Tuesday night the Perry gym played host to the only statewide matchup between two top five girls basketball teams, as the Class 4A No. 3 Jayettes hosted Class 3A second-rated Bondurant-Farrar for a Raccoon River Conference battle.
Perry proved to be the better team throughout, overcoming an early deficit and taking control of the game late in the third quarter to post a 64-53 win.
The nightcap was both a physical and verbal affair, with much jostling and jawing between the two teams. A red-hot shooting display in the third quarter and 25 points from both Shammond Ivory and Will Whiton allowed the host Bluejays to tally 71-60 victory, the fourth straight for the Perry boys.
The Jayettes (11-1, 5-1) moved into a first-place tie with Ballard (5-1) and Carlisle (5-1) in the RRC while the Lady Jays (9-3, 4-3) lost their third consecutive game to fall at least two games back. Perry’s RRC loss is to Ballard — who fell to ADM — while Carlisle’s loss is to Perry.
The hosts fell into a small deficit in the first quarter but slowly began to open a lead behind strong play from Claire Marburger, who proved nearly unstoppable. Amy Marckres provided eight valuable points in the first half — points that forced B-F to alter their defensive scheme — while Julie Diw knocked down several shots to keep the defense from dropping down into a tight zone.
The Jayettes led, 19-9, and 31-20 before a late basket cut their advantage to 31-22 at the break.
Emily Wilson and Ashley Burrows tried to counter six quick points from Marburger in the third quarter, with a Keely Bycroft basket bringing the score to 37-32, the closest B-F would get the rest of the game.
Perry answered with 10 of the next 12 points to post a 47-34 lead entering the final frame as Diw and Maggie Lowe drained 3-pointers, with Lowe and Marckres hitting buckets to cap the spurt.
B-F closed the gap to nine points twice but could never make headway as the Jayettes sank 7-of-9 free throws in the final eight minutes to help cement the win. Marburger had nine of her game-high 26 points in the fourth quarter, with Marckres playing well defensively and pulling down five second-half defensive rebounds to help Perry post a 22-15 edge under the basket.
Diw finished with 14 poitns, with Marckres and Lowe adding 11 each while Emma Olejniczak hit two free throws in the final seconds to cap the Perry scoring.
Burrows was impressive for B-F throughout, adding 12 second-half points to the 13 she scored in the opening half to finish with 25 points. Bycroft had 15 points, Wilson 10 and Madi Atzen three for B-F.
The Perry boys (5-6, 3-3) ran their 2014 mark to 4-0 by winning what turned into a rather chippy contest against their Bluejay counterparts, who fell to 5-4, 2-3 with the loss.
Drake Fuller sank a 3-pointer just before the horn to give B-F a 35-34 halftime lead, but it was Perry’s long range shooting after the break that proved decisive.
Ivory sank a free throw to tie the game, with Cavan Finn knocking down a trey before Whiton hit a foul shot and a triple of his own. A 3-pointer from Ryan Rathje, another deep bomb from Finn, a traditional three-point play from Ivory and lengthy jumpers from Whiton and Rathje fired up the home crowd and sent Perry into a 57-47 lead after the third quarter.
The 6-for-6 effort beyond the arc was countered, to some extent, by the inside presence of Sam Duffy, who scored eight of his 18 points in the period and frustrated the hosts near the rim with his defense.
Ben Daniels nailed a 3-pointer to put Perry up, 63-51, midway through the final frame, but B-F scored nine of the next 11 points to close to within 65-60 with three minutes to play.
Perry hit just five of their first 10 at the stripe in the final period, but Ivory and Whiton each drained their final two to help the hosts pull away.
B-F simply could not counter the speed of Ivory and Whiton, who were repeatedly able to drive to the basket, with the duo accounting for 50 of the 71 Perry points. Finn finished with nine points and Rathje with six while Daniels added four points and Blake Lansing two.
Fuller led B-F with 20 points as Duffy added 18.
Both Perry teams are at Boone Jan. 17 and will travel to Carlisle Jan. 24. The Bluejays are off Tuesday, but the Jayettes will host Woodward-Granger in a non-conference JV/varsity tilt that will start at 6 p.m.