Panthers close out 2022, open 2023 with wins

Pictured is Lincoln Prep boys basketball coach Antonio Hudson directing his Panthers on the court. (Photo by T. Scott Boatright)

By T. Scott Boatright

Lincoln Preparatory School boys basketball coach Antonio Hudson believes if an opponent can’t score on you, they can’t beat you.

That focus on the defensive side of the court Hudson preaches to his Panthers in fine form to start the new year Tuesday night as Lincoln Prep shut down D’Arbonne Woods 54-23 at the Ruston Sports Complex.

“I always talk to this team about the need for good defense and that playing well on the end of the court will lead to good things on the other end and on the scoreboard,” Hudson said. “It’s a good start to a new year, but we have to keep pushing forward and working to get better game-by-game, one day at a time.”

Lincoln Prep stormed out to a 24-7 lead by the end of the first quarter and maintained that pace in the second stanza, building its advantage to 45-13 by intermission.

The Panthers went to slow ball in the second half, maintaining their defensive intensity while focusing on ball movement on offense.

D’Arbonne Woods outscored the Panthers 8-7 in the third quarter while both teams scored only two points in the final stanza.

“It’s hard to get the players to realize they’ve got to keep up that intensity the whole game, even when they have a big lead,” Hudson said. “It’s something we’ll learn and get better from.”

Braylyn Mayfield double-doubled for the Panthers, finishing with 14 points, 10 rebounds, two assists and two steals while Kobe Mack added 10 points along with three boards, an assist and a steal.

Amarjae Young totaled seven points, three steals, two rebounds and an assist for Lincoln Prep, which also received six points each from Trey Spann and Brandon Heard, with Spann adding three assists and a pair of steals while Heard made three steals and a pair of dishes

Stephen Burks III capped off scoring for the Panthers with five points while adding three steals and two assists.

Next up for the Panthers (10-3) is a Saturday game at Gibsland-Coleman.


Lincoln Prep 59, Jonesboro-Hodge 52 (BOYS) 

JONESBORO — Lincoln Preparatory School survived an ice-cold start and saved its best for last Thursday as the Panthers roared on the road at Jonesboro-Hodge.

The Tigers outscored the Panthers 14-4 in the opening stanza, but Lincoln Prep rebounded in the second quarter, outscoring Jonesboro-Hodge 20-17 to cut their halftime deficit to seven points at 31-24.

Lincoln Prep then looked to its defense to help pull off the win as the Panthers held the Tigers to 21 points after intermission while scoring 35 themselves.

Bralyn Mayfield double-doubled for the Panthers and was one of four Lincoln Prep players scoring in double digits, hitting for 15 points while adding 14 rebounds.

Brandon Heard led the Panthers with 14 points in scoring  while three rebounds, four assists and two steals for Lincoln Prep, which also received a double-double from Kobe Mack, who powered for 11 points while pulling down 17 boards.

Stephen Burks III also totaled 14 points for the Panthers while adding three rebounds and a pair of steals.