Landrum Rolls Chesnee
Region play continued Tuesday night at “The Cage” with the first rivalry matchup between the Landrum Cardinals and Chesnee Eagles. The Cards came into the game 14-3 overall and 1-0 in region 1-2A after a nice 77-50 road win over Liberty this past Friday night.
The Cardinals have been a scoring machine this season, averaging nearly 62 points per game prior to Tuesday night. They had scored over 1,000 points throughout their 16 non region games and their region opener at Liberty. They are led by the duo of Sophomore Guard Bennett Edwards and Junior Guard Franklin Davis. They combined for 514 points prior to tonight’s game.
Things have not been going as ideal as Chesnee would have hoped lately. The Eagles have been struggling ever since the Roundball Classic. They were on a 3 game losing skid, including a 70-59 loss to Blacksburg to open region play, dropping their overall record to 5-12. The Eagles have not been able to consistently score the basketball and avoid turning the ball over. Free throw shooting has also been a plague for them of late. Despite all of that, Chesnee has shown flashes all season long of just how good a team they can be if they can just find a way to clean up the small things and find some consistency.
With the Eagles in an ill-timed slump, one thing was going to be crucial for them going up against a strong offensive team like Landrum – especially with it coming at a hostile environment like The Cage. Chesnee was going to have to get off to a fast start and keep pace with Landrum or have several things go their way. Not unlike the situation TCU found themselves in against Georgia in Monday Night’s College Football Playoff National Championship.
Unfortunately for the Eagles, that is not where that comparison ends.
None of the keys for a Chesnee victory came to fruition, and because of that, things got out of hand quickly. Landrum opened the game on a 13-0 run behind a pair of 3 pointers from Franklin Davis, a deep ball from Mario Gonzalez, and layups from Marc Baker and Bennett Edwards. That run alone would be all they needed to salt the game away.
After a Chesnee timeout, the Cards extended the run to 18-0. It took until 3:25 to play in the 1st quarter for the Eagles to get onto the scoreboard courtesy of a layup from Daniel Wease, who would go on to lead all Chesnee scorers with 18 points. At the end of the 1st quarter, Landrum led 26-8, and they outscored the Eagles 55-36 over the final 3 quarters en route to the 81-44 win to up their overall record to 15-3 and 2-0 in region, keeping the Cards in a tie with Greer Middle College for 1st place.
Landrum was led by Franklin Davis with 18 points. Bennett Edwards tallied 13, while Noah Hamlin scored 9. Marc Baker added 5 points, and Marco Gonzalez had 5.
Aside from Daniel Wease, the Eagles’ only other big performance was from Freshman Guard Braylon Blanton, who scored 8 points.
Chesnee, now 5-13 (0-2 region), will return home Friday night, where they host Greer Middle College. Landrum wraps up the week with a tough matchup at home against Blacksburg. Both games are slated for a 7:30 tipoff.