John Tyler closed with a flurry, and eliminated any worries of another late meltdown after scoring the final 15 points.
The Lions attacked the rack non-stop and jumped back on track with a 71-47 win over Lindale in a District 16-4A basketball game at the Lions Den.
The Lions visited the free throw line 28 times, shooting 71 percent from the stripe. The Lions never trailed, and outscored the Eagles 36-20 on points inside the paint and doubled up the guests on rebounds (40-20).
The Lions end the first half of district play in a three-way tie with Corsicana and Whitehouse at 3-2 in district play. No. 12 Jacksonville, which outlasted Whitehouse for a 62-56 overtime win on Friday, leads the district with a 5-0 mark.
Lindale dropped to 0-5 in district at the midway point.
The two-time defending district champion Lions lost a 13-point lead in the second half in a one-point loss to Jacksonville on Tuesday. JT avoided the same mistake, doing all the scoring over the final 4:48.
“The strong finish, that was the most significant part seeing how the (Jacksonville) game we didn’t close well,” said JT coach Cedeno Clark, whose team outscored Lindale 24-12 in the fourth period. “I really stressed us starting strong and carrying it over throughout the game.”
Tyus Bowser fueled the Lions with 17 points, 10 rebounds and five steals. The 6-3 senior forward, who pledged his services to the Oklahoma State football team on Thursday, stepped outside to hit a 3-pointer, and also showed his versatility leading the break, where the Lions recorded 12 points in transition.
Isaac Warren contributed 14 points, six rebounds, four steals and three assists for the Lions. Darion Flowers and Keaunte Humber finished with 10 points each for the Lions, who played minus starting wing Fred Ross, away on a football recruiting visit.
The Lions opened the game strong, taking a 12-2 lead after a putback inside by Bowser. Warren drained back-to-back 3-pointers for a 20-point lead (30-10) as the Lions put away an 0-for-27 stretch from long distance the previous two games.
Lindale stayed on the prowl, thanks to the shooting touch of Mason Terrey, who led all scorers with 27 points. Lindale cut JT’s once 21-point lead to single digits after Terry tallied all THE points during a 9-0 run, going 6-for-6 at the free throw line and sinking a trey to make it 52-44 with 5:38 left.
Terry drilled another triple to slice JT’s lead to 56-47 before the Lions ended with a knockout punch.
Bowser sparked the start of the run, finding Jordan Caldwell (eight points) cutting inside. Flowers knocked down a short jumper, Caldwell scored in transition, and Bowser stole a pass leading to a layup before exiting the game with JT ahead 64-47.
The Lions play three of their final five district games at home, including a season-ending rematch with Jacksonville.
“We needed that to get back on the winning track,” Clark said. “We’re going to continue to take the same approach, one game at a time.”
John Tyler 71, Lindale 47
Lindale 8 15 12 12—47
John Tyler 18 20 9 24—71
LINDALE — Mason Terry, 27; Dakota Heinaman, 2; Kolton Pierce, 1; Connor Lind, 5; Court Brown, 2; Brian Boaz, 4; Jacob Capo, 6. FG 15-35 FT 14-21.
JOHN TYLER — Darion Flowers, 10; Greg Ward, 3; Jordan Caldwell, 8; Isaac Warren, 14; Rodney Bendy, 2; Elliott Hart, 1; Keaunte Humber, 10; Javonte Tramble, 2; William Vaughn, 4; Tyus Bowser, 17. FG 24-54 FT 20-28.
Three-Point Goals — Lindale 3-14 (Terry 3), John Tyler 3-15 (Warren 2, Bowser). Rebounds — Lindale 20 (Lind 6), John Tyler 40 (Bowser 6). Assists — Lindale 9 (Pierce 4), John Tyler 10 (Warren 3).
RECORDS — Lindale 9-15 (0-5); John Tyler 9-14 (3-2).
NEXT UP — Jacksonville at Lindale, Tuesday; Nacogdoches at John Tyler, Tuesday.