By Mitch Howard
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
Peyton Broughton led four players in double figures with 31 points as North Laurel picked up its second straight win. The Jaguars 76-56 decision over Oneida Baptist was also a district win.
“It’s a great win any time you can get a district win early in the year with as young a team as we have. We have a lot of inexperience out there. We have kids that are very talented, just not a lot of varsity action,” North Laurel coach Brad Sizemore said.
After opening the season with a tough loss at Harlan, North Laurel has picked up easy wins over Riverside Christian and OBI.
“I’m glad to see us bounce back like we have,” Sizemore said. “We’re not doing it exactly perfect yet, but we’re playing extremely hard and trying to do the right thing.”
Broughton already had 29 points entering the third quarter as the Jaguars had the game safely in hand with a 19-point lead. In the first three quarters, he showed the ability to make a shot when North Laurel needed it.
“He kind of did that on his own today. It’s going to have to be by committee. Obviously he can score the ball in bunches, but we have to spread it out,” Sizemore said.
It was a one-two punch of Broughton and Elijah Jervis that boosted the Jaguars to an early nine-point lead. Broughton broke a 4-4 tie with a put back and a three-pointer. After and OBI free throw, Jervis scored on a baseline drive. The Mountaineers cut the lead to 11-7 on a layup by Daniel Decker.
After a pull up jumper by Broughton, Jervis buried a three-pointer and scored again on an offensive rebound for an 18-7 lead.
“I think (Jervis) made a lot of improvement over the summer. He’s a scrapper, plays really hard. I was impressed. I thought he finished a lot of shots on the break too,” Sizemore said.
OBI would cut the lead to six points two times in the second quarter. A dunk by D.K. Kiwan off a North Laurel turnover made it a 23-17 game. The athletic Kiwan caused problems for the Jaguars on the boards and with his 21 points.
Broughton would score the next nine points for North Laurel as they pushed back to a 34-23 lead at halftime.
Broughton also scored the first four points of the second half to make it 13 straight points he scored. The North Laurel lead grew to 38-23. The Mountaineers would get a pair of free throws from Daniel Robinson. North Laurel got those points back on a quick layup by Chris Miller. Broughton then grabbed an offensive rebound for an old-fashioned three-point play. When Broughton later buried a three-pointer it gave him 19 points scored in just over seven minutes.
“When he’s on he’s a good as anybody in this region,” Sizemore said. “I’m really pleased with him and hope it will carry over for next week because we have some really big games.”
Despite the 20-point win, Sizemore saw several areas that needed work Saturday. He said the Jaguars must be stronger when play gets physical in the lane, rebound better, and cut down turnovers.
“We had 14 turnovers and we’ve got to cut that down. This team has a lot of guys that are smart with the ball and we can’t have that many turnovers,” Sizemore said. “We’re a work in progress, but the pieces are there. It’s just going to take us some time.”
North Laurel was scheduled to play at Madison Southern Tuesday and will host Clay County in a boy-girl doubleheader Friday.
North Laurel 76, OBI 56
OBI 9 14 16 17—56
North Laurel 18 16 24 18—76
ONEIDA BAPTIST (56)—Robinson 15, Kiwan 21, Osom 5, Shackelford 7, Decker 8.
NORTH LAUREL (76)—Broughton 31, Miller 12, Jervis 11, Thompson 15, Asher 2, Henson 3, Jeffers 2.