Chouteau handed Adair their first loss of the season in the second round of the Adair Invitational Tournament Friday.
The 51-41 win puts the Wildcats in the championship game.
Prior to tip off, Chouteau Head Coach Travis Wheeler said his game plan depended upon his team’s execution in key areas.
He reiterated consistent dribble penetration, trips to the free throw line and aggressive defense to his squad.
The group carried out the instruction, resulting in a lead from start to finish.
Coming away with victory, however, was an uphill battle.
Adair’s similar game approach kept the Wildcats lead marginal and threatened a reversal of fortune until less than a minute remained on the game clock.
Chouteau senior point guard Jason Couch penetrated the lane repeatedly, finding open teammates with the pinpoint accuracy.
The only difference between Couch's’ play and Adair senior point guard Brady Bradbury’s was the color of their uniforms.
Both point guards of the similar looking teams sought fast break points relentlessly.
Chouteau went through spurts of offensive board domination, and Adair followed suit beginning near the end of the second.
The Warriors got to the stripe seven times by halftime and shot 66 percent.
Chouteau got to the line four times and shot 57 percent.
The Wildcats were effective at keeping Adair senior forward Jordan Fleming, a regular top-scorer, from getting into rhythm.
A rowdy Chouteau fan-base didn’t affect Bradbury’s performance. A three-pointer at the buzzer to cut Chouteau’s lead to four suggested the guard’s veins run with ice-water.
However Chouteau’s fourth quarter play became the difference by way of balanced ball movement and capitalizing on easy buckets.
Chouteau senior Jordan Shive gave the Adair defense fits.
Shive penetrated inside and back out at will, finding the open man in perfect timing, and scoring from nearly every location in succession.
Wheeler said Shive has been a reliable contributor this year, averaging around ten points a game.
“Tonight was a game to get the lid off for him,” Wheeler said.
Chouteau sophomore Isaac Carter led scoring with 14 points.
Chouteau moves to 4-2 on the year.
The Wildcats are scheduled for part 2 of a growing inter-county rivalry Dec. 14 in Chouteau’s house.