The Lyon County Lyons played a couple of heavyweights this past weekend at Jason White Gymnasium in Eddyville. On Friday night, Lyon County honored its seniors and hosted the Second Region co-favorite Hopkinsville Tigers. Surprisingly, the Lyons took control of the contest early and coasted to an 82-56 victory.
After a very brief 4-0 deficit, senior forward Nick Whalin scored seven consecutive points for the Lyons to kick start a big night for the Lyon seniors. The Lyons packed the paint with a tight 2-3 zone and dared the Tigers to shoot from the perimeter. The defensive strategy worked to perfection as Hopkinsville misfired shot after shot from distance. The Tigers converted only two field goal attempts the entire opening quarter of play. The Lyons had a slow opening quarter as well due to the initial physicality of the game, but they managed to take a 12-5 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The Lyons came out in the second quarter with the most spirited play that they have shown all season. The quarter belonged to the Lyons as sharp shooting sophomore guard Travis Perry took control of the game by scoring 14 of his game-high 30 points in the period. Lyon County’s offense was the precision of a Swiss clock and Hopkinsville had no answer to disrupt the Lyons’ rhythm. The Lyons outscored the Tigers 23-10 in the second frame and took with them into the locker room all of the game’s momentum and a commanding 35-15 advantage at the halfway mark.
Perry and Lyon big man Jackson Shoulders combined for 17 points in the third frame to keep the Lyons in the driver’s seat. The Tigers’ perimeter shooting was much better coming out of the locker room as they knocked down five shots from beyond the arc. Yet, the Lyons continued to push their lead to 63-36 after three quarters of play by outscoring the Tigers 28-21 in the quarter.
The Lyons extended their lead to 81-49 and Coach Ryan Perry put his reserves in the game to put the final 82-56 stamp on the contest. In addition to Perry’s 30 points, Lyon’s Shoulders recorded another double-double on the stat sheet with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Nick Whalin added 12 points and nine rebounds to the Lyon ledger. Hopkinsville’s junior guard DeTravious Leavell and senior forward Kensington Cabinness led the Tigers with 14 and 12 points respectively.
Lyon (82) — Perry 30, J. Shoulders 20, Whalin 12, B. Shoulders 8, Reddick 5, Bingham 4, Kirk 2, Radivonyk 1. Record: 19-5
Hopkinsville (56) – Leavell 14, Cabiness 12, Mercer 9, Williams 8, Smith 6, Johnson 5, White 2. Record: 16-5
Lyon County returned to the court Saturday night hosting the #9 state ranked Bowling Green Purples at the Ace Jam in Eddyville. Five games in six days finally took its toll on the young Lyons in the second half against the Purples. The Lyons became visibly leg weary and they eventually succumbed to the Purples 85-77 in a well-played contest.
Bowling Green sharp shooter Turner Buttry came into the game converting 49% of his 3-point attempts into baskets for the season, and he topped his normal marksmanship by making six of his 10 attempts from distance against the Lyons. Buttry, a potential Mr. Basketball candidate, and sophomore big man Elijah Starks did the most work to preserve the Purples’ Top 10 ranking. Buttry led the Purples with 28 big points and Starks recorded a double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds.
The Purples jumped on the Lyons in the opening quarter 20-12 with a balanced scoring attack in which six different players scratched the scoresheet. The Purples pushed their lead to 35-24 with approximately 3:00 left in the second quarter, but the Lyons clawed back within striking distance with a 12-3 run to close out the frame. Sophomore guard Travis Perry scored 10 consecutive Lyon points as part of the 12-3 run and the Lyons closed the gap to a two point deficit 38-36 at the halftime break.
Midway through the third quarter, Lyon County had fought all the way back from the 11 point deficit to a 46-46 tie. In the blink of an eye, Bowling Green nailed two shots from beyond the arc and a deep two point bucket to go back ahead 54-46 with 3:32 left in the period. The quick 8-0 run was the dagger to the heart of the Lyons and proved to be the difference in the ballgame. Lyon County played catch-up basketball the remainder of the game, but the Purples maintained their poise and protected the eight point lead until the final buzzer. With the 85-77 victory, Bowling Green improved their record to 22-4 for the season.
In addition to Buttry and Starks, the Purples had two other players hit double-figures with sophomore Makayelus Wardlow and freshman Deuce Bailey scoring 17 and 16 points respectively. Perry led the Lyons with 28 points and senior big man Jackson Shoulders recorded yet another double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore guards Brady Shoulders and Jack Reddick contributed 13 and 10 points respectively for the Lyons. The loss dropped the Lyons to 19-6 with four games remaining before the start of the district tournament.
Bowling Green (85) – Buttry 28, Wardlow 17, Bailey 16, Starks 14, Ritter 8, Gurly 2.
Lyon County (77) — Perry 28, J. Shoulders 21, B. Shoulders 13, Reddick 10, Whalin 2, Gilbert 2, Bingham 1.