ORLANDO, FLORIDA – Arosco Dubois scored nine of his game-high 19 points in the third quarter, Monday, and the Evans Trojans overcame a frigid fourth quarter to stay unbeaten with a 50-41 victory over West Orange.
The Trojans are 4-0 for the first time since they opened the 2016-17 season 5-0.
Caleel Horne scored 12 points to lead West Orange (1-3).
Dubois also had six steals in the game. He scored nine of the Trojans’ 14 third-quarter points. One of his steals set up his bucket with 1:40 left in the third, and his put-back of a miss with 30 seconds left in the third put the Trojans up 41-30 going into the fourth.
Dubois credited fast breaks for his success.
“Sophomore, a big-time player,” Evans coach Lonzo Morgan said. “I felt like he kept us in the game the first half and the third quarter. Stellar performance offensively and defensively. He’s a sneaky-good defender and a real good heady offensive player. Just a sophomore. I love that kid.”
Little did the Trojans know that Dubois’ put-back would be their last bucket of the game. West Orange held Evans to 0 of 9 from the field in the fourth quarter.
West Orange couldn’t take advantage of Evans’ arctic shooting. The Warriors committed eight turnovers in the fourth thanks to Evans’ man-to-man defense. West Orange committed 26 turnovers overall, which Evans converted into 16 points.
They also withstood six fourth-quarter points from West Orange’s Djems Narcisse, who had eight points overall until fouling out with 48.9 seconds left.
“Offense sputtered. We missed a bunch of open shots,” Evans coach Lonza Morgan said. “Ugly win, but they all count.
“Defense started off a little slow, had a halftime lead. We came out, tried to extend it, went cold. We’ll hang our hat on defense tonight and get back in the lab.”
Jalen Escontrias, who added 14 points, 11 rebounds, five steals and two assists, kept the Trojans one step ahead of the Warriors by hitting 6 of 6 from the free-throw line. The Trojans hit 9 of 11 free-throw attempts in the fourth quarter.
“We do something called Deep 6 – sprint, get tired and gotta go to the line to make a free throw,” Morgan said. “That came into play at night. Jalen was able to go down and knock down six free throws in a row.”
Before the game, West Orange coach Eddie Johnson said his players hadn’t played very well. The Warriors, however, jumped out to a 13-9 lead through one quarter. Daniel Burton had four points for the Warriors in the quarter.
West Orange’s success was short-lived, as Evans held the Warriors scoreless for 5:16 of the second quarter. By the time Horne hit a 3-pointer with 34 seconds left in the first half, Evans had turned an 18-14 deficit into a 27-21 halftime lead.
West Orange’s struggles continued in the second half. Evans held the Warriors scoreless for another 3:10 in the third and eventually led by as much as 12 points.
“They played a little harder tonight,” Johnson said. “I did appreciate that. We don’t seem to be able to get in or out of our offensive or defensive sets quick enough.
“As the game went along, as they made adjustments, we couldn’t make adjustments to counter their adjustments.”