Patriots are whom ‘four-tune’ favors

 

SHENANDOAH JUNCTION — In winning all but four games this season, Washington usually employs a turnover-causing pressure defense. In losing all but four games this season, Jefferson usually succumbs to a turnover-causing pressure defense.

The molds haven’t been broken.

Nothing changed last Friday when Washington slammed the Cougars by 46 points, easily winning, 80-34.

Jefferson’s Kalen Nehler tries to defend Washington’s Kendell Smith in the Patriots’ win.

Jefferson’s Kalen Nehler tries to defend Washington’s Kendell Smith in the Patriots’ win.

Washington elevated its record to 15-4 and Jefferson fell to 4-16 when it lost by more points than it scored. The Patriots clinched the second seed and a home game vs. Hedgesville in the upcoming Sectional tournament, while Jefferson wil be the last-seeded team in the same event and will play on the road at Musselman in a first-round Sectional game.

Washington’s fullcourt pressure had it off to an uncomplicated 16-5 lead after a quarter. It was an unceremonial 44-18 Washington lead at the half.

The Patriots kept it simple. Steal the ball. Shoot a layup. Cause another turnover. Let Maleke Jones throw in a long three-pointer. Outscore the Cougars, 36-16, in the second half. Leave the gym with three games left against Berkeley Springs, Silver Oak Academy, and Jefferson again to close out a probable 18-4 regular season record and prepare for an all-important game in the Sectional vs. Hedgesville.

The Washington starters were 7-for-10 from the foul line, a place where it must excel in order to defeat Hedgesville.

Washington spread most of its scoring between Maleke Jones (16 points), Keldon Bell (16), Kendell Smith (14), Christian Coles (9) and Dominique Newman (8 points).

Washington’s 51 rebounds dwarfed Jefferson’s 32 rebounds. But it was Jefferson’s 29 turnovers that amounted to the most incriminating statistic of the Senior Night at Jefferson High.

Pressure defense was the usual script.

Washington’s enormous win was the usual finish.

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