Entering this evening’s matchup both teams were looking to gain some leverage and move up one spot in their respective standings before the holiday break. Lincoln was looking to sweep King’s with a win today in their home gym, while King’s Christian was looking for revenge against the Huskies as they came up short at home in a wire-to-wire game last month (88-90).
Defending home court, the Huskies moved the ball well early giving them a 10 point lead halfway through the first quarter. King’s Christian Collegiate made it very difficult for themselves as they turned over the ball a total of seven times in the first quarter alone, which led to a Lincoln Prep basket on each trip down the court. With a combination of turnovers and tough early shot attempts, King’s put themselves in an early deficit at the end of the first quarter, 22-13.
A determined Huskies team continued where they left off in the first quarter, due to a combination of strong defensive plays and easy points in the paint led by both 6’7 F Tafari Simms and 6’10 F/C Lincoln Rosebush. 6’7 F Coleman Stucke and 6’2 G Jaylen Passley had impressive offensive performances in the second quarter for King’s Christian as they helped trim the Huskies 9-point lead to 3 points with six minutes to play in the first half. Their play inspired their teammates to pick up their play which helped King’s tie the game 35-35 with two minutes left in the first half, making it anyone’s game. But as a result of 6’2 PG Josh Noton’s late first half and-1, the huskies gained their momentum back heading into the second half with a 43-37 lead.
Although King’s Christian Collegiate came out the gate in the second half on a 5-2 run, Tafari Simms carried his team early in the third quarter as he proved to be a load to handle on the low block, getting himself to the free-throw line and finishing contested layups. However, the young scrappy Cavaliers refused to back down as both 6’5 G Luka Sakota and 6’7 F Coleman Stucke turned up their intensity on both ends of the floor. The Cavaliers gained control of the basketball game and captured a 2-point lead with 5 minutes to play in the quarter. Each team exchanged baskets late in the third quarter, keeping the contest even at 64, setting everyone up for another great fourth quarter just like their previous matchup.
The Huskies restored their lead early in the fourth quarter but due to consecutive Husky turnovers, King’s Christian once again picked up a 2-point lead. 6’5 G Luka Sakota and 6’7 F Coleman Stucke continued their scoring dominance in the fourth quarter giving the Cavaliers a 7-point lead; their largest lead of the game. The Lincoln Prep Huskies struggled to score as a team for most of the fourth quarter, which lead to an array of Cavaliers baskets on the other end of the floor, including a ferociously athletic put-back dunk by 6'7 F Alex Nwagha. Due to a pair of late missed free throws by King’s, the Huskies were able to fight their way back in the game. A key 3-pointer by 6'3 G Josh Primo with a 1:24 to play in the game trimmed the Cavaliers lead to 2-points. 6’5 G Luka Sakota’s game high 34 point performance was capped off a game-sealing block with 25 seconds remaining in the game helped give King’s Christian their first OSBA GOTW win in school history and move to 3-7 on the season. The Lincoln Prep Huskies fall to 4-5.
Lincoln Prep Huskies
6’7 F Tafari Simms - 20 points
6’3 G Josh Primo – 12 points
6’2 PG Josh Noton - 11 points
6’10 F/C Lincoln Rosebush -10 points
King’s Christian Collegiate
6’5 G Luka Sakota - 34 points
6’7 F Coleman Stucke - 18 points
6’2 G Jaylen Passley – 8 points
6’7 F Alex Nwagha - 8 points