Ruston fends off late surge from Airline in boys’ hoops

Photo Credit: Reggie McLeroy

By Kyle Roberts

Ruston High boys basketball team (2-0) took a 61-50 win over the Airline Vikings Thursday night in the second straight home game for the Bearcats.

Ruston dominated for nearly three-and-a-half quarters with a higher sense of intensity before Airline began to chip into the lead in the fourth quarter.

“Parts of our intensity were better tonight,” Ruston head coach Ryan Bond said. “That was something we talked about for the last couple of days. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing; you have to bring a level of intensity to play well. We have a lot of hard working players out here, and we have to work at it. We had a couple of good film sessions this week. It’s the level of consistency when you’re up twenty that you’re looking for. To hold a lead and not take bad shots.”

Ruston took an early 9-2 lead with 3:30 to go in the first quarter thanks to a high intensity defense that stymied Airline’s offensive efforts. Airline answered by outscoring Ruston 7-4 for the remainder of the quarter to cut Ruston’s lead to 13-9 after the first stanza.

The Bearcats exploded in the second quarter with 23 points total; however, Airline ended the quarter on an 8-0 run, and Ruston would go into the halftime locker room up 36-23.

Ruston kept the energy high in the third quarter and hit three 3-pointers to help out score Airline 18-10 and lead 54-33 heading into the fourth quarter.

Junior guard Lonnie Dimmer led Ruston with 19 total points on the night after scoring 12 in the second quarter alone. Sophomore Aidan Anding added 15 points, while junior Jay Lillard finished with 13 points .

Ruston will return to action today in the Saline Tournament against Lakeview High School.

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