The Buchanan Bears beat the Edison Tigers Tuesday afternoon 53-40 using a time-tested recipe.
“There’s two things that win basketball games, and that’s defending and rebounding,” Bears coach Brooks Malm said. “Sometimes your shot falls, sometimes it doesn’t, but defense always travels and we did a really good job of being physical.”
The defensive effort is particularly noteworthy as the Tigers hung 83 points at home against Fresno High on Nov. 15.
Buchanan’s guards got in the face of the Edison shooters all game long, forcing contested shots that led to misses and in turn, good transition opportunities on the offensive end.
The Bears held the Tigers to only 20 points in the first half, taking pressure off an offense that struggled by scoring just 43 points against San Joaquin Memorial on Nov. 21.
Spearheading the offensive attack for the Bears was senior Charlie Barnes.
Barnes had 25 points, showcasing his talents on a variety of long distance threes and drives to the basket. And we he got fouled, he made the Tigers pay.
Barnes hit several free throws in the final minutes of the fourth quarter just as Edison had started making a run to cut the Bears lead to five.
Buchanan head coach Brooks Malm said it was the patience of Barnes that allowed him to be so effective.
“Charlie just let the game come to him,” Malm said. “He’s a four-year varsity guy. He didn’t try to force it early. He picked and chose his spots.”
Barnes hit a big jumper from the elbow of the key with about two minutes left to extend the Bears lead back to double digits and the defense made it stand.
Standing with a 2-1 record, the Bears have a week off before they take on the Liberty Patriots from Bakersfield at home Dec. 3.