Leopards pull away from Hughes Springs in second half for big win

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Liberty-Eylau senior Javon Hunter (22) goes high to block a Hughes Springs shot Tuesday at the Rader Dome. The Leopards won, 66-39.

Liberty-Eylau’s depth was a positive factor Tuesday afternoon at the Rader Dome as the Leopards beat Hughes Springs, 66-39.

First-year head coach Dewaski Davis alternated fives to wear down the Mustangs in the second half. L-E outscored Hughes Springs 35-14 in the final two quarters.

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Former L-E football and basketball star Tra Carson was present Tuesday to see the Leopards beat Hughes Springs.

Seniors Kentraile Atkins and Javon Hunter started the game hot, helping L-E (11-7) build a 20-11 cushion at the first break. Atkins and Hunter finished the game with 10 points each. Beandre Wafer and Takylan Hampton led the Leopards with 12 points each.

“I’m still looking at who can play, and putting different combinations out there,” said Davis. “I know when it comes district I’ll know who can play a lot of minutes, and who can’t.

“We had a pretty good tournament at Idabel, and made some major strides. I think we’re headed in the right direction. Javon Hunter makes us go. He scores, rebounds, blocks, and stretches zones out.  We’ve got some good weapons to go with Javon. We’re going to put pressure on everybody we play, and be aggressive.”

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Leopards survive Hughes Springs rally

L-E went cold in the second quarter, resulting in short-termed rally by the Mustangs. Hughes Springs (3-8) got as close as four points, but still trailed 31-25 at intermission.

The Leopards put the game out of reach early in the second half with Wafer scoring eight points, while sophomore Chris Lewis and Hampton buried long 3-pointers. All of Hampton’s points came on treys.

Devin Flournoy kept the Mustangs in striking distance during the first half. He scored 14 of his game-high 16 points in the first two quarters. Flournoy had three 3-pointers, and Chase Brown added two treys.

Liberty-Eylau’s junior varsity beat the Mustangs, 44-13.

The Leopards will host New Boston Friday. Hughes Springs begins district play at home against Daingerfield.