Rally Falls Short

Mesquite’s Criswell Has 31 Points, 16 Rebounds In Desert Dogs’ Win

Jamestown’s Michael Davenport (32) takes the ball to the rim while teammate Ohndo Smith, left, looks on and Mesquite’s Stephen McCall (5) defends during Sunday’s The Basketball League game at Jamestown Community College’s Physical Education Complex. P-J photo by Alex Shipherd

With just four minutes remaining Sunday afternoon, Jamestown Jackals guard/forward Michael Davenport drove to the basket, was fouled and then took the slow walk to the foul line where he would score his 31st, and final, point.

At the other end of the court at the Physical Education Complex on the campus of Jamestown Community College, Mesquite, Nevada head coach Carlnel Wiley stood in front of his bench and said to no one in particular: “Michael is balling. This cat is balling.”

Wiley was fortunate, though.

He had someone on his team who was “balling,” too.

Tyron Criswell matched Davenport point for point, spearheaded a dominant third quarter that gave the Desert Dogs some breathing room and they held off a late Jamestown rally to post a 102-95 victory in action from The Basketball League.

Jamestown’s Austin Hamilton (11) shoots over Mesquite’s Johnathan Loyd. P-J photo by Alex Shipherd

The win improved Mesquite’s record to 8-4 on the season, while the Jackals fell to 3-8 with a road trip to Tampa, Florida on the horizon where they’ll meet the Titans on Wednesday.

“We’ve got to get on a plane (today),” Jamestown coach Mark Anderson said. ” … It’s not a vacation by any means. It’s a business trip.”

Criswell, a 6-foot-3 guard, was all business yesterday.

The league’s leading scorer at 23 points per game poured in 31 points, pulled down 16 rebounds, and had four assists, two steals and a block in a highlight-reel performance.

“He’s really, really athletic,” Wiley said. “We’re trying to get him a little G League experience and he’s been in a couple combines and tryouts. He has a solid body, and he’s trying to figure out, as most of my players are, who they are. I don’t want to stop them here at this level.

Jamestown’s Glenroy Carr Jr. puts up a shot over Mesquite’s Don Muepo during The Basketball League action Sunday at Jamestown Community College’s Physical Education Complex. P-J photo by Alex Shipherd

“I really feel it’s not the Xs and Os, it’s the Johnnys and Joes. I want to know the character of our team. There is a reason we’re all here. We all have holes in our game. I don’t want to go to the NBA and I don’t want a D-I college job. I want to coach the men in that locker room and I want to coach the other guys I might have. They have aspirations.”

Brandon Mitchell chipped in 18 points, Johnathan Loyd added 16, Stephen McCall had 11 and Dushone Brown Jr. scored 10.

“They’re a good team,” Anderson said. “They’re not big, but they compete on every play, whether on offense or defense. … We didn’t play our best today.”

In addition to Davenport’s 31 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals, Jamestown received 17 points from DeAngelo Stewart, 15 from James Helton, 11 from Glenroy Carr Jr. and 10 from Austin Hamilton.

But the Jackals’ slow start to the second half and its 38 percent shooting from the field for the game proved costly.

Leading 45-38 at intermission, the hosts went nearly four minutes without a point. Meanwhile, Criswell scored Mesquite’s first 10 points — all on strong drives to the basket. When combined with a putback by Brown Jr. and a steal and layup by Loyd, the Desert Dogs’ led 52-47 with 7¢ minutes remaining in the third quarter.

Jamestown never led the rest of the game, although it stayed within striking distance, cutting the deficit to four points, 94-90, following Stewart’s two free throws with 2:33 remaining.

Then McCall drilled a 3-pointer and four free throws, sandwiched around another charity toss from Criswell, to close out the game and conclude Mesquite’s 2-1 eastern road trip.

Jamestown, which was coming off a victory over New York on Saturday, has lost seven of its last eight overall.

“We’ve got good guys,” Anderson said. “We just have to find a way to win.”

NOTES: The Jackals’ next home game is next Sunday when it meets league-leading Albany at 3 p.m. … Davenport missed practice all week, according to Anderson because of injury, but he looked 100 percent yesterday. “He had that look in his eye,” the Jackals’ coach said. … The Desert Dogs’ Loyd was a dual-sport college athlete playing guard and wide receiver for the University of Oregon basketball and football teams, respectively.

MESQUITE (102)

Loyd 6-9 2-4 16, Criswell 12-20 6-7 31, Mitchell 6-19 5-6 18, McCall 3-9 4-4 11, Muepo 3-5 0-0 8, Mathis 2-3 0-0 6, Brown Jr. 1-2 0-0 2, Stewart 3-8 4-4 10. Totals 36-75 21-23 102.

JAMESTOWN (95)

Taylor 2-10 0-0 4, Carr Jr. 5-17 1-1 11, Harris 1-5 0-0 2, Helton 7-17 0-1 15, Mulamba 0-2 1-2 1, Hamilton 4-8 0-0 10, Carter 0-0 0-0 0, Stewart 3-9 10-10 17, Smith 1-1 0-1 2, Davenport 10-16 10-13 31, Dupree-Gibson 1-4 0-0 2. Totals 34-89 24-32 95.

Mesquite 18 20 36 28 — 102

Jamestown 16 29 20 30 — 95

3-point goals–Mesquite 9-32 (Loyd 2-4, Criswell 1-6, Mitchell 1-8, McCall 1-5, Muepo 2-3, Mathis 2-3, Brown Jr. 0-1, Stewart 0-2), Jamestown 3-20 (Taylor 0-1, Harris 0-3, Helton 1-3, Hamilton 0-3, Stewart 1-5, Davenport 1-3, Dupree-Gibson 0-2). Total rebounds–Mesquite 49 (Criswell 16), Jamestown 45 (Taylor 10). Assists–Mesquite 16 (Criswell 4, Mitchell 4), Jamestown 14 (Taylor 4, Davenport 4). Steals–Mesquite 7 (Loyd 4), Jamestown 11 (Taylor 3). Total fouls–Mesquite 27, Jamestown 18. Fouled out–Mathis.

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