CHARLESTOWN, Mass. -– Jameilen Jones’ mindset was clear from the opening minutes of No. 3 BC High’s matchup with Charlestown on Saturday afternoon: attack.
Jones, who finished with 33 points and 9 rebounds, knocked down two contested threes in the opening minutes of the game, giving the Eagles a jumpstart offensively that Charlestown was unable to overcome the rest of the game, as the Eagles rolled the Townies 70-44 in their season-opener.
Jones’ attacking style of pIay showed to be contagious to his teammates early on, as seen with a midcourt steal by junior forward Phil Leotsakos(11 points), who proceeded to finish the play with a right handed dunk on the other end – a “pick-six” by football standards.
On the Eagles’ next basket, Jones put down a dunk of his own: a two-handed slam in transition off of a nice feed by senior guard Charles Collins. Scoring in transition was a familiar theme for BC High (1-0), who forced Charlestown (0-2) into 32 turnovers, including 13 in the first quarter.
BC High head coach Bill Loughnane says ball pressure is an integral part to his team’s defense.
“That’s what we do to everybody," Loughnane said. "If a guy makes a play against us, then he makes the play, that’s how we look at it. We’re hoping to get turnovers, we know good players will make good plays against us,"
That was a sentiment Jones repeated.
“I think we played really good defense," he said. "We kept our hands up [on defense], and we kept our intensity up through all four quarters."
Even despite their turnover woes, Charlestown was able to keep the game within striking distance going into halftime. The Townies were down 27-19 before Charles Collins banked a long three-pointer off the glass that give the Eagles a double-digit lead going into the break.
Led by Jones, the Eagles put Charlestown away late in the third quarter; he had 12 points over the final six minutes of the stanza.
On one play at the end of the third quarter after Jones missed a free throw, he skied over the six players in the lane going for the rebound, took it himself, and finished the putback. Moments later, he went to the rim off the dribble and finished an acrobatic lay-up around Charlestown’s long defenders.
“He always has the green light [to shoot],” Loughnane said with a smile.
Jones was happy with his performance, but insisted that it was all part of the gameplan for BC High.
“Coach wanted us to run, I just happened to get some open shots off of cuts and off of our plays,” Jones said. "I’m proud of Charles, he stepped up, and worked hard this summer. Hopefully he’ll be able to keep this up all season."
Townies’ turnovers: Charlestown was without junior guard Taris Wilson, who sat on the bench the entire game in his warm-ups despite playing last night against New Mission. He was the type of ballhandler that the Townies could have used on Saturday, as they amounted 32 turnovers—many of those coming via their guards in transition. Charlestown goes eleven guys deep in their lineup, but Wilson is a must-have player for the Townies in order to make a run in the BCL this year.
The lone bright spot for Charlestown was forward Allijah Robison, who was a constant inside-out threat on his way to 10 points and nine rebounds.
Timmins does dirty work: Senior forward Pete Timmins was a major game-changer for BC High, coming up with 6 points and 12 rebounds. He was a constant presence defensively and on the glass for BC High, who overwhelmed Charlestown in the rebounding column. Jones and Collins also benefited from Timmins’ work on the offensive glass, as they both scored points off of offensive rebounds by Timmins.
“As a team we really wanted to crash the boards,” Jones said, “[Pete] just always seemed to be in the right place at the right time.
Timmons’ play had Loughnane feeling very optimistic about the Eagles’ ceiling this year.
“Pete was terrific," Loughnane said. "I thought last year, when he was playing really, really well, our whole team played well. That bodes real well for us if he plays like that this year.”