By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Lions' defense gets job done in region win
Lakeview has 19 steals in win against Towns County
Towns County’s Lindsay Patton attempts to block a shot by Lakeview Academy’s Megan Rochester during a game at Lakeview Friday. - photo by SARA GUEVARA
For proof that defense does in fact lead to offense in the game of basketball, no one need look any further than the Lakeview boys’ performance Friday night.

The Lions (6-7, 5-1 Region 8-A) amassed 19 steals and caused seven turnovers with a stifling zone full-court press en route to an 88-54 win against region rival Towns County at Lakeview Academy.

“We go all out all the time,” Lakeview coach Seth Vining said. “We foul a lot but it’s because we play hard.
“Our guys always play so hard.”

It didn’t hurt that while the defense was clicking, shooters Daniel Olvera and Austin Pearson were converting on the other end.
Olvera alone had 25 points, eight steals, two blocks and two rebounds while the sophomore Pearson had 20 points and three steals.

“We had people shoot the ball well and they’re supposed to be our shooters,” Vining said. “Daniel shot the ball the best he has all year and that’s good, because that’s his role on this team.”

The Lions ran out to a 14-3 lead in the first quarter sparked by Olvera’s four straight points to start the game and seven team steals over the course of the first six minutes.

The start of the second was Pearson’s time to shine, as he single-handedly put Lakeview up by 10 with eight straight points, converting on two 3-pointers and a layup.

Lions’ center Jackson Wells got in on the action too, pushing his team’s lead to 13 by the half with four straight from the paint.
Wells finished with 17 points on the night.

“We did a good job of going inside tonight and I was really pleased with that,” Vining said.

For as good as Lakeview was in the first half — Olvera had 14 points and six steals, Pearson had eight points and two steals, Ross Biegler had five assists and Wells had eight points — its second-half effort went above and beyond.

The Lions started on an 8-3 run thanks to back-to-back 3-pointers by Olvera and Matt Askounis, who finished with nine points and six assists, en route to outscoring the Indians 29-18 in the quarter and 47-26 for the half.

The highlight came with four and a half minutes left in the third when Olvera, in the course of a 4-0 run, had a block, an assist, a steal and a layup. His assist was to Jordan Chastain who finished the night with four points, five rebounds and three assists.

That was the highlight, that is, until junior varsity regulars Derek Fadool and Kyle Lewis saw their first varsity action and made the most of it, scoring three and two points respectively.

“(Lewis) played well in tonight’s JV game and so he got to dress in the varsity game,” Vining said. “So him getting in on the scoring and getting that feeling was cool.

“And Fadool is our shooter on the junior varsity and played really well at point guard for us tonight.”

Lakeview returns to action at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Athens Academy.

Towns County (3-5, 2-3) was led by Rylan Albach with 11 points and Bradley Swanson with seven points and seven rebounds. D.J. Rogers and Brandon Henderson each added eight points for the Indians who next play at 7 p.m. Jan. 16 at Social Circle.

TOWNS COUNTY GIRLS 57, LAKEVIEW 37: With Lakeview down only seven points at the half, Towns County came out firing in the second half, outscoring the Lady Lions 32-19 en route to a win Friday night at Lakeview Academy.

Lakeview started strong after the Lady Indians jumped out to a 4-0 lead, answering with an 8-2 run of their own capped by four straight points by senior point guard Louisa Jacobs to take their first and only lead of the game at 8-6.

The Lady Lions defense held strong in the latter part of the first half, keeping the Towns County lead to just five points for the better part of four minutes before the Lady Lions pushed it to seven at the half buzzer on a layup by Lindsay Patton.

Towns County took its first double-digit lead with a 9-4 run to end the third quarter capped by a Brittany Walls pass to Jordan Moss for a layup and rolled from there.

Rebounding was the catalyst as the Lady Indians outrebounded the outsized Lady Lions 36-24 in the game.

Towns County was led by Melissa Conrad with 18 points and seven rebounds, Patton with 11 points and five rebounds and Moss with 10 points.

Maddie Haymore led the way for Lakeview with 13 points while Jamie Nixon added nine and Jacobs eight.

The Lady Lions return to action at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Athens Academy.
Friends to Follow social media