TRENTON — Southern Wayne may not have trailed Monday, but Jones Senior didn't make it as easy as the final score indicated.
The Saints remained undefeated with an 81-65 road victory, the team's third of the season. Southern Wayne (4-0) defeated Goldsboro 101-95 Nov. 25 and took a few shots from Jones Senior (0-3) before taking control.
"Coming off a big win against Goldsboro, sometimes you can have a letdown," Southern Wayne coach Dwight Smith said. "Toward the end, we were able to step up and make the plays to win."
The Trojans got within 18-14 after a Brygel Murrell basket in the waning moments of the first quarter, but the Saints started the second on a 13-2 spurt, punctuated by Jamari Leach's perimeter basket. Southern Wayne went up 39-21 at the break and led by as many as 21 in the second half, but Jones Senior chipped away at the lead. Djimon Jones scored 24 of his game-high 31 in the final two quarters, including a free throw with 2:01 remaining in the game to bring the Trojans within 76-65.
On the other end, Nadaviyon Pemberton hit a 3-pointer to effectively end the game, but the Saints weren't pleased with the performance.
"We had to stay together, move the ball and get back on defense," Leach said. "We let (Jones Senior) get too many points, but we'll get back to it in practice tomorrow."
Trojans coach Dexter Cannon said it would've been easy for the team to give up, but the players continued to fight.
"There are no quitters on this team," Cannon said. "I told them that even though we're outsized in every position, they put on their jerseys the same way we do. They listened and kept fighting."
SOUTHERN WAYNE 81, JONES SENIOR 65
SW 18 21 22 20 — 81
JS 14 7 23 21 — 65
SOUTHERN WAYNE — Jamari Leach 18, Nadaviyon Pemberton 13, David Brewer 12, Jeremiah Anderson 11, Stewart 8, Pocknett 8, Hatcher 5, Van Dyke 4, Sampson 2
JONES SENIOR — Djimon Jones 31, Jayden Jones 16, Brown 5, Murrell 5, Edwards 4, Cannon 4
In the girls' game, Southern Wayne used a big run between the second and third quarters to defeat Jones Senior 82-39.
"We have to work on being more consistent, and when we did that we got up to that huge margin," Saints coach Takisha Vann said. "We started to figure it out and it worked out well for us."
Southern Wayne (3-1) jumped out to 12-0 advantage but Jones Senior (0-3) showed its resolve as Tanayja Green and Dymond Foye scored all the points during an 11-4 spurt to close the quarter out and bring the Trojans within 19-14. Jones Senior had 27 turnovers in the first half, but the team shot 57 percent from the floor and got within 30-24 after an Alexis Dillahunt basket with 3:14 remaining in the second.
From there, the Saints turned up the defensive pressure and finished the quarter on a 15-1 run, including a buzzer-beating layup from Erica Sutton to put the team ahead 45-25.
"I really didn't think I would beat the buzzer, but it worked out," Sutton said. "I just posted up and took the shot."
The Saints started the third on a 23-2 spurt, forcing 13 turnovers and setting up the running clock after an Angela Jones 3-pointer with 1:28 left in the frame made the score 68-27.
"It was all about realizing what we were capable of," Southern Wayne's Alissa Meadows said after scoring a game-high 23 points. "The talk at halftime really helped us and we got back on defense — when we play well on defense, the offense usually follows."
The teams play each other again in Dudley on Wednesday.
SOUTHERN WAYNE 82, JONES SENIOR 39
SW 19 26 23 14 — 82
JS 14 11 4 10 — 39
SOUTHERN WAYNE — Alissa Meadows 23, Ty'Lisha Maye 13, Aniqua Langston 11, Ta'niyah Glaspie 10, Bass 6, Jones 5, Sutton 5, Toler 4, Boyette 2, Ezzell 2, Mickens 1
JONES SENIOR — Dymond Foye 15, Tanayja Green 11, Norris 4, Christanson 4, Dillahunt 3, Murrell 2