WATERLOO — In a pass-fail grade system, Waterloo East boys’ basketball coach Steve McGraw grudgingly gave it a pass.

But the message to his Trojan basketball team following its 77-68 win over Cedar Rapids Jefferson Tuesday in Mississippi Valley Conference action was the standard must continue to rise.

Tyrese Nickelson scored 27 points as East (3-1) bounced back from a 94-62 loss to Waterloo West Friday with an effort that at times McGraw really liked and at others, not so much.

“We have a long way to go,” McGraw said. “We aren’t a good basketball team right now. We are getting better.”

Jefferson, behind the hot hand of Willie Guy III, led most of the first half. Guy had 11 in the first quarter, including three 3-pointers. But East just wouldn’t give in.

Jefferson maintained the lead for much of the second quarter before the Trojans played perhaps their best stretch of basketball. Ramon Harrington hit a 3-pointer to tie the game at 32-all with 2:18 left, and East closed the half on a 7-0 run to lead 36-32 at the half.

“We played better defense,” McGraw said. “Better. Not great. Not everybody.”

Jefferson opened the third period on a 7-0 run, but a Nickelson drive and jumper and a 3-pointer 20 seconds apart put East ahead, 41-39, and the Trojans never trailed again.

“We came out more focused and played harder,” said Nickelson, who matched his season scoring average. “We never gave up. The coaches kept telling us to go harder and go harder.”

+7 
121217mp-Waterloo-East-bball-7

Waterloo East's TreyShawn LaBeaux goes up for a shot during the Trojans' win over Cedar Rapids Jefferson Tuesday.

Twice in the fourth quarter Jefferson narrowed its gap to one, but both times, East answered with triple. Nickelson hit one with 6:03 left and Harrington knocked home his third 3-pointer with 4:02 to go that made it 61-57.

“Every time they came back, we just played harder and that was the difference,” Nickelson added. “This game was a boost for us, but we need to continue to get better and better every day, starting with tomorrow.”

East (3-1) hosts Cedar Rapids Washington Saturday.

“We will see,” said McGraw. “Everybody is having a hard time figuring out their role on this team. A lot of them would like to be player-coach ... we just have a lot of work to do.”

Wat. East 77, C.R. Jeff. 68

CEDAR RAPIDS JEFFERSON (1-2) — Osborne Meiborg 4-16 0-0 8, Willie Guy III 7-17 6-7 24, Kyler Bell 1-5 4-4 6, Kyran Ligon 6-11 1-4 13, Trenton Kuennen 2-3 0-0 4, Blaze Bouzek 1-3 0-0 3, Ryan Blum 3-4 2-2 8, Brayden Frazier 0-0 0-0 0, Raejzuan Shockley 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 25-60 13-17 68.

WATERLOO EAST (3-1) — Tyrese Nickelson 7-14 10-13 27, Jacee Clark 4-5 1-2 9, Jovahn Holmes 0-3 0-0 0, TreyShawn LaBeaux 2-6 2-5 6, Kendall Robinson 1-3 0-0 2, Stevie VanArsdale 0-0 0-0 0, DaQuavion Walker 4-7 2-7 13, Tavious Jenkins 3-3 0-1 6, Larenz Plum 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 27-62 15-28 77.

C.R. Jefferson 21 11 16 18 — 68

Waterloo East 20 16 15 26 — 77

3-point goals—C.R. Jefferson 5 (Guy 4, Bouzek). East 8 (Nickelson 3, Harrington 2, Walker 3). Total fouls—C.R. Jefferson 22, East 14. Fouled out—none.

JEFFERSON SOPHS 49, EAST SOPHS 46

JEFFERSON — Gabriel Coyle 2, Keshawn Dixon 4, Elijah Jefferson 18, Ezeki Leggins 2, Kenneth Moore 8, Jamarre Robinson 3, Jackson Schreckengast 4, Nicholas Smith 8.

EAST — Ronald Frazier 15, Ramir Scott 6, Dylan Reyes 3, Prince Witt 6, Brian Keene 8, Nameer Johnson 4, Deion Hicks 4.

0
0
0
0
0

Sports Reporter

Sports reporter for The Courier

Load comments