West Lincoln Bears win 2 over Centreville Academy

Published 5:10 pm Friday, January 12, 2024

The West Lincoln Bears were the only show in town on Thursday night in area high school basketball action as they welcomed MAIS member school Centreville Academy to Jack Case Gymnasium.

The home team won both games with a 54-26 victory in the opening girls’ game and a 61-43 win in the boys’ contest.

Both Centreville teams are coached by former Brookhaven Academy assistant coach Brett Rutland.

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Rutland took over the boys’ program at CA last year and then inherited the girls’ team about a week before this season began.

West Lincoln closed the first half on a 35-4 run to lead 46-14 at halftime. That run came after a bucket by CA cut the West Lincoln advantage to 11-10 midway through the first quarter.

West Lincoln girl’s coach Lane Young saw his team get a game high 13 points from senior forward Alexis Johnson. Sophomore guard Chloe Sterling added 11 points and senior Preslee Rushing was also in double figures with 10 points. Senior Gabby Evans and junior Maggy James scored seven points each for the Bears. Sophomore Elizabeth Burton added four points and junior Emma Quin rounded out the WL scoring with two points.

West Lincoln moved to 11-5 with the win. The Bears currently sit second in Region 7-2A with wins over Loyd Star (40-24) and Wilkinson County (50-17) and a loss to Bogue Chitto (58-33).

The boy’s game was a closer affair, but ended up with West Lincoln head coach Jay Case and his team winning a second straight game on the week after they defeated Wilkinson County 54-27 on Tuesday.

The WL boys’ team is now 7-9 after the victory.

If you are a fan of fouls, then the boys’ matchup on Thursday was a real treat as the teams combined to commit 52 of them.

John Austin Sterling of CA attempted 22 free throws, of which he made nine. Sterling led the Tigers with 15 points in the loss.

The game was tied 22-22 at halftime and the home team took control in the third quarter by outscoring Centreville 20-9 in that period.

It looked like West Lincoln was on cruise control at the start of the fourth, but turnovers led to a 6-0 run by the Tigers and forced Case to call a timeout as his team’s lead had been trimmed to 50-41 with 4:23 remaining in regulation.

Senior center Zackary Taylor led West Lincoln with 18 points in the win. The 6-foot-4 Taylor was the biggest player on the court by far and had several baskets come on putbacks of his own shots.

Junior Jai’Juan Fells added 11 points and senior Carson Temple chipped in 10 points for the Bears. West Lincoln was playing without junior guard Ty Terrell after he suffered an injury in practice the day prior.

Other scorers for West Lincoln included junior Dereon Eley with eight points, freshman Maddux Johnson with six points and junior Amias Smith with four points. Freshman Daquavion Lewis and senior Cevonte Lewis scored two points each to round out the scoring for the Bears.

West Lincoln will return the game by playing at Centreville on Jan. 30. Next up for the Bears is a trip to Liberty to face the Amite County Trojans on Tuesday in another Region 7-2A matchup.