HINCKLEY – The Hinckley-Big Rock boys basketball team picked up its fifth win of the season Wednesday, beating Paw Paw, 73-54.
The Royals started the game a bit flat, allowing Bulldogs point guard Michael Lampson to put up 18 points on six 3-pointers in the first half.
The second half was a completely different story, with the Royals building a big lead and holding Lampson to only one 3, which came in the final minute of the game with the outcome no longer in question.
“We just talk about how we have to keep our composure,” Royals coach Seth Sanderson said. “When we worry about ourselves, we are a lot better than when we worry about everybody else. ... Spencer Brown did a great job in the second half denying [Lampson].”
The Royals (5-11, 1-3 Little Ten Conference) had a balanced attack on offense. Tate Sanderson led the way with 16 points, going 8 for 9 from the free-throw line.
“I kinda let the game come to me,” Tate Sanderson said. “I like to find the open pass. I try not to be selfish. It’s better to get the win than put up your stats.”
Paw Paw (3-13, 1-2) was unable to get much going offensively outside of Lampson. A six-point third quarter ultimately did the Bulldogs in.
“We couldn’t adjust to the fast breaks,” Paw Paw coach David Glenn said. “I’d be willing to bet you that we had 15 turnovers tonight. ... I’m not taking anything away from their defense. I’m saying that we should hit those shots that we missed. We work on those in practice. ... We know what we need to do.”
By the numbers: After only leading 38-32 at halftime, the Royals opened up the game by going on a 15-6 run in the third quarter. At one point in the fourth, the Royals led by 25 points before the Bulldogs were able to convert trips to the free-throw line into points.
Beyond the stats: Momentum swung rapidly at the end of the first quarter. Lampson hit a spot up 3 with a little more than four seconds left. That’s when Brown took the inbounds pass for the Royals and hit a transition 3 right before the buzzer sounded to make the score 20-15.
They said it: “We’ve been finally starting to put it together over the last week or so,” Seth Sanderson said.
Up next: The Royals will host La-
Moille at 7 p.m. Friday. Paw Paw will host Earlville-Leland at 7 p.m. Friday.