ROBINSON, Ill. — E Smith picked up a struggling Lincoln offense in the first half, and Ethan Bushey took on the task in the second, as the juniors each finished with 18 points to help the Alices hold off Robinson, 55-50, in boys basketball Wednesday.
Torrence Gillis was next with 10 points for Lincoln (9-9), which has won seven of its last nine games, and Bushey and Julius Hardiman each snagged nine rebounds. Smith’s scoring total was a new career-high. Robinson (8-16) was led by Brayden Childress with 18 points, and Kade Lassen 15.
The Alices led the entire fourth quarter, but the margin was never bigger than six. Lassen fouled out with just under five minutes to go, but Childress had a run of four straight points to tie it at 45 with about 2:30 to play. Bushey answered with a 3-pointer that put Lincoln ahead for good, and the Alices made 7-of-8 free throws the rest of the way to ensure the lead was never tighter than two. Lincoln finished 14-of-18 from the stripe.
“(Robinson has) played just about every game tough. They don't get blown out, because they're well-coached, and they do their stuff right,” Lincoln coach Jordan Myers said. “We knew it'd be a game like that, and we were fortunate enough to be on the right side of things.
“We're shooting better at the free-throw line, especially in crunch team. In the fourth quarter we did a better job of getting there, stepping up and hitting them when we needed them.”
Neither team found the net often in the first quarter, and it was 6-6 after one. With the game knotted, 8-8, Smith canned a 3-pointer to begin a personal 11-0 run and put Lincoln up, 19-10. The teams traded four-point runs, and the Alices led at half, 23-14.
Lincoln went over five minutes without scoring in the third quarter, allowing the Maroons to jump ahead, 25-23. Bushey finally halted the drought with a 3-pointer, Smith netted one, and Bushey made two more to give the Alices a 35-32 edge after three.
Smith had 13 in the first half, and Bushey 16 in the second half, including four 3s.
“Ethan was pretty good. He hit a few 3s, and he hasn't shot many this year. But he knocked some down, and that opened up their defense a little bit,” Myers said. “He was definitely a catalyst that got us over the hump. E is getting more comfortable with the offense and what he's doing. It seems like someone different is getting us over the top every game. Tonight it was E in the first half and Ethan in the second, and we needed every one of them.”
Lincoln's junior varsity rolled, 74-49. The JV Alices (4-14) had four in double figures as all eight scored. Zach Steffey had 20 points, Ty McNeece 17, and Coleton Pfoff and Kanden Vash 10.
The Alices host Boonville at 6:30 p.m. Friday.
LINCOLN 55, ROBINSON 50
E. Bushey (f) 5 4-4 18, Hardiman (f) 3 1-3 7, Curry (g) 0 0-0 0, Gillis (g) 3 4-6 10, Smith (g) 6 3-3 18, Corrona 0 0-0 0, N. Bushey 0 2-2 2, Pfoff 0 0-0 0, Howder 0 0-0 0. Totals: 17 14-18 55.
Childress (f) 7 4-8 18, Goble (f) 3 0-2 6, Lassen (g) 5 3-4 15, Jackson (g) 0 1-2 1, Shidler (g) 1 0-0 3, Hoalt 2 0-1 4, Weber 1 0-0 3, Roy 0 0-0 0. Totals: 19 8-17 50.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Lincoln |6-17-12-20 — 55
Robinson |6-8-18-18 — 50
3-pointers: Lincoln 7 (E. Bushey 4, Smith 3), Robinson 4 (Lassen 2, Weber, Shidler). Fouls: Lincoln 15, Robinson 22. Fouled out: Lassen, Hoalt. JV: Lincoln 74-49.