Bridgeport erases late deficit, knocks off Boyd

By Reece Waddell | Published Tuesday, December 11, 2018.
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After Isaiah Smith jumped a pass to trim Boyd’s lead to 48-42 with under four minutes remaining, Bridgeport coach Clayton Shipley immediately burned a timeout.

The Yellowjackets had all the momentum and had led for most of the game — but that was about to change. The Bulls exited the timeout in a full-court press, leaving the Yellowjackets’ offense in disarray.

Messenger photo by Joe Duty.

Struggling to even inbound the ball, Boyd was held scoreless down the stretch as Bridgeport used a 12-0 to close out the game, escaping with a 52-48 victory at home Tuesday night.

“[The full-court press] made us play harder. It was a different intensity that we didn’t have all game,” Shipley said. “Boyd just wasn’t ready for that pressure. Our guys did a good job of switching and talking and getting those steals when we needed them.”

The Bulls forced eight turnovers in the final four minutes and 18 turnovers on the night. Boyd’s offense, which had executed well the first three quarters, was stymied in crunch time.

“They picked us up full court man and I don’t know if we scored a basket from that point on,” said Boyd coach Jacob Hines. “We absolutely let one slip away. The full-court press completely changed the game.”

Boyd opened the game on an 11-3 run. Zeb Souder knocked down several contested shots to give the Yellowjackets a lead in the first frame and finished with 13 points.

Connor Richardson led Boyd in scoring with 16. Garrett McConnell added six off the bench.

“We played extremely hard and moved the ball well at times in the first half,” Hines said. “We did a good job of moving and were able to attack some gaps off the dribble. Defensively, I thought for the most part we rebounded well.

“We’ve got to be able to move on. We can’t let it linger. That was for sure disappointing to have it end that way.”

Bridgeport responded with an 11-4 run in the second quarter, taking its first lead on a Drew Cartsens corner 3. He posted a double-double, leading all scorers with 22 points and 10 rebounds.

Messenger photo by Joe Duty.

“He’s hard to guard for anybody. He really is,” Shipley said of Carstens. “He does a good job. We’re glad to have him.”

Carstens said the Bulls were sluggish in the first three quarters, adding the full-court press gave them a much-needed jolt.

“The first half and third quarter we thought we were better than them,” Carstens said. “They hit us in the mouth and were up by eight with [four] minutes left. We just woke up and played harder than them. The whole game we thought we had it won, and that’s not how it was.”

Bridgeport improved to 6-8 overall and traveled to Pilot Point Friday. Boyd fell to 6-6 and hosted Valley View Friday.

The Bulls open District 8-4A play Jan. 11 against Krum. The Yellowjackets start District 7-3A play Tuesday at home against Brock.

While he was pleased to get a win, Shipley said Bridgeport has a long way to go before league play begins.

“That win makes us feel a little better going home, but the overall intensity has to improve,” Shipley said. “I’m still not very happy after that game, other than the fact it was a win in the win column.”

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