Raiders fall to sixth-ranked John A. Logan

Raiders fall to sixth-ranked John A. Logan

After erasing a 12-point deficit midway through the second half, the Three Rivers men's basketball team never got over the hump Saturday night.

The Raiders went nearly 2 1/2 minutes without a field goal as sixth-ranked John A. Logan College regained control and won 76-66 at the Libla Family Sports Complex.

"We just couldn't sustain some runs," Raiders coach Brian Bess said. "I don't know if it was the energy to get back in it or if they were that good that they could turn it on and turn it off whenever they wanted."

Sean East and Tujautae Williams provided the power for the Volunteers as the pair combined for 42 points.

Keith Kiner's double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds to go with five blocks led the Raiders with Lamar Wilkerson and Kinyon Hodges each scoring 14 points.

Three Rivers, however, shot 35% from the field, attempted only seven free throws and finished minus-13 on rebounds.

Logan, which opened with an 80-65 win over fifth-ranked Mineral Area on Friday, will host Three Rivers on Nov. 20.

"That's the beauty of all of this is we get to play Logan again and hopefully we're better by then," Bess said. "That'sa test of being a good team."

The Raiders (1-1) get another test Monday when they travel to Motlow State (1-3) for a 7 p.m. tipoff in Tullahoma, Tennessee.

"Motlow is really good and we don't have much time to even get ready," Bess said.

After a season-opening 96-53 win over Link Year Prep on Friday in the First Midwest Bank Classic, the Raiders trailed 39-29 at halftime Saturday.

Three Rivers cut Logan's lead to 59-54 with 6 1/2 minutes remaining but East knocked down a 3-pointer to start a personal 7-2 run.

A 6-3 guard from Louisville, Kentucky, East transferred from Bradley where he averaged 9.0 points and 3.6 assists in 20 starts last season.

East and Williams, a 6-7 guard from Chicago who averaged 6.4 points and 3.9 rebounds at Tennessee Tech last season, were named to the all-tournament team.

"We didn't match up real good with them," Bess said. "They're really good.

"I think we did good on the rest of the team."

Cobie Barnes, a transfer from Indiana State, chipped in nine points and nine rebounds for Logan, which didn't have any other player score more than six points.

Kiner and Hodges were named to the all-tournament team along with a pair from Mineral Area (1-1).

The Raiders fell behind in the first half after Kiner's putback dunk cut Logan's lead to five. The Volunteers put together an 11-5 run to lead by 11 with just under 6 minutes left in the half.

Wilkerson sank a 3-pointer but East answered with one of his own while Williams later knocked down a 3 before the shot clock expired for a 37-23 lead.

Logan went the final 3 minutes without a field goal and Kiner scored twice late to get Three Rivers within 10 at the break.

The Raiders shot 30% from the field in the first half while Logan made 52% of its shots from the field, including 5 of 12 from 3-point range.

Many of the misses by Three Rivers were around the basket.

"I would say at least five or six layups we normally make, maybe more in the first half at least," Bess said.

The Raiders rallied with a 14-2 run that started with a three-point play by Kiner. Hodges later threw down a dunk off a fastbreak pass by Wilkerson, who capped the run with a game-tying 3-pointer at the 10:48 mark.

Three Rivers forced a turnover with a 10-second backcourt violation but missed a chance to break the 48-all tie and take the lead for the first time since 3-2 in the opening minutes.

East was fouled shooting a 3-pointer and made all three foul shots before the teams traded baskets over the next minute. East scored off his own miss and later sank both ends of a one-and-one for a 59-53 lead.

Logan finished 21 of 27 from the line.

Lamont Jackson got the Raiders within 59-55 but by the time they sank their next field goal Logan was up 10 with East and Williams scoring all the points.

"We can match up with those two guys, we just didn't and I don't know what we've got to do to be able to do it for 40 minutes," Bess said.


Brian Rosener - Daily American Republic