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Blue Jay boys get a 'satisfying' win on Senior Night

Jan. 30—JAMESTOWN — Some kids might get sentimental when it comes to Senior Night.

Dalton Lamp is not one of those kids.

"I wanted a win — that's all that was on my mind," Lamp, a senior starter for the Jamestown High School basketball team, said. "When we played (St. Mary's) at St. Mary's we were down three starters and we lost by like three. I played in that game so tonight, I definitely wanted a win."

Lamp — and the Blue Jays — got their win.

The Blue Jays picked up their first win since Dec. 29 on Tuesday night, dispatching Bismarck St. Mary's 78-62. The squad now boasts a conference record of 2-8 and an overall record of 4-11. Jamestown's next chance at a win will come on Thursday at Bismarck Legacy. The squad is slated to tip off at 7:45 p.m.

"I think senior night got us really hyped up to win one," Ryan Larson, the Jays' top scorer on Tuesday, said. "It's kind of crazy that it's over already and that our high school careers are coming to an end but this game is just like any other game and we wanted to win it.

"We've been putting in the work in all season but it's just been so long since we've got a win that we really wanted it tonight," he said. "We just got to keep our heads up, grinding through the season and keep the energy that we had tonight and we can beat anybody in the West."

After a disappointing 79-47 loss to Mandan on Jan. 26, the Blue Jays knew they had to make some changes to their game if they wanted to pick up a win in the month of January.

Based on their performance against St. Mary's, it was pretty clear they made the changes.

"Right now any win would have been satisfying but that one was definitely satisfying," JHS head coach Jason Carroll said. "We took some really nice strides in the right direction. All of the things we talked about having to do a little bit better we did do a little bit better. There is still room for improvement but the guys were under control, we shot better shots tonight and then we played better defense for the most part.

"It was really, really nice to get that W, especially on senior night," he said. "My seniors have worked really, really hard this year. They deserve to get one."

From the get-go, it looked like the seniors and the rest of the Jamestown squad were in control of the matchup.

Noah Meissner hit an early 3-pointer in transition to add to the 10-0 run by the Jays to start the first. Meissner's 12 first-half points along with 10 from Larson and nine from Lamp contributed to the Jays' 43-28 lead after one half of play. The Jays' other seniors, Jack Van Berkom and James Horgan each scored six through the first half of play.

"We ran the offense really well — everyone was getting open and we were giving the one extra every time to the open shot," Lamp said. "Everyone was giving up good shots for great shots tonight.

"I want to give a shoutout to James Horgan for coming back into this season working hard and getting those offensive rebounds," he said. "He's a huge energy guy,"

Horgan has been out of playing contention for quite some time but his slew of nagging injuries did not stop him from contributing on Tuesday. Horgan ended his night with 11 points.

Horgan is not the only one who has had to step up for the Jays this year.

Three weeks ago, Lamp sprained his ankle, benching him for two games. The senior has played in the Jays' last three games but with the injury, he's been forced to change his game.

"With my knee and my ankle, I am way slower and less athletic than I ever have been before — I can just tell that my mobility and my movement is down from what it used to be so I've had to use my head more and play more with my head than my athleticism," Lamp said. "I'm getting there — I think I've found a new rhythm.

"Guys were ready to come in and play when I sat out and we left a couple spots on the bench open at the beginning of the year and we've been moving some kids up so they've been doing good," Lamp said. "They've been working hard."

While the younger varsity players have been working to fill in for Lamp on occasion, no one could fill the senior's shoes against the Saints.

With 2:12 to go, the Blue Jays were up 73-60 when Lamp drained his last 3 of the night to make it a 16-point Blue Jay lead. On the Jays' next possession, the senior faked out the Saints' defense when, instead of shooting it, he dished a pass out to Larson who laid it in to make it 78-60 Blue Jays.

Lamp was the Jays' leading shooter, hitting five from beyond the arc en route to 19 points. As a team, the Jays hit 12 3-point shots. Larson hit three 3-pointers and ended his senior night with 21 points. Meissner was the Jays' third-highest scorer with 18.

"This is the most energy we've had all year," Lamp said. "I think that's going to carry over to the next one."

Jamestown 78, St. Mary's 62

SM 28 34 — 62

JHS 43 35 — 78

SM — Christian Benning 22, Jackson Barth 14, Nick Roemmich 10, Connor Schatz 8, Aeyden Price 6, Brooks Armstrong 2. Totals: 22 FG, 11-16 FT, 11 fouls. 3-pointers: Roemmich 3, Benning 2, Schatz 2.

JHS — Ryan Larson 21, Dalton Lamp 19, Noah Meissner 18, James Horgan 11, Jack Van Berkom 6, Caleb Schiele 3. Totals: 32 FG, 2-11 FT, 17 fouls. 3-pointers: Lamp 5, Larson 3, Meissner 2, Horgan 1, Schiele 1.