Stilwell After edging Topeka High in a low-scoring affair in its season opener, the Lawrence High boys basketball torched the nets in its 88-76 win over Wyandotte on Tuesday in the first round of the Blue Valley Shootout.
The Lions (2-0, ranked No. 3 in Class 6A) grabbed a commanding 50-30 halftime lead, as they scored more points in the first 16 minutes than they did in their 44-39 victory over the Trojans on Friday. Lawrence had four players reach double figures in senior Anthony Selden (29 points) and juniors Trey Quartlebaum (20), Savonni Shazor (12) and Brett Chapple (11).
While LHS coach Mike Lewis was pleased with the intensity the Lions played with in the first half after a sluggish start on Friday, he was disgruntled with his team’s effort after the break. Wyandotte sophomore Walzel Evans exploded for 17 of Wyandotte’s 32 points in the third quarter to cut the 20-point halftime deficit for the Bulldogs down to seven.
As the Lions gear up for the Blue Valley Shootout semifinals against Grandview — which beat Highland Park, 59-48, on Tuesday — Lewis would like to see more consistency through all four quarters from his squad.
“Just putting together a full game and limiting the goofy plays, the immature plays and just being solid on defense and getting better with our team defense and our individual challenges defensively. And that’s the beauty of film,” Lewis said. “You buy into film and you take a look at those things and you go, ‘You know what? Man, I was really bad’ or ‘You know what? That was pretty good.’ It’s that time of year. You just try to get better each game.”
Some of the good that Lewis and the Lions will see on film was their ability to attack the basket to get high-percentage shots. Whether it was finishing off alley-oops or driving down the lane for one-handed slams, Selden put on his own dunk contest to help him shoot an efficient 13 of 17 from the field.
“I’m feeling more comfortable than I was last week. Last week I felt really uncomfortable,” Selden said. “I didn’t know what my role was on the team, and now I figured out what it was. I need to drive to the basket. Anything the team needs me to do, I can do it.”
But even in the good, there were some teaching points for the Lions. Lawrence was in cruise control when Jake Rajewski hit Selden for an alley-oop midway through the second quarter, but the 6-foot-4 forward picked up a technical foul for hanging on to the rim.
“You get out on a team and you start to roll a little bit and you have the opportunity to make a play like that, you dunk the ball and you turn and sprint back on defense,” Lewis said. “That’s with kids and immaturity on occasion that you’re going to have stuff like that. It wasn’t a crazy unsportsmanlike play by any means. I’ve seen a lot worse, but it’s definitely what the rule is. And he knows better.”
The other alley-oop of which Selden was on the receiving end came on a dime from Chapple on the Lions’ first offensive possession. Chapple filled the stat sheet with 11 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and three steals.
“It’s good because you’re not, like, excellent at one thing,” the humble 6-foot-4 forward said. “It’s just good being average at everything else and helping the team out however you can.”
Chapple gave the Lions a boost in the early fourth quarter with a layup, two free throws and an assist to Shazor that set up a traditional 3-point play. Lawrence was able to build its lead back to 17 in the fourth.
The Lions were also able to breath a sigh of relief when Evans fouled out. The Wyandotte sophomore led all scorers with 36 points, and had a personal 9-0 run during his hot-shooting third quarter. Selden said that Evans’ 36 points felt more like 50, and he already has some ideas of what the Lions need to improve on defensively.
“We should talk more — talk on switches, talk out screens and step over and take charges when we know people have four or three fouls to get them out of the game,” Selden said. “We had multiple opportunities where we could’ve stepped to the side to take a charge.”
Lawrence will take on Grandview at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Anthony Selden 13-17 2-4 29, Zeke Mayo 2-2 3-3 8, Brett Chapple 4-5 3-4 11, Bryce Johnson 0-0 0-0 0, Trey Quartlebaum 6-8 5-6 20, Jake Rajewski 0-3 1-4 1, Bryant Graham 0-0 0-0 0, Savonni Shazor 5-7 0-0 12, Willie Dotson 0-0 0-0 0, Garrett Hart 0-0 0-0 0, Steven Strickland 3-4 3-4 7. Totals 33-46 17-25 88.
Dontae Wilson 3-8 0-0 7, Diamond Hines 7-15 5-5 23, Torry Moore 0-1 0-0 0, Walzel Evans 10-22 12-14 36, Angelo Hill 2-6 2-5 7, Brendon Davis 1-1 0-0 2, Bobbie Keys 0-1 1-2 1. Totals 23-54 20-26 76.
Lawrence 25 25 19 19 — 88
Wyandotte 12 18 32 14 — 76
3-point goals: Lawrence 7-11 (Quartlebaum 3, Shazor 2, Selden, Mayo); Wyandotte 8-20 (Evans 4, Hines 2, Hill, Wilson). Fouled out: Shazor, Lawrence; Evans, Wyandotte. Turnovers: Lawrence 13, Wyandotte 8.