DANVILLE — Making the extra pass and sharing the basketball was a priority this week during practice for Danville Area Community College men’s basketball.
“We have a bunch of talented offensive guys,’’ DACC first-year coach DaJuan Gouard said. “It’s hard with having a new team and them learning how to use their teammates. We worked on that all week and we punished them when they didn’t pass the ball to the open guy.’’
But, the truest proof that the lesson was learned came in Saturday’s game against Moraine Valley.
Danville Area Community College had 22 assists on its 32 baskets and nine of the 10 Jaguars that played in the 90-56 victory over the Cyclones had at least one assist.
“Yeah, I didn’t even noticed that,’’ Gouard said. “Most of these guys with an assist don’t usually get any.
“We wanted to make sure that the open guy was taking the shot instead of someone else taking a contested shot.’’
Former Danville High standoug D’Lando Carter was the beneficiary of several of those assists as the 6-foot-2 sophomore guard scored a season-high 31 points, including 19 in the first half.
“The credit for that goes to my teammates,’’ said Carter, who did have one assist. “I had the open shots and I was able to knock them down.’’
Carter said the extra practice this week on passing and sharing the basketball made a difference in Saturday’s game against last year’s NJCAA Division II National Runner-up.
“That was a big part of what we did in practice all week,’’ he said. “We need to work on the little things like passing and screening. When you do those things well, it make the offense run a lot smoother.’’
And while the improved play was a confidence booster for the Jaguars (4-6), getting that first home victory was also a good thing.