When the 3-pointers started adding up for Emmanuel Christian on Friday night, Legacy Christian couldn’t keep up.
“Hot! When you write that put a capital H-O-T,” Legacy coach Brad Newsome said. “They got hot and they continued to be hot.”
The Lions made eight 3-pointers in the first half to help build a 13-point lead. They finished with a season-high 12, dominated the second half and ended Legacy’s school-record 16-game winning streak for a 75-60 victory.
“Probably our best offensive game, and the second and third quarter was probably our best defensive effort,” Emmanuel coach Dan Moore said.
Casey Swank and Fred Shropshire led the 12-for-20 long-range brigade. Swank made four 3-pointers and scored 14 points. Shropshire made three and scored 17.
“We just keep shooting and we have a pretty good 3-point team,” Shrophshire said.
Adonis Davis scored 23 points to lead the Lions and Jason Channels added 13 points, five assists and four steals.
“We were just really hitting out shots, playing great defense and clicking,” Davis said. “We just really had that chemistry kicking.”
Shropshire’s consecutive 3-pointers and one by Luke Moore sparked a late first-quarter run to tie the score at 22. Shropshire made his last 3-pointer with 2:10 to go in the half to push the lead to 39-26. Then Davis and Swank made 3s for a 45-30 lead.
“The guys worked together, took great shots,” Moore said. “There was a certain point in the ballgame that they knew it was inevitable as long as we took care of things.”
The Lions’ defensive effort in the middle quarters contributed to the offense with some steals and layups and stalled Legacy, which was led by Keano Hammerstrom’s 20 points.
“After the first quarter, we really locked in more on defense,” Shropshire said. “We keep telling ourselves new game, game and focused on defense each quarter.”
Legacy (16-3, 10-1) still leads the Metro Buckeye Conference, and the Knights have been without star freshman Mike Sharavjamts for four games. He went home to Mongolia for family reasons but is expected to return the middle of this week. Sharavjamts, a 6-foot-6 guard, averages 10.8 points and 4.3 assists.
“Mike has been a security blanket for us, but these guys have worked their tails off since they’ve been freshmen and so we felt confident coming in with or without Mike,” Newsome said.
Newsome was impressed by how well ECA (12-4, 8-3) played. However, he hopes his team will return to the consistent effort he’s seen.
“Tonight we weren’t that consistent,” he said. “I’m choosing to believe that’s going to be a bump and not a standard.”
For Moore, it’s been the past two games and the week of practice in between that have boosted his belief that his team will be ready for another tournament run like last year’s that reached the district finals. “This is what I think we can be plus a little bit more,” he said.
Davis, the team’s senior leader, is right there with his coach.
“You never know what the future’s going to hold,” he said, “but if we keep this mindset we should be doing good.”