By: Jacob Medley, Student Sports Reporter
It seems like the most asked question of today has been, “Did you go to the game yesterday?”, and if you were there… you’d know why. If you weren’t, you missed a good one. The Alice Lloyd Eagles started the season off right with an 87-75 win against the Knights of Kentucky Christian University on Tuesday, November 3rd.
The game was played at the Grady Nutt Athletic Center, and you could definitely tell that the home crowd was ready for basketball action. A victorious Coach JR Hammond commented on the great fan support. “Last night was one of the top three playing atmospheres that I’ve been in as a coach. The team played with a lot of heart and their effort was great. They played with so much aggression because of the hype that the fan base brought to the game. They truly are our 6th man, and we really appreciate that.”
The first half got off to an equal start with both teams trading field goals. It wasn’t until around the 9 minute mark that the Eagles made a jump on the Knights. The Eagles shared the wealth as Cody Stumbo (11 pts), Braxton Blair (10 pts), and Shane Hall (7 pts) were all key reasons that the Eagles took an 18 point lead going into the half.
In the second half, KCU came out of the locker room firing on all cylinders. They hit three consecutive long bombs, and that ultimately is what put them back into the game. Fortunately for the home club, KCU couldn’t answer the depth that Alice Lloyd brought off of the bench.
“They aren’t fully developed yet this early in the season, but the effort and aggression is there” stated Coach Hammond. “Once we get the little things sorted out, we’ll transition from being a good team to a great one. On the defensive side, we played really aggressive, but some things will be fixed. Our defensive transition needs to be better, and so does our back side help. It’s still early in the season though. The team is looking a lot better already than they have in previous years.”
The Eagles placed six players in double figures led by Blair with 16 and Stumbo with 14. Deondre Warren added 12 while Tyler Rogers contributed 11. Trevor Tiller and Austin Crisp each added 10. Crisp handed out a game high 7 assists. Rogers added 5 rebounds and 8 big blocks, while freshman Shane Hall tossed in 9 points, led the team with 7 rebounds, and swatted 3 shots of his own.
The victorious coach added, “Having players like Braxton Blair, Dondre Warren, Trevor Combs, and Jake Allen come into the game really helps us out, and their performance just goes to show how deep our bench really is. I don’t think we’ll play a team that can use the bench as effectively as we do.”