In Dec. 11 IssueBy Derek AaronTimes Journal Sports Editor
The Russell County Lakers defeated a scrappy Somerset Briar Jumper team 72-63 Tuesday night to move to 3-0 on the young season.
Led by senior guard Bryon Ellis’ 20 points, nine rebounds and six assists, the Lakers maintained their poise throughout the game and held on in the end to win it.
“We had five kids in double figures, which is good balance,” Coach Willie Feldhaus said. “We can’t depend on Bryon to get 20 or 25 points every night so our guys have to step up like that against some good teams and I consider, after playing them, that Somerset is a good team.”
The Briar Jumpers never backed down, cutting the Laker lead to as little as four points with only a few minutes remaining.
“We never could push the lead out to where we could get into a comfort zone,” Feldhaus said. He said Somerset was probably one of the quickest teams his Lakers will face all year. “They were very athletic,” he said.
Feldhaus said he was upset with his team during the first half and was frustrated at how his team handled the Briar Jumpers’ pressure the first 16 minutes.
“I don’t think we were as quick as they were but I think we were as aggressive as they were and I think we’re going to have to be against those types of teams,” he said.
Feldhaus said he was proud the way his team responded to him and came out and played an inspiring second half of basketball.
Both Robbie Bell and Zach Carney scored 11 points each for the Lakers while Bryson McFall and Adam Justice both scored 10 apiece.
Lucas Justice tallied six points for the Lakers while Kyle Burchett and Bryce Bailey each added a bucket.
“You can’t win them all if you don’t win the first three,” Feldhaus said.