PREP BASKETBALL

LMA girls, WH boys lose on Friday, in tourney openers; Lady Barons, Swampcats play in semis on Monday

By EDDIE LITAKER
Special to The Sumter Item
Posted 2/9/19

With seedings pretty much set heading into the SCISA Region III-3A tournament that was set to begin on Saturday in Orangeburg, the focus was a little different for two of the four varsity teams …

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PREP BASKETBALL

LMA girls, WH boys lose on Friday, in tourney openers; Lady Barons, Swampcats play in semis on Monday

Posted

With seedings pretty much set heading into the SCISA Region III-3A tournament that was set to begin on Saturday in Orangeburg, the focus was a little different for two of the four varsity teams heading into play Friday as Wilson Hall and Laurence Manning Academy closed out regular-season play at Nash Student Center.

LMA's girls and Wilson Hall's boys were focused on their individual games against their respective archrivals on Friday, but both were also looking at a quick turnaround at Orangeburg Prep. Both also faced mighty tasks as their Friday opponents were dwelling in the upper ranks of the region standings.

Wilson Hall boys head coach Eddie Talley watched as his team lost 62-48 to LMA. And on Saturday, the Barons lost to Florence Christian School as well, 41-35, to fall to 6-14 on the season.

Graham Van Patten led Wilson Hall with 10 points, while Grey Holler, Grant DeVarona and Landon VanPatten had six points apiece.

The LMA girls lost to Wilson Hall 71-39 on Friday and fell to Orangeburg Prep 27-17 on Saturday. The Lady Swampcats fell to 6-15.

That sets up the semifinals of the Region III tournament on Monday at Sumter County Civic Center. The Wilson Hall girls will meet Trinity-Byrnes at 3:30 p.m. followed by the LMA boys taking on Orangeburg Prep at 5 p.m. The other girls semi will have Florence Christian taking on OP at 6:30 p.m., while Trinity-Byrnes will meet FCS in the other boys semifinal at 8.

in the LMA-Wilson boys game, the teams exchanged six runs of at least 7-0. The Barons' streaks went 7-0, 8-0 and 10-0 while the Swampcats answered Wilson Hall's 4-0 early lead with a 10-0 run and later went on a 17-0 stretch from the second quarter into the third and outscored the Barons 16-0 from late third quarter into the fourth before Wilson Hall's final 10-0 run before a Lawrence Fraser 3-point basket with seven seconds left closed the scoring.

Wilson Hall's largest lead came right out of the blocks as Chandler Scott, who led the Barons with 16 points, and Landon Van Patten scored the game's first two baskets for the 4-0 lead. LMA's biggest cushion came after its late 16-0 run which built a 59-38 advantage ahead of the Barons' final run.

Umar Lawson scored 19, followed by Chase Lee with 13 and Jake Jordan with 12 for the Swampcats, who evened their record at 12-12 and advanced to 5-3 in region.

On the girls side, LMA faced an uphill battle all night, falling 71-39 in a game where Wilson Hall held a 21-10 lead after one quarter and bookended that effort with a 21-8 edge in the final quarter.

Lady Swampcats head coach Gary Bennett has seen his young team, paced by Katherine Burns' 10 points on Friday, battle hard in region play but have no wins to show for their effort.

Bennett felt his team still had a good attitude and will to win heading into possibly its final game of the season on Saturday

"They're still happy, they're still having fun, they understand they're young," Bennett said. "This Orangeburg team, they beat us, I think, by a total of seven points in two games, so it's not like we haven't been in the fight."

Wilson Hall's fast start was powered by four 3-pointers in the opening quarter, including one by leading scorer Natalie Jackson, who finished with 17 points. Maddie Elmore, who closed with 11, and Liza Segars sank three treys apiece, while Susanna Hutson hit two from long range in the opening quarter. Sydney Jarecki added three first-quarter buckets and ended with 10 for the Lady Barons, who improved to 18-3,

"After the (32-24) loss to Florence Christian (on Tuesday), we were disappointed with the way we started," said WH head coach Glen Rector. "We came out and played well defensively; the difference was we hit our shots early in this game."