Basketball: CAC rolls past LISA Academy

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Central Arkansas Christian’s teams rolled over LISA Academy on Tuesday by a combined 139-16.

Steve Quattlebaum’s Lady Mustangs won, 66-4. Matt Hall’s Mustangs prevailed, 73-12.

Despite the margin, Quattlebaum found some positives.

“It’s a good opportunity for a lot of the kids that don’t get to play a lot,” he said. “We had some kids step up and play pretty well. They don’t get in at all in a lot of the close games, and with our limited schedule, they just haven’t had much playing time. They’ve been working hard in practice and deserve a chance to get out there and play.

“And our kids that usually play a lot are learning how to sit on the bench and cheer their teammates on. That’s not a bad thing.

“You can make positives out of it.”

The Lady Mustangs led after one quarter, 29-0; at halftime, 39-0; and after three quarters, 54-1. LISA didn’t make a two-point field goal.

The Mustangs built a 44-0 lead after one quarter and led at halftime, 57-6. They padded that to 69-9 after three.

In the girls game, Ava Knoedl led all scorers with 20 points and had four steals in about a quarter. Sophomore Carly Morrow added 11 points off the bench.

In the boys game, Jackson Richmond recorded 16 points and three steals in 10 minutes. Karsen Richard added 14 points; Andrew Haughaboo delivered 13 points, three assists and four steals.

The Lady Mustangs are 12-0 overall and atop the 3A-6 conference standings at 9-0 heading into Friday’s game at Jacksonville Lighthouse (4-8, 2-6).

The Mustangs are 8-5 and 6-2. Jacksonville Lighthouse is 12-6 and 6-3 after a win over league-leading Helena-West Helena Central on Tuesday. Friday’s matchup will be for runner-up in the conference standings.

Last week, CAC split contests with Episcopal Collegiate, with the girls winning, 48-39; and the boys falling, 40-33.

The Lady Mustangs led after one quarter, 17-12; and at halftime, 28-23. Episcopal pulled within 33-31 after three but outscored the Wildcats in the final period, 15-8.

Bethany Dillard, returning from Covid quarantine, led CAC with 18 points and five steals. Knoedl added 13 points; Riley Bryant recorded 10 points and 10 rebounds.

CAC all but assured a conference title with its second win over Episcopal, which stands second in

the league race at 14-5 and 7-2. Helena-West Helena is third at 9-3 and 6-2; DeWitt is fourth at 12-4 and 5-2.

“That was a huge win, a huge win,” Quattlebaum said. “Dillard hadn’t practiced in two weeks. I wouldn’t normally play a player who hasn’t practiced in two weeks, but these are different times. She’s our only senior, and it’s been a tough Covid season. I didn’t see any reason not to let her play. And she played well. She had to play with the mask. She was tired. She lost a little game shape. I had to take more timeouts than I usually take, but the kids played well, hit some big baskets and did a good job defensively on their best player. I was really proud of them.”

Quattlebaum and his assistant, Jason Gates, as well as several Lady Mustangs and their families, will be in Fayetteville on game day to watch CAC alum Christyn Williams and her UConn Huskies visit the Arkansas Razorbacks.

CAC will then play host to DeWitt on Saturday at 2 p.m. and Helena on Tuesday.

Against Episcopal, the CAC boys saw a 7-7 tie after one quarter fade into an 18-12 halftime deficit. After three quarters, Episcopal led, 28-24, and the Wildcats added three points to their margin over the final period.

Richmond, Tyler Williams and Steven Massey led CAC offensively with seven points each. Richmond added 8 rebounds.

The Mustangs will play DeWitt (4-8, 2-5) at 4:30 p.m. Saturday and take on league-leading Helena-West Helena (8-4, 7-1) on Tuesday.