ROCKINGHAM — Despite being her team’s second-leading scorer, Charis Byrd wondered why the opposition would double-team her.
That defensive strategy backfired on Bible Baptist Christian as Claire Jordan scorched the nets for a game-high 30 points and added 22 rebounds to lead Temple Christian to a 66-50 victory Tuesday afternoon. The win improved the Tigers to 13-0 on the season.
“I think the reason they did it is because I’m the main ball-handler,” Byrd said. “After the game I said ‘Why would they double me?’ I guess they wanted to get the ball to someone else who doesn’t handle it as much and try to create turnovers.”
Despite being the main focus of the Colts’ defense, Byrd scored 15 points and grabbed four rebounds. She had nine points in the second quarter as the Tigers turned a one-point deficit into a four-point halftime lead.
“I made a 3 and that might have scared them,” Byrd said. “We have played them before and maybe they labeled me as a jump shooter.”
As Bible Baptist was turning its attention to Byrd, Jordan was finding a clear path to the basket and that is what her coach wanted.
“When they started double-teaming Charis, I told them someone was going to be open,” Temple Christian coach Broderick Hair said. “I told Charis and Claire to keep penetrating.”
Byrd added she thought by not trying to force any shots it allowed her teammate to find her offense.
“I just pulled out and let Claire do her thing,” she said. “My niche is bringing the ball up and getting the ball to her. Her niche is to drive to the basket and score.”
As pleased as Hair was with his top duo’s play, he was more proud of his reserves.
“I’m very happy our bench players helped us,” Hair said. “This was the first time this year they have helped out.”
Joanna Gould, who was saddled with foul problems in the first half, finished with nine points and seven rebounds for the Tigers. Elizabeth McQueen added six points and seven rebounds.
Mary Katelyn Nethery scored a team-high 22 points for the Colts (8-3). Moriah Green chipped in with 13.
Temple Christian is slated to return to action 5 p.m. Friday when it travels to Tabernacle Christian in Monroe.
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson may be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14 or on Twitter @scgolfer.