Omaha Burke hit timely 3-pointers throughout Friday night's boys basketball game with Omaha Creighton Prep.
But it was the Bulldogs' work on the other end of the floor that earned them a hard-fought 43-40 victory.
Burke, 10-9 and ranked 10th in the state, held seventh-ranked Prep (11-8) to 30.8 percent shooting from the field. The Junior Jays failed to shoot better than 36 percent in any quarter.
“I was really impressed with our defensive effort,” Burke coach Ben Holling said. “Our ball pressure was extremely good. Prep's very smart, they're well-coached and if you don't make them work it around, they'll make you pay.”
The loss snapped Prep's three-game winning streak. And even though the Junior Jays held their seventh consecutive opponent to 51 points or less — that includes games against No. 1 Omaha South and No. 2 Omaha Central — coach Josh Luedtke was disappointed with his team's offensive effort.
“Defensively we did enough to win the ballgame, but offensively we were terrible,” Luedtke said. “We stood around a lot, and give Burke credit, they got up in our face and my team doesn't like it when teams get up and guard. Our guys have to be aggressive.”
Still, Prep had a chance to force overtime.
With his team up 43-40, Burke's Trey Carr missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 8.7 seconds left. With no timeouts left, Prep rushed up the floor and had the ball knocked out of bounds with two seconds left. The Junior Jays got the ball to senior guard Kevin Dineen, who scored a game-high 20 points, but his off-balance 3-pointer from the right wing only grazed the front of the rim.
Prep spent most of the night trying to catch the Bulldogs. Carr hit a 3-pointer just before the first-quarter buzzer to give Burke an 11-9 lead, and Prep never led again.
Burke led 23-16 at halftime, which matched its biggest lead of the night. Prep scored the first seven points of the third quarter, but Holling was impressed with how his team responded after that.
“I told them at halftime (Prep) wasn't going to lie down for anybody,” Holling said. “When they made that run, I think five weeks ago we would have folded. We've really matured these last five or six weeks.”
Burke regained a 37-31 lead with less than six minutes to play when Prep made another push. The Junior Jays cut their deficit to 39-38 after two Alex Allbery free throws with 1:26 left.
But on the ensuing possession, Calisto Kamoro found junior Rashad McCoy open in the right corner, and McCoy nailed a 3-pointer with 1:10 remaining to make it 42-38. It was Burke's eighth and final 3-pointer on the night — the Bulldogs made only six shots inside the arc.
“He stepped up,” Holling said of McCoy, who made four of the 3-pointers and finished with 16 points. “With a kid like Rashad, I want him shooting it, and he shot it with confidence.”
Carr led the Bulldogs with 17 points, scoring 14 in the first half, while Kamoro grabbed 11 rebounds.
Both teams play home games Saturday as Burke faces Omaha Westside and Prep hosts 18-4 Kansas City Rockhurst. Prep also plays two top-five teams, Omaha Benson and Millard West, next week.
“We don't have time to feel sorry for ourselves,” Luedtke said. “We have to be tougher and more disciplined.”
Creighton Prep (11-8) ................. 9 7 12 12—40
At Omaha Burke (10-9) ................. 11 12 10 10—43
CP: Michael Emodi 2-5 0-2 4, Pat Broderick 1-5 1-3 3, Kevin Dineen 6-11 5-5 20, Kirk Kudlacz 1-5 2-4 4, Drew Homa 0-4 0-0 0, Alex Allbery 2-8 4-6 9, Jacob Mattern 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 12-39 12-19 40. Totals 12-39 12-20 40.
OB: Trey Carr 6-15 2-4 17, Jack Dresslar 0-1 0-1 0, Kevin Clayton 0-1 1-2 1, Dartan Henderson 1-1 0-1 2, Seth Curran 0-1 0-0 0, Rashad McCoy 5-12 2-2 16, Ryan Poppen 0-1 0-0 0, Calisto Kamoro 1-3 2-2 4, Nick McCulloch 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 14-37 7-12 43.
3-point goals: CP 4-16 (Dineen 3-7, Allbery 1-3, Broderick 0-2, Homa 0-4), OB 8-21 (McCoy 4-10, Carr 3-7, McCulloch 1-2, Curran 0-1, Poppen 0-1). Rebounds: CP 31 (Allbery 11), OB 26 (Kamoro 11). Turnovers: CP 12, OB 15.
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