After a loss to Liberty Hill yesterday, the Leander Lions bounced back nicely to beat Burnet 83-56 in a high scoring matchup.
“We just came back and needed to respond,” Leander senior guard David Bonner said. “We recognized what we did wrong at the Liberty Hill, and we just responded and came back strong.”
In the first quarter, the Lions led 14-9. Junior forward Kobe Thompson paced the Lions with seven points in the quarter. Junior guard JP Stevens connected on a three pointer early in the quarter, while junior forward Chase Cotton and Bonner both added some scoring help.
Senior forward Michael Berry said the team felt good about the result.
“We were real pleased with what we did,” he said. “We really tried to respond after the loss at Liberty Hill, so this was well expected.”
At the half, the Lions led 31-17 after Stevens made another three pointer, and sophomore small forward Dalton Flowers scored six points. For Burnet, only two players scored in the quarter, Graves with six points, and Herrera with two.
Leander coach Clint Bradley said the team was focused on playing the entirety of the game with full effort.
“We feel pretty good,” he said. “We talked about playing a full four complete quarters, which we didn’t do against Liberty Hill. So, we were able to do that tonight, and have a strong third quarter after half time, which we were pleased to see as well.”
Heading into the fourth quarter, the Lions continued to dominate with a 65-36 lead. Bonner had nine points in the third quarter, topping his night off with 11 points. Stevens made another three pointer in the third period, and finished the game with nine.
Bonner said the win helped the team refocus after yesterday’s loss.
“We are feeling good,” Bonner said. “Taking care of these three wins has really helped us out, and we just gotta get back on track from our Liberty Hill loss and we’ll be good.”
Berry finished the game with 10 points, and Flowers scored a team high of 12. Silva and Cotton both added nine points in the win. Burnet’s Graves was the sole focus of the Bulldogs offense, contributing a game-high of 23 points.
The players who just finished up the football season still have some catching up to do, Berry said, and everyone is motivated to keep improving as a group in practice.
“We’re going to keep practicing hard,” Berry said. “We’re going to condition. Coach just said earlier that he’s going to get the football guys back up to speed, really try to keep us going, and get our conditioning up, and try to keep our shots together, and just keep learning how to play together as a team.”
The Lions will have a few tournaments to go to before facing off against Belton on December 7. They will go to the Jack Frost Tournament at Georgetown, the weekend of December 5. Burnet will go on to face Marble Falls December 1.
“For the Georgetown tournament, we are going to do what we always do,” Bradley said. “We’re going to come in, expect hard work at practice to improve daily, we are going to make sure we’re making huge improvements defensively, and rebound the basketball, and we should be in good shape.”
Jack Densmore is a senior at Leander High School participating in the Texas Top 100 Academy for Young Writers program. He also serves as the editor-in-chief for the LHS online newspaper. Follow him on Twitter at @densmorejack.