Perry basketball looks for leaders after Greene County loss

Sean Cordy
Drake Levan looks to move the ball against Greene County on Thursday, Jan. 21.

Following the Jayettes' close game Thursday night, the Perry boys basketball team (0-10) had a challenging bout against Greene County (4-8) for the team's third game of the week. After losses to Saydel and Carlisle on Monday and Tuesday, the Bluejays fell 71-38 to their latest visitors.

Staying in routine

Perry has been able to claim one thing this season on the box score: Strong first quarters. Just as the team's close game against West Central Valley or Monday's loss to Saydel — in which the Bluejay led after one quarter — Perry was able to hold its own ground early on Thursday.

Perry's Kaelen Davis puts up a shot on Thursday, Jan. 21 against Greene County.

After a layup from Caden Steva following three-straight Perry offensive rebounds on the possession, the Bluejays were down only 18-15.

Unfortunately, that's when things took a turn, just as the aforementioned performances this season. Within the next two minutes, Greene County was up 26-15 en route to a commanding 31-17 lead before halftime.

"They can be successful but when things go the wrong way, they kind of barrel roll themselves and let things go," Perry head coach David Morris said. "They kind of get back into the pattern."

Finding leaders

Jordan Ochoa passes the ball to a teammate during a home contest against Greene County on Thursday, Jan. 21.

Hoping to turn such a pattern around, after the game, senior Jordan Ochoa gave an impassioned speech in the locker room, convinced that the team can hang with teams as evidenced by that early first-half performance.

"Jordan is a guy who is going to put in the work. And I think he's learning how to become a leader," Morris said. "Pretty much the quarterback on the team. He might not be able to be the guy, the point guard, but he makes things happen."

Delayed development

June Rey Reisberg drives to the basket on Thursday, Jan. 21 during a home contest against Greene County.

At the end of January, the Bluejays are still a ripe roster after being on hiatus for a month with COVID-19 issues and holiday break. That has partially resulted in the team not fully finding a core group as soon as other teams.

In total, nine Bluejays were able to connect with the net but topped out with six-point performances from Ochoa and Brandon Mahler. Sincere Johnson and June Rey Reisberg had five apiece.

Sincere Johnson in action for the Bluejays on Thursday, Jan. 21.

There are still 11 more regular-season games left to play in the next three weeks to develop those pieces. That has Morris interested to see how the team learns to adjust with limited practice.

"I think we have more games than practices, which is something I don't like," Morris added. "You have to learn on the fly. It's almost like playing AAU in the spring and summer. You make adjustments and they need to make those adjustments."

Next Up

Perry remains on its home floor Friday with a visit from undefeated Carroll (11-0, 10-0) which won 88-13 in the first game.

Omar Jaimes surveys the floor on Thursday, Jan. 21.