Dajuan King (13) hit a 3-pointer as time expired as the Rebels beat St. John’s Jesuit on Tuesday night at Bowsher High. King led Bowsher with 18 points.
The Blade/Lori King
Bowsher is expected to be pretty good this season with a roster that includes six seniors.
Dajuan King, a 6-foot-1 guard, is among the Rebels’ returners who figure to make a difference. He didn’t take long to make people take notice.
PHOTO GALLERY: Bowsher tops St. John's in early season thriller
The veteran playmaker nailed an off-balance jumpshot from 3-point territory as time expired to give Bowsher a 65-62 victory against visiting St. John’s Jesuit on Tuesday night.
King, who took the game-winning shot over the outstretched hands of Kaleb Vaughn, finished with a team-high 18 points.
“I thought it was off, that’s why I fell,” said Vaughn, recalling the final shot that drew cheers from the home crowd. “I was getting ready for overtime.”
The Rebels (1-1) outscored the Titans (0-2) by a 17-11 margin during the final quarter, erasing a three-point deficit.
The Rebels turned up the defensive pressure during the last eight minutes. They made a concerted effort to slow down St. John’s senior guard Anthony Glover, who was unstoppable for three quarters. He pumped in a game-high 27 points, but was held scoreless in the final quarter.
“I really like our defense in the second half,” Bowsher coach Joe Guerrero said. “We changed defenses, and that seemed to help [defending against Glover].
“We tried to make sure we could have a guy helping on him all the time because he was just making some incredible moves, and we had no one who could guard him one-on-one. We changed defenses, and it worked out. We tried to make other guys hit shots.”
St. John’s is still seeking its first win during the post-Marc Loving era.
Titans coach Ed Heintschel considered taking on the Rebels during the first week of the season as an opportunity for an inexperienced team to see where it stacked up.
“They’re an experienced team, and we played them here,” he said. “We have seven seniors, but we’re pretty inexperienced. Hopefully our guys came in here and learned something.
“We had some opportunities, but we have to show a little more grit at key times, especially at the defensive end and rebounding.”
King, who scored 10 of his points in the fourth quarter, was one of four Rebels to score in double figures.
Cameron White added 16 points, including three 3-pointers, while Mark Washington finished with 14 points and Nate Allen 11.
“It’s early in the season, and we know it’s early in the season,” Guerrero said. “St. John’s is going to be a good team. They lost a lot of guys from last year. They’ve got some good guys back, and Ed [Heintschel] is going to have them ready at the end of the year.
“I told our guys we’ve just got to keep improving. This is just one game.”
Vaughn added nine points and Trevor Walsh eight for St. John’s, which owned at least a three-point lead at the end of the first three quarters.
St. John’s opened the game by jumping out to a 10-1 lead.
The Titans closed out the first half with a 33-26 advantage, with Glover accounting for 15 points.
However, the Rebels regrouped at the break and outscored the Titans 39-29 in the second half.