Carr leads Trojan boys to first victory of 2013
Some days you just can’t miss.
For Fairfield junior Matt Carr, that day was Tuesday.
Carr connected on four 3-pointers and scored a career-high 18 points to steer the Fairfield boys to their most dominant performance of the season, a 54-28 rout of Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont at FHS Gymnasium.
“Offensively it’s what we expect out of Matt. Everybody on the team expects him to do what he did tonight, we’re just waiting for him to believe it,” Fairfield head coach Tyler Miklo said. “He was confident and made some great shots.”
It took a while for Carr to get going Tuesday. Once he did, there was no looking back.
The junior went scoreless in the first quarter before scoring five points in the second. With the game still anyone’s at the start of the third, Carr rattled off eight straight points with a pair of 3s to hand Fairfield a 26-11 lead. Five more points in the final period wrapped up his career day.
Carr knew it was going to be a good day even before the opening tip-off.
“In warm-ups I made everything, so I think it was just my day,” the starting guard said.
The win was the second of the season for the 2-7 Trojans, and it was their first win since welcoming in the new year. It also snapped a two-game win streak for the Rockets, who are 6-5 this winter.
“That was as complete of a game as we’ve played all year,” said Miklo. “Obviously there were a few things in there we need to clean up, but I think that was definitely a step in the right direction.”
The Trojans also had one of their best defensive efforts of the season, as they held the visiting Rockets to zero points in the first quarter and a football-like six points by halftime. The Rockets came into the game averaging nearly 55 points per game.
Carr said his team’s approach on defense was to contain Eddyville’s leading scorers Trevor Swartz, Christian Bambrook and Trevor Leffler. Bambrook, who averages over 18 points per game, scored just eight.
“We stopped their best players, and that was big. They’re averaging over half their points, so we knew it was important to stop them.”
Buckets by Vince Horras and Spencer Peterman gave Fairfield a 4-0 lead midway through the first, and Darrin Dimmitt and Jordan Reid also made a pair of baskets for an 8-0 lead at the end of the quarter.
Although the Rockets scored the first four points in the second period, Carr ended the run with a long 2 and subsequent 3-pointer. Peterman and Landon Gamrath both made buckets in the closing 1:30 to take a 17-6 lead into halftime.
Miklo said he knew a quick start would be important against Eddyville.
“After the weekend we had, it was really important to put it behind us. We’ve made it a point of trying to start the games off strong, and we did a good job of that,” the coach said.
The Trojans didn’t let up in the second half, either.
Dimmitt scored the first point out of the locker room on a free throw, and Carr kept Fairfield up big with a pair of free throws and two straight 3s. Horras hit a short shot and Peterman closed the quarter with Fairfield’s final four points.
Up 33-17 after three, Gamrath opened the final eight-minute stretch with a short jumper, Carr connected on his fourth trey and later drove to the rim for a layup. Joe Hietpas, Peterman, Reid and Gamrath all scored buckets in the final two minutes to add onto the decisive 54-28 final.
While the win was nice, Carr said the Trojans won’t be satisfied until they’re able to string together several games like Tuesday’s.
“We’ve got to get on a roll, we’ve got to get on a win streak,” the junior said. “We want to try to get a home game in the playoffs, so it’s important we get these wins.”
In addition to Carr’s 18 points, Peterman finished with 11 points and Dimmitt scored seven. Gamrath totaled six points, and Horras and Reid scored four apiece. Hietpas supplied six assists.
Another stiff test awaits the Trojans (2-7, 1-2 SEC) Friday when they host defending state champion Mount Pleasant.
Fairfield vs. E-B-F
E-B-F — 0 6 11 11 — 28
FAIRFIELD — 8 9 16 21 — 54
FAIRFIELD — Carr 18, Peterman 11, Dimmitt 7, Gamrath 6, Horras 4, Reid 4, Hietpas 2, Greiner 1