The Lynchburg-Clay Mustangs hosted the Fairfield Lions on Friday in a tightly contested Southern Hills Athletic Conference (SHAC) and Highland County rivalry game. The Mustangs rallied after the first quarter to claim the 74-62 victory.
The Lions came out on fire in the first quarter led by Tucker Ayres and Wyatt Willey as each hit two three pointers in the opening frame. Fairfield also pressured the Mustangs well in the first quarter and forced several turnovers on their way to a 25-17 lead after one.
In the second quarter Lynchburg-Clay opened with an 18-2 run and took the lead at 35-27. The Lions closed the quarter with a four to nothing run to trail by four at the half 35-31.
Fairfield head coach Josh Howland reflected on the change in aggressiveness by his team in the second quarter. “We came out and were timid in the second quarter. Lynchburg came out and they wanted it more. They played aggressively and that was the difference,” said Howland.
Fairfield came out of the halftime break and went on a 7-2 run in the first two minutes to take a 38-37 lead. However, the Mustangs were able to shore up their defense after the initial spurt and closed the quarter on a 14-5 run to take a 51-43 lead into the final period.
The Lions were able to get the lead down to eight points on several occasions in the fourth quarter but Lynchburg-Clay was able to hold and hit their free throws down the stretch to secure the win.
Lynchburg-Clay head coach Matt Carson took the time to give credit to the Fairfield coach after the game. “They are a very good basketball team. Very well coached, I hope that people over there realize just how great of a job Josh is doing. I can’t believe we are going to do this again in a month,” Carson said.
The Fairfield Lions will be back in action today when they travel to Cedarville for a non-conference tilt. On Tuesday the Lions will hostthe Tigers of McClain in a cross-county rivalry matchup. Finally on Friday the Lions will host the Greyhounds of Manchester in SHAC basketball action.
The Lynchburg-Clay Mustangs will also be in action today when they travel to Western Brown to take on the Broncos. On Tuesday the Mustangs will be looking to avenge their season opening loss when they host the Ripley Blue Jays in SHAC action. To close out the week Lynchburg will travel to West Union to take on the Dragons in yet another SHAC game.
Lynchburg-Clay: Walker 1-2/2-4; Pierson 3-10/11-16; Young 1-2; McLaughlin 10(2)-3/4-29; Hilt (1)-2/2-5; Conner 8-16; Smith 1-2
Fairfield: Gragg 3(2)-3/5-15; Setty 1-0/2-2; Buddlemeyer 5-0/1-10; Willey 1(2)-8; Irvin 2-1/2-5; Ayres 6(2)-18; Beatty 2-4
Reach Ryan Applegate at 937-402-2572, or on Twitter @RCApplegate89.