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Davenport lifts Normandy over Lovejoy; Love's career night helps CBC down East St. Louis

Davenport lifts Normandy over Lovejoy; Love's career night helps CBC down East St. Louis

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EAST ST. LOUIS — The heat coming off Jamaray Davenport's hand could have melted the ice that was forming outside.

The Normandy High junior guard was locked in Saturday afternoon, blistering the nets each time down the court.

"I know my shot is lethal," Davenport said. "If I miss a few shots, I know I'm going to get that next one."

He didn't have to get, 'that next one,' a lot.

Davenport pumped in a game-high 35 points as Normandy downed Lovejoy 85-66 in the Martin Luther King Classic at East St. Louis High School.

"It's always good coming off the new year to get a win," Normandy coach Nate Griffin said.

Normandy (7-3) has won all 11 meetings with Lovejoy.

Davenport was 13-for-17 from the field including 9-for-12 from 3-point land.

"I expected us to be a little rustier today," Griffin said. "But we do have a few players that came back like 'Ray Davenport, who I think is one of the best shooters in the area that becomes instant offense."

Davenport missed his first shot, but never let it bother him. Lovejoy (11-9) threw everything short of the kitchen sink at Davenport, but it didn't slow the locked-in guard.

"There's not a lot you can do when a kid is on fire like that," Lovejoy coach Kim Haywood said.

Davenport's hot hand spread to the rest of the Vikings. Normandy shot 61 percent from the field and went 13-for-19 from 3-point range.

Davenport also handed out six assists.

Jamod Robinson added 18 points for the Vikings. Omarion Henry had 11 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

"Our team is gifted offensively, but our biggest thing is keeping them to one shot and keeping ball handlers out of the paint," Griffin said.

The Wildcats mounted a mini-run to chop the deficit to under 20 points, but the Vikings' offense picked up the pace to regain control.

"They were on fire tonight," Haywood said. "It was just not a good defensive effort tonight. We scored enough to win, but I think we just ran out of gas there at the end."

Keshawn Kent led Lovejoy with 17 points.

CAREER NIGHT FOR LOVE PUSHES CBC PAST EAST ST. LOUIS

Caleb Love sized up the defense. 

Everyone in the gym knew the future University of North Carolina guard was going to shoot.

And he didn't disappoint. 

Love sank the go-ahead shot as CBC defeated East St. Louis 68-62 in the final game on Saturday. 

"I saw the defense was backing up and sagging," Love said. "Once he reached, I pulled up."

CBC (9-6) picked up its fourth consecutive win over East St. Louis.

Love scored a career-high 42 points and helped erase a double-digit deficit. 

"We knew they were going to pressure me," Love said. "The game plan was to get to the cup and the free throw line. That was where the money came from. Teammates got me in the right position and coach put me in the right position."

East St. Louis (10-6) was outscored 22-11 in the final frame. The Flyers held a lead until the five-minute mark in the fourth quarter. 

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