CARBONDALE — The Terriers blasted Mt. Vernon 73-44 Friday night.
The game was rarely close.
“We didn't compete very well,” Mt. Vernon coach Scott Gamber said.
Mt. Vernon tied the game at 12 after a 3-pointer from Jake Pike late in the first quarter.
“I thought maybe we'll be alright because we didn't start out very well and then it just became a nightmare,” Gamber said.
Carbondale answered with a 9-0 run to close the opening quarter and take a commanding 21-12 lead.
“When a team's on a run you've really, really got to work the ball and make sure you get a great shot,” Gamber said. “And we didn't do that.”
The Terriers piled it on after that.
The Carbondale margin grew to double digits early in the second quarter. Transfer Lavante Sutton knocked down a 3-pointer to make the score 25-14.
Carbondale put a trio of players in double figures. Devontavious Payne led the group with 16 points. Shamarc Bursey added an efficient 14 on just eight shot attempts.
Shakari Hawkins led the Rams with 17. Braden Fitzjerrells finished with nine.
Mt. Vernon never managed to mount a run against Carbondale, and the deficit steadily grew. The middle of the second quarter saw another Carbondale surge. This time the Terriers push their advantage from 25-16 to 34-17 after a pair of free throws from Sutton. The edge was 28-23 at half.
“We challenged their toughness (at half), and I kind of thought we went out there and just went through the motions.”
Carbondale's biggest margin was 31 late in the fourth.
Gamber turned to his bench late in the game, and a dozen Rams played in the game. But no combination could unlock the Terriers.
“We're really going to work on fixing this,” Gamber said. “You can tell tonight. We tried. We play a lot of guys.”
Mt. Vernon finished the game 17 of 44 from the field. Gamber said he was unhappy with his team's shot timing in the half-court offense.
“Every time we ran a set we shot the ball on the first option whether it was there whether it wasn't there,” Gamber said. “That's what I told our guys. Good defense teams like Carbondale like Centralia like Cahokia you cannot get a good look off of one pass.”
Mt. Vernon is 10-4 overall this season and 1-3 in South Seven Conference action. The Rams face Northwest Academy at 6 p.m. tonight.