Lincoln rocks Bear River 51-44 in league opener
With anticipation as to whether the Lincoln boys basketball team could keep its winning streak going in Pioneer Valley League play, the Fighting Zebras shocked the 13-3 Bear River Bruins 51-44 last week.
Improving to 14-4 with 11-straight wins, Lincoln seemed to spar with Bear River in the first quarter falling behind 18-15. However, Marcus Salgado got things going in the second period with two-treys and the striped stallions were off on a 15-6 run.
Although shooting just 35 percent from the field, the Zebras defense virtually shut down the Bruins leading scorer Justin Beskeen. The 6-foot-6 forward had been averaging nearly 22 points a game but could only put up 10 against Lincoln.
Zebras head coach Robert Ash decided the best way to slow Beskeen was to have a faster player guard him and Jackson Sterling drew that straw.
“Jackson is a hard-nosed kid and we knew he was going to be giving up – what – 7 inches,” Zebras head coach Robert Ash said of his strategy. “But the plan was, work your tail off and make his catches impossible. And if he catches a pass in the post we were ready to double on that.”
That kept Lincoln center Logan Stayner out of foul trouble and the junior responded with 16 points and nine rebounds.
It also opened the paint for forward Alexis Gonzalez who also made the Bruins pay under the basket. Adam Felt was held slightly below his season average but his work in the backcourt helped Lincoln overcome a Bear River rally in the closing minutes.
“We’re getting confident,” Felt said following the win. “Being able to come away with a ‘W’ without playing our best game was good.”
Trailing 45-30 going into the final eight minutes, the Bruins put on a strong press and went on 14-6 run. However, Lincoln didn’t panic and eventually found the combination needed to get the ball up court and hold on for the victory.
The Zebras beat Center 38-35 Tuesday. They will play at Foothill Thursday.
LINCOLN 51, BEAR RIVER 44
Bruins 18 6 6 14 – 44
Zebras 15 13 17 6 – 51
Bear River – 21-50, 2-6, 44, 3Pt 0-6. Lincoln – 19-51, 9-13, 51, 3Pt 4-17.
Turnovers – BR 14, L 13.
Lincoln – Stayner 6-10, 6-6, 16, Salgado 4-12, 1-2, 12, 3Pt 3-6, Gonzalez 4-8, 0-1, 8, 3Pt 0-1, Felt 3-6, 1-2, 8 3Pt 1-3.
Rebounds – Stayner 9, Gonzalez 5, Salgado 4. Team – 26.
NEXT HOME GAMES
Jan. 23 – Placer
Jan. 25 – Colfax