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Boys Basketball: West Columbus 74, West Bladen 58

CERRO GORDO – Junior Brandis Kelly and senior Winston Mason combined for 11 points to spark a 20-7 closing run that sealed a 74-58 Three Rivers Conference boys basketball victory for West Columbus over West Bladen.

Knight senior Tyre Boykin nailed a 3-point shot then sent a pass to junior Josh Lewis for a lay-up that pulled West Bladen to within 54-51 with 7:15 left to play.

Kelly responded with 3 free throws and a follow shot, and Mason popped in a 15-footer and a lay-up as the lead ballooned to 66-51, before Boykin flipped in a runner and 2 lay-ups.

Boykin topped the Knight scoring with 25 points, and junior Shy’Ron Adams finished with 9 points and 5 rebounds. Lewis followed with 6 points. Senior Nolan Bryant grabbed 6 rebounds and scored 4 points. Senior Xayvon Davis totaled 4 points, 8 rebounds and 3 blocked shots. Senior Nijeah McKoy added 4 points.

Kelly posted a double-double of 16 points and 15 rebounds to lead the Vikings, and senior guard Tyquawn Johnson hit four 3-point shots and tallied 16 points. Mason finished with 12 points, and Keywone Sumpter scored 10.

The Vikings turned 3 steals into 2 lay-ups and a Kelly dunk to grab an early 6-0 lead. Boykin answered with a 3-pointer and a high-arching runner to trim the margin to 6-5. Johnson flipped in a runner then drilled in 3 straight 3-point shots for a 16-6 WC lead.

Lewis interrupted the run with a 3-point bomb, and Boykin netted 3 free throws, but the Vikings rode a pair of Mason follow shots to a 26-12 lead at the quarter break.

The Viking lead reached 31-12, before Davis hit a free throw, Boykin tossed in a runner, and McKoy stole the ball and raced for a lay-up. Adams attacked the basket for a 3-point play then banked in a runner that sliced the lead to 31-22. Bryant muscled in a follow to keep the Knights within 35-24 at halftime.

A trio of Boykin free throws, another Bryant follow shot and an Adams baseline jumper kept West within 46-31. Boykin banked in a leaner, Davis dropped in a follow, and Adams buried a 3-point shot. Freshman Gary Parker stole the ball and dashed for a lay-up, and junior Donovan Stone drained a 3-point shot to close the gap to 48-43 with 1:50 remaining in the period.

Sumpter drove for a 3-point play, then turned a Kelly assist into a lay-up and 54-43 lead. Boykin canned a free throw then dished a pass to Davis for a lay-up that whittled the lead to 54-46 at the break.

“We made a lot of defensive mistakes in the first half,” said Knight Coach Travis Pait. “We fought back and cut it to 3 points, but I wasn’t happy with our defensive rotations.” Four straight Knight turnovers ignited the Viking closing run.

The Knights, now 5-15, will host St. Pauls Friday night.

West Bladen        12  12  22  12 – 58
West Columbus  26    9  19  24 – 74

WEST BLADEN (58) – Gary Parker 2, Josh Lewis 6, Shy’Ron Adams 9, Tyre Boykin 25, Donovan Stone 4, Deonte Lacy, Tra’shawn Ballard, Nijeah McKoy 4, Xayvon Davis 4, Nolan Bryant 4.

WEST COLUMBUS (78) – Tyquawn Johnson 16, Marquise Ratliff 3, Tyvon Tyler 7, Brandis Kelly 16, Winston Mason 12, Keywone Sumpter 10, Darrius Marshall 2, Naqiis Johnson 8, Justin Conner.

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