(Photo by Chris Pobst, Staff)
SIKESTON -- The Charleston Bluejays wanted to make sure they didn't fall into any bad habits.
The Bluejays, who's only habit has been winning lately, didn't.
The SEMO Conference Tournament's top seed blitzed the Dexter Bearcats for the second time in a week Monday, 74-23, to advance to the semifinal round of the conference tournament at the Sikeston Field House.
Charleston will play Notre Dame at 7 p.m. Thursday for a chance to reach the finals once again.
"The most important thing in a game like this is to not form bad habits," Charleston head coach Danny Farmer said. "You've got to see every team as a challenge and we wanted to see it as a challenge so we can develop a killer instinct. You've got to have that killer instinct and be able to destroy people, regardless of how good they are."
The Bluejays, who are looking to defend their SEMO Conference crown from a year ago, wasted no time putting the eighth seeded Bearcats away.
It was the same formula they used last week against Dexter coming away with a 70-27 win at the Bearcat Event Center on Tuesday. Relentless pressure, picked off passes and easy transition buckets was the culprit yet again that downed the Bearcats.
"I was pleased with our defense," Farmer said. "We were able to put some pressure on them. Offensively, we shot it okay."
Charleston cruised out to a 22-5 lead after the first six minutes. They held a 29-5 advantage after the first quarter.
The Bluejays, who are 4-0, went up 48-12 at halftime putting the game well in hand.
"We wanted to make sure we played hard so it would carry over into the next game," said Farmer. "The only thing we could do is just make sure we stick to the things that we do well."
Charleston senior Ryan Parham led the Bluejays, who had 11 players score, with 12 points. Darrion Carter added 11 and Shandor Webster scored 9.
Dexter's Nick Noble and Ryan Joyner each had five points to lead the Bearcats, who have had a brutal first three games.
The Bearcats (0-3) played Charleston twice and Sikeston Friday losing 55-23. Dexter will play Jackson tonight on the consolation side of the bracket at 6 p.m.
DEXTER (23) -- Nick Noble 5, Austin Richardson 4, DJ Dowdy 3, Austin Aldridge 2, Brad Potts 2, Jordan Miller 2, Ryan Joyner 5. FG 8 FT 5-6 F 11. (3-pointers: Noble 1, Richardson 1, Dowdy 1. Fouled out: none.)
CHARLESTON (74) -- Delfinko Bogan 4, Will Davis 6, Robert Bogan 4, Ryan Parham 12, Michael Hull 8, Michael Kellum 7, Darrion Henderson 4, Sumner Foster 8, Shandor Webster 9, Darrion Carter 11, Michael Coleman 1. FG 33 FT 4-9 F 5. (3-pointers: Parham 1, Hull 1, Kellum 1, Webster 1. Fouled out: none.)