By CHRIS MACKINDER
WINAMAC — For the third time in three weeks, the Lewis Cass basketball team entered the second of two weekend games following a loss.
And for the third time in three weeks, the Kings shook off fatigue and rebounded with a victory.
Saturday’s was one of the easier ones as the hot-shooting Kings cruised to a 53-37 win over Winamac.
“To come back and win all three Saturdays, that’s a tribute to the kids,” said Lewis Cass coach Basil Mawbey, whose team defeated Winamac for the sixth straight time. “Tonight we played on their home court and they are playing really well right now.”
The Kings (9-6) couldn’t miss early in the game, hitting three triples in both the first and second quarters and finishing with nine threes for the game. And it wasn’t just one person.
Taylor Bowser, Devin Foreman and Garrett Segraves all were firing from long range and, as a result, all three scored in double figures. Bowser finished with a game-high 15 points and nine rebounds, Foreman added 11 while Segraves and Johnathan Metcalf each chipped 10.
Mawbey praised Segraves’ floor leadership as the junior point guard had four assists, three steals and no turnovers. He also said the teams balance was a big key to the win.
“Johnathan Metcalf, tonight he had his best game of the year,” Mawbey said. “Taylor had a good game as well but he got into foul trouble early and we had to sit him down.”
Lewis Cass harassed Winamac’s shooters all evening long. Playing in their patented 2-3 zone the Kings didn’t allow the Warriors (2-15) to get off to a good shooting start.
“I thought we did a good job knowing where their shooters were,” Mawbey said. “They have four outstanding three-point shooters — their center (Matt Garling) is the best. It really extends out defense.”
But neither Garling nor the rest of his teammates could sink a triple in the opening half as the Warriors were 0-for-9 from three-point range.
“They’ve got a solid defense and we stood around too much in the first half,” Winamac coach Alan Huggler said. “We made their zone look even better.”
It was the best offensive performance for Winamac in the teams’ last four meetings. Lewis Cass had held Winamac to 21, 19 and 18 points, respectively the past three meetings.
But from the start, it looked like another low-scoring game was in store.
After the Warriors scored the game’s first basket a couple minutes in, the Kings offense and defense picked up. Bowser hit a pair of triples and Segraves drained another at the buzzer to put the Kings up 15-6 after the first quarter.
Again, Winamac struck first in the second quarter but back-to-back triples by Foreman and Bowser stole back the momentum. Garling hit a layup with six minutes to play in the quarter, but that was Winamac’s last basket of the half as Cass led 28-10 at the break.
Winamac netted the first bucket after halftime but it still didn’t slow down Cass which led 41-18 after three quarters.
The Warriors scored 19 points total in the final frame — eight straight at one point — to mount a small comeback but it wasn’t enough.
Garling led Winamac with 13 points while Evan Howe added 10 — all in the fourth quarter. Wade Shidler chipped in seven for the Warriors.
“They frustrated us into taking bad shots and we got out of rhythm,” Huggler said. “And then we got down early and we panicked. But we didn’t quit. We kept battling.”
By CHRIS MACKINDER