Jamaine Nance pulled up for a jumper from 3-point range. Swish. Nothing but net.
Next trip down – swish. He doubled the early lead.
Nance finished with 30 points on five 3-pointers as Space Jam beat Hot Cheese Soup 84-61. This came in the first round of the double-elimination playoffs March 3 at the Marshall Wellness Center.
“I just tried to play with intensity and take what the defense was giving me and play within my team,” Nance, a 6-foot point guard, said. “And it was my night offensively.”
He also had five rebounds, five assists and two steals. Nance played for Lee High School from 2000-04 and for West Alabama from 2005-08.
Will Holden added 20 points on six 3-pointers, eight rebounds and five assists for Space Jam (14-4). Austen Young had 13 points and five rebounds. Player/coach Byrd Hayes and Adam Kimbro grabbed six rebounds apiece.
“Hot Cheese always gives us a good game,” Hayes said. “We call them our arch-nemesis. They always play hard.
“We just played hard. We talked more on defense, and transition buckets.”
After their 6-0 start, Space Jam built a 30-13 cushion. They led 40-30 at halftime and were up 61-41 with nine minutes left.
Chase Clinard scored a game-high 32 for Hot Cheese Soup (8-8). He also had six rebounds, two assists and two steals. Player/coach Ethan Walker added 10 points and six rebounds.
“They just shot lights out,” Clinard said. “Right before halftime, we cut it down to 10 points. And then second half they got hot again from 3. And we also got tired because we only had five players.”
“We fought as hard as we could with the five we had,” Walker said. “We just didn’t have the depth.”