Lincoln (8-1) gave the Rams the first field goal of the game and
then went on a 10-0 run, keyed by the outside shooting of sophomore
Jordan Nelson. Nelson tied his career high with 22 points, hitting
on nine of 18 shots, including four 3-pointers. Two of those 3s came in
that early charge, and it appeared the Railers were off on another
big run, putting away the Rams early.
Unfortunately for Lincoln, no
one let Riverview Gardens know they were supposed to let the Railers
run away with the afternoon contest. The Rams (4-5) answered with
their own 8-0 run to knot the game at 10. Too many early turnovers
and quick shots allowed Riverview to take a 16-15 lead at the end of
the first quarter.
The trademark Lincoln defense reappeared in the second quarter. The
Rams were held to only nine points in the second eight minutes. Lincoln ran
off another 10 points in a row to take a 25-16 lead midway through
the second quarter. Both teams traded baskets until the Railers ran
off six in a row before Riverview scored the last basket of the half
to go into intermission with Lincoln up 34-25.
Senior Kyle Young
scored 11 of his 18 points in the first half, hitting all five of
his first-half free throws.
In the third quarter, Lincoln's defense had no answer for the
outside shooting of Riverview. The Rams hit five 3-pointers,
including three from Kelton Ramsey. Ramsey, scoreless at halftime,
showed up with 11 points in the third quarter, drawing Riverview as close as
48-43 late in the period. However, Ramsey's accuracy was matched by
10 from Nelson.
The final period was close throughout, and after a Young basket gave
Lincoln a 52-44 lead, Riverview ran off seven in a row to close to
52-51. The teams traded baskets and free throws for the next few
scoring possessions, bringing the score to 56-55. Lincoln's defense
finally clamped down enough to survive and pull out the victory,
scoring six in a row. After allowing a four-point stretch, the
Railers scored another six in a row for the final margin.
Ironically, sophomore Nathaniel Smith, who played his last game as a
15-year-old, made his most significant contributions from 15 feet,
hitting all eight of his free throws to finish with a career-high 11
This game was won at the charity stripe, especially in the
fourth quarter. For the game, Lincoln hit on 23 of 27 tosses, which
includes 12-of-13 in the final period. Riverview Gardens finished
only 12-of-15 from the line.
Ben Brackney finished with nine points, including a critical 4-of-5
from the line in the fourth quarter. The junior, who had been
battling illness, played 20 minutes and seemed to be on his way to
getting back to his normal playing ways. Louis (or, as he was
introduced by the PA announcer, "Lenny") Schonauer finished with
points and five rebounds (team-high), while Kyle Frick added three and
continued to play superior defense. Wes Neece and Alex Anderson
played but did not score. However, Neece contributed four rebounds as
One of the troublesome numbers from the contest showed the Railers
turning the ball over 16 times, while forcing only 18 turnovers from
[to top of second column]
Lincoln will be back in action Monday on the second day of the
Schnucks Holiday Classic in Collinsville. The Railers will be
matched up against former Big 12 Conference foe Decatur
Eisenhower. Eisenhower defeated Belleville East 67-61 in the
opening round. The Railers' contest will start at 2:30 on Monday
afternoon. As always, you can catch the game on WLCN-FM 96.3 and
LINCOLN (68) --
Nelson 9 0-0 22, Young 5 8-9 18, Smith 1 8-8 11, Brackney 2 4-5
9, Schonauer 1 2-2 5, Frick 1 1-3 3, Anderson 0 0-0 0, Neece 0
0-0 0. Team 19 23-27 68.
3-Point FG: Team 7 (Nelson 4, Schonauer,
Riverview Gardens (59) --
Ramsey 18, T. Williams 12, Anthony 12, Thomas 8, Roberson 6,
End of first quarter -- Riverview Gardens 16, LCHS 15
Halftime -- LCHS 34, Riverview Gardens 25
End of third quarter -- LCHS 50, Riverview Gardens 43
Other Railer notes:
Lincoln shot 49 percent (19
of 39) for the game, while the Rams
finished at 39 percent.
Lincoln scored 24 points off the Rams' turnovers.
In the first
nine games, the Railers have allowed only 73 points
in the second quarter.
Referring back to the 15 for Nathaniel Smith, the sophomore is
15-for-15 from the line in his varsity career. "Happy Birthday" to Smitty on Monday!
Smith is the fifth player to top double figures on the season.
In the last
four games, the top two leading scorers in each game
have been a combination of Jordan Nelson and Kyle Young.
Young has made eight fewer free throws on the season (49) than
Lincoln's opponents have made (57).
[Special report filed by JEFF BENJAMIN]