AC Davis Fights and Falls 53-44 to #1 Gonzaga Prep
All things considered, it was a good week for Davis.
Despite taking two losses, the picture became more clear where they stand with the rest of the state.
"Before the game we talked about how this is the measuring stick," said Davis head coach Eli Juarez, "If you're going to measure yourself, you should do it against the best team in the state. We held our own, and now we know what we have to improve on."
The stars for Davis and Gonzaga Prep got out of the gates hot. Gonzaga commit Anton Watson was perfect from the field for 11 first-quarter points; while Davis forward Collin Kelley held his own with nine first-quarter points.
This made the score 17-14, Gonzaga Prep up, going into the second quarter.
Suddenly Davis started to show their youth. As more responsibility was put on the underclassmen, the turnovers started rolling in.
"As I've always told my team, our younger players are still developing. A lot of those turnovers came from those younger players. They have to grow, and understand to make the simple pass, little things like that," said Coach Juarez.
The loss of momentum would prove to be detrimental. Gonzaga Prep would go on a 21-6 run in the second half to make the score 52-34 with five minutes left in the game.
But Davis wasn't going down without a fight. Led by Collin Kelley and Alexzander Delgado, Davis put together a 10-1 run to make the score a respectable 53-44.
The comeback was also made against the Gonzaga Prep first team unit.
"We switched from zone to man defense, and we got after it. That's hard to do, especially when you've played a full game, and you also played a game two days ago. Then you're coming out here with four minutes left to close the gap. It's pretty hard to get that out of you, and we did it tonight," said a positive Coach Juarez.
An interesting note for Davis on defense. It was 6-2 power forward Ivory Evans-Kimble (not Collin Kelley) that guarded the 6-7 Gonzaga commit Anton Watson.
"There were two reasons for that. We didn't want to get Collin Kelley into foul trouble; we'd rather have Kelley in for the duration of the game than me. Also, I feel coaches believed I could guard him. Anton Watson is a tall kid, but I had some size on him," said the linebacker-built 6-2 220lb Ivory Evans-Kimble.
Also worth noting, Gonzaga head coach Mark Few was in attendance for the contest.
Could this have been the reason why Anton Watson finished with 24 point on 10-10 shooting?
"Coach Mark Few has come to a couple of my games, so it's not much pressure or anything like that. Me and him talk occasionally, we'll text sometimes, so it's pretty cool seeing him in the stands," said an even-keeled Anton Watson.
Davis just played two of the top ten teams in the state, and will now get a chance to catch their breath.
After taking a six-day hiatus, Davis will take a brutal 230 mile road trip up I-5 to play Bellingham (5-2).
After reflecting on the week, Coach Juarez was cool as can be, "The way we lost is important, because we executed and did great things. I'm pleased with where we're at right now."