Nobody's perfect -- not even a team that boasts a perfect record.
With an 87-43 win over Valley City Friday night, the Jamestown High School boys basketball team continued the perfect streak it began 368 days ago.
"It was an encouraging game," said JHS coach Jacoby Lloyd, referring to the Blue Jays' 28th win in a row dating back to the start of last season. "The encouraging part is that we can get better. It's encouraging that everybody in (the locker room) acknowledges the fact that we can become a better team and that they are willing to put that work in."
While the Jays outscored Valley City by more than the Hi-Liners' final score, Lloyd said his squad will need to become closer and build team chemistry in order to make a run in the playoffs come March.
"I thought we had way too many turnovers, allowed way too many offensive rebounds and we were playing kind of selfish offensively ... we didn't have near as many assists as we should," Lloyd admitted.
The 44-point margin of victory was led by recent North Dakota State University basketball commit Boden Skunberg. The 6-foot-5 senior guard sank a trio of 3-pointers and went 4 of 6 at the free-throw line scoring 25 points. Skunberg has the numbers and skills to continue the Jays' undefeated run, but Lloyd said there is work to do beyond the gym.
"He's growing with a whole new group of kids," Lloyd said. "He's played varsity basketball for four years. He's had a lot of seniors come and go and he's kind of been the consistent player for the last four years.
"He needs to grow and learn what his teammates' strengths are and his teammates need to learn how to play with him a little bit too because it's all-new for them as well."
It may be a new team entering the gym in the Blue Jay uniforms but numbers looked very similar to last season's state champion team.
Carson Lamp went 8 of 9 from the free-throw line and racked up 21 total points for the Blue Jays. Brooks Carroll drained four 3-pointers for 14 points, while Max Anderson also sank a pair of 3s. Jacob Hilgemann, Carson Kidd and Keith Levine rounded out the Jays' top-five scorers each with five points. One thing Lloyd said he was most proud of his team for doing was fighting through as a team.
"There were some tough moments tonight," Lloyd said. "Valley City played really hard and they never turned on each other.
"They were always positive and that's an encouraging thing from a coach. You don't want to see a team bickering or yelling at each other, you want them to encourage each other and look for the positives and move on to the next play."
Lloyd and his team will be back in action on Tuesday at Jerry Meyer Arena. The tipoff against Bismarck St. Mary's is scheduled for 7:45 p.m.
Jamestown 87, Valley City 43
VC 26 17 -- 43
J 42 45 -- 87
VC -- Peyton Zaun 12, Drew Zaun 9, Jared Eggermont 8, Adam Bitz 6, Mitchel Taylor 3, Derrek Diegel 3, Alex Thornton 2. Totals: 37 FG, 6-11 FT, 24 fouls (Alex Thornton). 3-pointers: Peyton Zaun 2, Mitchel Taylor.
J -- Boden Skunberg 25, Carson Lamp 21, Brooks Carroll 14, Max Anderson 6, Jacob Hilgemann 5, Carson Kidd 5, Keith Levine 5, Micah Hoke 2, Chase Finck 2, Emmanuel Kpahn 1, Devin Beach 1. Totals: 29 FG, 19-26 FT, 19 fouls (Shea Carroll). 3-pointers: Carroll 4, Skunberg 3, Anderson 2, Lamp.
Records: Jamestown 1-0, Valley City 0-1.