Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

February 11, 2014

Lion Share: Boyd County gets 5 in double figures, beats Russell

Aaron Snyder
The Independent

RUSSELL — Boyd County coach Randy Anderson threw three guys out of the locker room not long ago.

Me, myself and I.

The unselfish Lions have shown no indication that they’ll return, either. Five players scored in double figures as Boyd County throttled Russell, 73-41, on Monday night at Marvin Meredith Gymnasium.

Tristan Burgess and Conner Gauze shared team-high honors in scoring, with 15 points apiece. Burgess attempted just seven shots, draining six — four were 3-pointers.

“On the top of our board in the locker room, it says ‘Family. Forget about me, I love you,’” Burgess said. “We try to emphasize that in our play, and play with that in mind.”

Boyd County has mastered the balancing act. Monday night marked the ninth time this season that the Lions have had at least four players reach 10 or more points in the same game.

“That’s something we’ve really worked on the last two weeks — getting me, myself and I out of the locker room completely,” Anderson said. “It’s gotta be a we, gotta be an us. We’ve got five quality seniors who understand that. They’ve done a good job of bringing them all together.”

Russell’s defensive game plan allowed Boyd County senior Jonah Black enough space to sink a few shots en route to a personal 10-point first quarter.

“Jonah kickstarted us on offense and on the defensive end,” Burgess said. “He’s always been our energy guy in the starting five.”

Said Russell coach Merle Kidwell: “If you watch them all year, he’s probably the guy you’d play off of, but he made shots. After that, we had to change all kinds of defenses. And we’re not very good in man defenses right now.”

Black and Burgess combined for four 3-pointers in the first quarter, which ended with the Lions ahead 25-12.

Clayton Meade and Kaleb Mullins were significant contributors off the bench. Meade supplied 10 points and four assists off the pine. Mullins tallied seven boards.

Senior starter Grayson Griffith added 11 points and nine rebounds for the Lions.

Boyd County (13-12) held Russell (5-19) to 11 total points in the second and third periods, combined, and forced 24 total turnovers in the contest.

Kidwell was left impressed after his team’s second lopsided loss to the Lions.

“I told coach Anderson they have a shot to get to Rupp if things fall right for them,” Kidwell said. “They shoot it well, pass it well ... (Bobby) Anderson is the consummate point guard — he doesn’t care if he scores or who scores ... Burgess hits (3-pointers) from NBA range ... Gauze is a load inside. I really like their team.”

Starting with a left-wing three-ball, Russell senior Caleb Martin netted 10 of his game-high 16 points in the fourth quarter. Senior center Johnny McGuire swatted five shots and grabbed six boards, but managed just one point.

Red Devils freshman Ethan Raby missed his second game after spraining his wrist at Greenup County. Kidwell expects his top 3-point shooter to return tonight against West Carter.

Boyd County travels to Lewis County tonight.

AARON SNYDER can be reached at asnyder@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2664.