|Lonoke's Tyler Spencer goes up for a layup in the first quarter while being guarded by CAC's Hunter Corbell. (Photo by Mark Buffalo)|
By Mark Buffalo
LONOKE — It was a homecoming of sorts Friday night when the Lonoke Jackrabbits hosted the Central Arkansas Christian Mustangs at the Gina Cox Center.
CAC is coached by Bradley Spencer, who is a 2008 graduate of LHS. He was the most valuable player of the 2008 Class 4A state tournament when the Jackrabbits beat Hughes to win the school’s fifth state championship.
No championship was on the line Friday but Spencer’s Mustangs beat his alma mater 52-47.
On the other side of the court from Coach Spencer was his first cousin Tyler Spencer, who is a senior guard for the Jackrabbits.
Tyler Spencer gave the Jackrabbits a 2-0 lead early in the first quarter. From there, CAC outscored the Jackrabbits 21-3 the remainder of the first quarter to lead 21-5.
Lonoke started playing catchup in the second quarter and outscored the Mustangs 20-10 to trail 31-25 at halftime.
CAC pushed its lead to 42-30 following a basket by Kam Vick with 4:13 left in the third quarter.
Lonoke then went on an 11-0 run to pull to within three at 42-41 with 6:03 left. The last basket in the run was a steal and layup by Tyriqe Jackson.
Vick scored on a drive to the basket to put the Mustangs up 44-41 with 4:59 left. Lonoke’s Isaac Toney was then fouled shooting a three-pointer with 4:43 left. He sank all three free throws to tie the game at 44-44.
Lonoke took it’s first lead since 2-0 on a drive to the basket by Braidon Bryant with 2:25 left. CAC’s Grant Wood tied the game at 46-46 with 2:07 left.
Lonoke reclaimed the lead at 47-46 when Toney hit 1 of 2 free throws with 1:50 left. That would be Lonoke’s last points of the game.
CAC reclaimed the lead at 48-47 with 1:25 left on a putback by Tanner Webster.
Lonoke had a chance to reclaim the lead but it missed a jump shot.
CAC then missed the front end of the one-and-one but Lonoke turned the ball over on a traveling call. Vick then hit two free throws with 29 seconds left to make the score 50-47.
Lonoke had a chance to tie but missed a three-pointer with 10 seconds left. After a Lonoke foul, CAC hit two free throws to ice the game with 7.5 seconds left.
Jackson led Lonoke with 11 points. Bryant and Haven Hunter had seven points each. Kylan Branscomb and Tyler Spencer had six points each. Scoring five each were TaMarrea Moore and Toney.
Vick led CAC with 16 points. Wood added 10.