Don’t look now, but the Natchitoches Central Chiefs are on a nine-game win streak after their home victory against Byrd. This was the first time this season the Chiefs have played a team back to back. After beating them on the road 72-62 the Chiefs returned home to defeat Byrd 58-45.
A layup from Devonta Snow and a 3 pointer from Aydrion Brown quickly gave the Chiefs an early 5-0 lead. The early lead had the entire gymnasium on their feet. Despite the early run, the Chiefs only led by five at the end of the first quarter 15-10. The second quarter is where the Chiefs started to run away with game. Defensively they found their groove; shutting down Byrd’s offense by forcing turnovers and bad shots.
The Chief’s defense forced 10 turnovers. Two steals from Brown were supported by multiple players, Snow, Nathan Curtis and Gerald Williams, each having one steal. Their defensive success in the second quarter led to Byrd only scoring six points while the Chiefs scored 19. Finishing the quarter on a 10-3 run, at the end of the first half the score was 34-16 Chiefs. In the beginning of the second half, it was evident the back to back games started to take a toll on the players. Only three players, Snow, Darius Young and Jaiden Hare, were shooting at least 50% from the field. Both teams shot under 40% for the night; Natchitoches Central at 38% and Byrd at 35%. The Chiefs continued dominating the Yellow Jackets defensively in the third only allowing nine points while scoring 13. They continued to force steals with three from Snow, and one each from Williams, Sean Lacour and Devin Robinson.
Although the Yellow Jackets outscored the Chiefs in the fourth, 20-11, the Chiefs’ lead was too much to overcome. The Chiefs finished the game with 58 points, shooting 38% from the field with 32 rebounds, five blocks and 16 steals. The Chiefs finished the game with only two players in double figures but had contributions from everyone offensively and defensively. Devonta Snow put up 18 points, eight rebounds, six steals and two blocks.
Darius Young had 12 points while Aydrion Brown had eight points, two rebounds and three steals. Jaiden Hare had four points, one rebound and two blocks. Nathan Curtis had four points, three rebounds and two steals. The Chiefs will travel to Haughton Tuesday, Feb. 18.