Quick start helps LHS boys cruise past Olathe Northwest for 65-45 win

Lawrence High's coaching staff greets Lawrence Zeke Mayo (2) as he runs off the court in the City Showdown at Lawrence High School, February 11, 2019.

Peyton Mallory could tell in warmups his shot was flowing, and the senior looked to be aggressive early and often Tuesday. That worked out well for Lawrence, as Mallory hit two shots from beyond the arc to spark a quick start against Olathe Northwest.

The Lions never looked back, as they never trailed on their way to a 65-45 home win Tuesday. Mallory led the way with 20 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting. He also knocked down all seven of his free throw attempts.

“I thought we came out great,” Mallory said. “We were coming off a loss so we were really motivated to come away with a win. My shot was flowing, I felt that before the game. I knew I should come out and shoot early on. My teammates were getting me open.”

Nobody reached double figures scoring for Olathe Northwest, and Zaid Dajani and Jon Lindsay led the way with 8 points apiece.

Mallory hit a pair of threes in the opening minutes and senior Mayson Quartlebaum added a third from beyond the arc to give the Lions (4-3, 2-1 Sunflower League) an early 9-2 lead.

Turnovers kept the Ravens (3-5) within striking distance, but the Lions used another 9-2 spurt capped off by a transition and-one by Valdez White to take an 18-9 lead. Lawrence used strong transition play to the tune of 64% shooting from the field in the 20-point win.

“We were able to get out and make some clean passes,” Lawrence coach Mike Lewis said. “That’s our game, to get out, run and share it. Our guys were finding good space and scoring the ball well.”

However, Lewis walked away from the home win impressed with his team’s defensive effort, as Lawrence held Olathe Northwest to 43% shooting from the field and forced 12 turnovers.

“I thought we made a nice step defensively with our point total,” Lewis said. “Giving up 45, we came off 71 a week ago and that was an emphasis that we needed to get better defensively, and I thought we played better.”

Bryce Johnson, who finished with 11 points, scored 6 points in the second quarter as Lawrence held a 28-18 halftime advantage. The Lions then used a 17-9 spurt to pull away for good in the third quarter, sparked by a four-point play by Mallory.

“It was really exciting,” Mallory said with a laugh. “It was a big energy boost.”

Still, the game wasn’t without negatives for the Lions, as three players exited with injuries. Quartlebaum re-aggravated an ankle injury suffered last week, while junior Zeke Mayo (ankle) and White (leg cramps) both left the game.

Still, the Lions have time to rest up and get healthy after taking a step in the right direction against the Ravens.

“It’s a little nerve-wracking,” Lewis said of the injuries. “We don’t play again until next Thursday, so we have time to rest and get healed up.”

Lawrence 65, Olathe Northwest 45

Lawrence 18 10 21 16 — 65

Olathe NW 9 9 16 11 — 45

Lawrence (65)

Zeke Mayo 2-7 0-0 4, Peyton Mallory 5-5 7-7 20, Willie Dotson 2-3 6, Valdez White 4-4 1-1 9, Ethan Bentzinger 0-2 0, Bryce Johnson 4-5 3-4 11, Mayson Quartlebaum 1-1 0-0- 3, Ruben Littlehead 2-3 0-0 5, Jacorey Thompson 3-4 0-1 6, Avion Nelson 0-0 1-2 1, Gannon Hill 0-2 0-0 0, Totals: 23-36 12-15 65.

Olathe NW (45)

Zaid Dajani 3-9 2-3 8, Dee Goree 3-4 0-0 7, Christian Carlstedt 2-5 1-2 6, Jon Lindsay 3-3 2-4 8, Jake Waters 2-6 1-2 6, Brady Robinson 1-3 2-2 4, Carter Brown 1-3 0-0 2, Ben Gutenkunst 0-5 0-0 0, TJ Kinkade 1-1 0-1 2, Kale Sher 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 17-40 8-14 45.

3-point goals: LHS 7-15 (Mayo 0-2, Mallory 3-3, Dotson 2-3, Bentzinger 0-2, Quartlebaum 1-1, Littlehead 1-2, Gannon 0-2); ONW 3-12 (Dajani 0-2, Goree 1-2, Carlstedt 1-2, Waters 1-2, Gutenkunst 0-4). Turnovers: LHS 14, ONW 12. Fouled out: None.

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