Silver Knights Knock Down Roane County
Tyler Consolidated stood tall Feb. 22, at home, in an LKC placement game, with a 60-48 win over a good Class AA Roane County high school basketball team.
The Knights started the game on top when Tyler West got an easy tip-in on a missed basket to go up 2-0. Roane County scored the next five points, but the Knights persevered and tied the game at five on a three-pointer from Griffin Phillips. Both teams battled back and forth, and at the end of one quarter, Roane led by three, 15-12. Kyle Mason banked in a big three-point shot near the end of the quarter to get the Knights close.
With Coach Rick Leach subbing freely and keeping fresh legs in the game, the Knights pressure defense started to take its toll on the visitors. The Silver Knights got a big second quarter from Dylan Roberts who knocked in a three, hit two jumpers in the lane, and a pair of free throws for nine points in the frame. He twice shot over the outstretched arms of Roane’s 6’8” center. Also stepping up big, off the bench, in the period was Mark Wilson, who hit a long three over a defender and then went to the basket strong for another bucket. Nate Lancaster added a basket in the second with a nice move that froze two defenders, giving him an easy look. The Knights used the 16-9 second quarter to go into the locker room up four, 28-24.
Coming out for the second half, Roane scored the first eight points to take a 32-28 lead. The Silver Knights took a time out, regrouped, and then came out hitting on all-cylinders. The Knights went on a 15-4 run to end the quarter up seven, 43-36. Phillips hit for seven points in the frame, and Roberts added three, as did Steven Ross – who had a huge block on a breakaway lay-up by the visitors. Ross also hit the boards well, ending his night with seven rebounds in limited playing time against the much bigger Roane team.
Up seven going down the stretch, the Silver Knights put together a good fourth quarter and outscored the visitors, 17-12, to grab the win. Coach Leach used all his players in the fourth and used a good rotation of nine throughout the game.
Roberts, the Knights senior point guard, ended the regular season with some big plays against some tall company, as he challenged the visitors’ big men with nifty moves to the basket and was sent to the free throw line 11 times. He finished the night as the game’s top scorer with 21 points, including a three and 7-11 from the line. He also ended with four steals, three assists and three rebounds.
Phillips finished with 14 points, six steals and five rebounds, while West got nine points and 10 rebounds. Mark Rucker hit a basket for two points and played a good floor game with five steals, two assists and seven rebounds, plus a blocked shot.
“We executed well tonight, and I think we are where we wanted to be at this point in time. Everyone contributed something tonight; we took some bumps, but we got up and played hard-nosed basketball and came away with a huge win,” said Leach.
“I am proud of how we have come together as a team. We made it a full court game, which wore down their big man, and we held their leading scorer to 10 points below his average. Defensively, we continue to improve and make teams work for shots. We don’t have a lot of height, but we play big. Roberts put on a good display tonight,” said Coach Rick Leach.