
JB Hoops had early leads of 6-3 and 8-6. Taylor Huyck and Bethany Maby created the first lead with 3-pointers less than a minute apart. Kayla Rose and Belardi had foul shots to reclaim the lead.
Always 100 went ahead to stay with 9:18 left in the half in the middle of a stretch of more than nine minutes in which it only allowed one basket.
Action continues Monday with two games for each team.
– TOM ROBINSON
Posted: 4:08 p.m.
OXON HILL, Md. – JB Hoops Coleman joins in the action at the USJN 17U Girls Nationals tonight with a 7:30 game.
Two JB Hoops teams are entered in the event at the Gaylord Convention Center at National Harbor.
JB Hoops Coleman plays in Pool XX where its first game will be against Always 100 Wilmont from Indiana.
JB Hoops Carra is done for the day after winning its opener. It returns to action with two more Pool GG games Monday against MT Elite Ducks from Massachusetts at 12:35 and Team Wall from North Carolina at 2:50.
All teams at the event are placed in six-team pools to try to advance into bracket play on Wednesday. The 2017 tournament was the first time that JB Hoops advanced a team into bracket play at USJN Nationals.
JB Hoops Coleman also plays twice Monday – at 4 p.m. against New Heights White from New York and 8:40 against Cincy Flush Fladung from Ohio.
– TOM ROBINSON
Posted: 2:27 p.m.
OXON HILL, Md. – Moriah Murray did not miss a shot while scoring 13 points and helping provide balance to a strong inside game this afternoon when JB Hoops Carra opened the Pool GG play in the USJN 17U Girls Nationals with a 50-39 victory over Rise As One from New Jersey.
Murray went 3-for-3 from 3-point range and 4-for-4 from the line in her debut at USJN Nationals.
The bulk of the JB Hoops team is back from a successful run at the tournament last year, but it has also added guards Murray, a rising freshman at Dunmore, and Rachael Rose.
Victoria Toomey added 10 points and Mackenzie Steele had 8 while supporting Leah Hodick’s team-high seven rebounds that led a 27-15 dominance on the boards.
“Victoria told me there would be a lot of (college) coaches here, but that I would be OK,” Murray said. “I was nervous coming in.”
The inside game built the lead before Murray added a late boost. Several players provided passes that got the ball into the paint or to wide-open teammates on the perimeter.
Gracie Guarino had four assists while Lauren Charlton and Morgan Haefele had three each.
Charlton had two steals and a blocked shot to lead a defense that forced 20 turnovers and held Rise As One without a field goal for a stretch of 7:49 in the second half. Murray and Steele also had two steals.
JB Hoops also held Rise As One scoreless for the first 4:39, but it trailed midway through the first half after scoring just six points in the first 8:09.
Rose hit a 3-pointer to get the offense started and Murray added one as part of a 17-3 run. Steele, who had seven points in the first half, scored five straight for a 23-12 lead with 48 seconds left in the half.
Murray said the offense began clicking better when JB Hoops got the ball to the middle more.
After converting a rebound into a three-point play, Steele took a high-low feed from Toomey, one of many examples of the interior passing game that allowed JB Hoops to break down the Rise As One defense. JB Hoops made eight lay-ups and Toomey added another basket from five feet out during the first half.
Defense put the game away.
JB Hoops forced 8 turnovers while allowing Rise As One just 5 shots in the first 10 minutes of the second half.
A streak of nine straight points built the lead to 37-22 with 6:58 left.
Rise As One used its own pressure defense to work back within nine before Murray put the win away with 10 points in the last 2:35.
“I just felt it,” Murray said. “I don’t really shoot that much, but I did this game.”
– TOM ROBINSON
TWO TEAMS IN ACTION
Posted: 1:54 p.m.
Freelance sports writer and frequent JB Hoops Blog contributor Tom Robinson is at the Gaylord Convention Center at National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Md. for the USJN 17U Girls Nationals where he will report on the progress of the JB Hoops Carra and Coleman teams.
The tournament is underway with pool play, including a 50-39 win by JB Hoops Carra over Rise As One from New Jersey in a game that ended in the last hour.
Return to this page for details on that game and much more from nationals.