The Port Arthur News
Nederland did everything it could to top District 20-4A leader Beaumont Central on Friday. But, the one thing the Bulldogs couldn’t seem to do is find the net, as a cold shooting night doomed Nederland in a 50-40 loss to the Jaguars at the Dog Dome.
Nederland shot 32.6 percent from the floor on the night and only had five players score in the game. The Bulldogs shot 29 percent from the field in the first half as Central grabbed the lead and didn’t look back.
“We just didn’t shoot well,” Nederland head coach Brian English said. “Sometimes, you have to make plays when you need them. We rely on making those open looks. We have to make shots. When we don’t, we’re in trouble.”
Central ended the first quarter with a 14-11 lead and extended that to a 29-18 halftime lead. Though Central was a tough defensive team, the Bulldogs had open looks at the basket, but couldn’t knock down enough of those open shots to survive.
Nederland played well on defense in the loss. The 50 points Central scored was its lowest point total since losing 38-37 to Tyler Lee in the Lufkin tournament on Dec. 8. Central has only been held to 50 or fewer points four times this season before Friday night.
The Bulldogs also held Central to 40.4 percent shooting on the night and 34.2 percent from the floor in the first three quarters.
“I thought the kids played hard,” English said. “They battled. Central’s good. You have to give them some credit. Holding that team to 50 points is pretty good.”
That defense paid off in the third quarter, when Nederland went on a 7-1 run to make it a two possession game at 30-25. Nederland maintained that five-point deficit into the fourth quarter, but failed to even get a shot off on three of its first four possessions of the final period.
That run included a pair of turnovers and a shot by Colton Weisbrod, who finished with a game-high 18 points. Central pushed the lead back to 38-31, but Nederland battled all the way back with four minutes to play.
Jamiere Rodgers hit a layup and was fouled, making the free throw to cut Central’s lead to 38-36. That was as close as the Bulldogs would get however, as Jaguars sophomore post E’Torrian Wilridge hit two shots in the paint and Central scored eight unanswered points before the Bulldogs scored again with under 30 seconds left.
Nederland didn’t start off cold, as the two teams tipped off in the first quarter by exchanging the lead six times. That included six points from Weisbrod and a 3-pointer from Jared Lorimier that made it 11-10 Nederland with two minutes to play in the first quarter.
Lorimier’s trey was the last one Nederland would hit until Jacob Landry made one in the second. The Bulldogs missed 10 straight 3-pointers in between those two long-range shots and were 3 for 22 from behind the arc for the game.
Weisbrod added five rebounds to his 18 points while teammate Zach English had nine points, three rebounds and a steal. Lorimier led the Bulldogs with six rebounds, adding seven points. Rodgers (3 points) and Jacob Landry (3) were the only other two scorers for Nederland.
Central’s E’Torrian Wilridge had 15 points, but no other Jaguar was in double figures. Freshman Nijal Pearson had eight points, six rebounds and three steals.
Nederland (19-7, 5-2) ends the first half of district play alone in third place behind Central (20-4, 7-0) and Beaumont Ozen. The Bulldogs will host Vidor to open the second half of district play at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Beaumont Central 50, Nederland 40
Cen 14 15 7 14 — 50
Ned 11 7 13 9 — 40
NED: Colton Weisbrod 18, Zach English 9, Jared Lorimier 7, Jamiere Rodgers 3, Jacob Landry 3.
CENTRAL: E’Torrian Wilridge 15, Nijal Pearson 8, Garrison Mitchell 6, Jacory Guillory 7, Tyrin Atwood 3, Michael Jacquet, Jordan Stevens 4, Andre’ Morris 2, Andrew Wells 2, Dominique Harrison 1.
Statistics: Rebounds — Nederland 24 (Lorimier 6); Central 32 (Pearson, Mitchell 6). Assists — Nederland 2, Central 3. Steals — Nederland 3, Central 4 (Pearson 3). Turnovers — Nederland 12, Central 9. Fouls — Nederland 14, Central 12. 3-pointers made — Nederland 3 (English, Lorimier, Landry); Central 1 (Guillory).
Records: Nederland (19-8, 5-2); Central (20-4, 7-0).
Next: Nederland hosts Vidor, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.