Basketball reports from last week's basketball action are below.
Legacy Powers Through Regional Tournament
Senior Boys and Girls Advance to State Tournament
HOT SPRINGS, ARK—Legacy Academy’s varsity basketball teams spent a lot of time in Hot Springs this past week in the HCAA (Heartland Christian Athletic Association) Regional Varsity Basketball Tournament. Games began on Tuesday night when the Lady Warriors faced Christian Ministries Academy (CMA) of Hot Springs and the Warriors faced Valley Christian of Russellville. Legacy’s girls took a commanding lead and defeated the Hot Springs team 56-29 with Oaklee Lofton giving her team 36 points, 12 rebounds, and 12 steals for a triple-double-double. She also added 6 deflections to her stats. Libbie Bartek gave 9 points and 6 rebounds, while Maddie Lowrey secured 7 boards for the girls’ team. This secured the girls a guaranteed ticket to advance to this week’s HCAA state tournament and allowed them to advance in regional play.
That same night the boys, down to six players after injuries, battled a strong and big team from Valley Christian. Their 6’6 big guy made it a tough night. The Warriors lost 87-70, unable to hold the more experienced team. Valley's respectable team is expected to go far in the HCAA 1A tournament. Manolo Vazquez gave the Warriors 26 points, followed by 17 from Jude Gallagher, and 15 from Silas Lofton. Gallagher also had 7 boards and 7 assists, while Wyatt Roden contributed 8 points and 11 boards. Losing this game forced the Warriors to the loser’s bracket to battle for the single ticket it provides out of regionals.
The Warriors next faced Mountain Home Christian School’s Patriots where they won their most decisive game of the season with a 91-27 victory. The Warriors led throughout the game. Manolo Vazquez had a double-double with 31 points and 18 rebounds, as did Jude Gallagher with 15 points and 13 rebounds. The most impressive player of the night was 8th grader, Silas Lofton, forced to play up off the bench after Legacy’s bench took a hit from injuries. Lofton nailed 7 three-pointers to give the Lockesburg squad 29 points. James Bartek added 12 points to the scoreboard for the Warriors, while Wyatt Roden had 10 rebounds.
Saturday both of Legacy’s teams returned to Hot Springs. The Lady Warriors faced Garrett Memorial’s Lady Saints from Hope, while the boys faced Stephens Christian’s Roadrunners. In Senior Boys’ play, the Warriors felt Toledano’s absence from injury and battled a close game all night. After exchanging the lead throughout the game, the Roadrunners grabbed and held the lead most of the 4th quarter, even by 10 points with four minutes left in the game. The Warriors battled back finally taking the lead with less than 1 minute left in the game. After a successful stop, the Warriors took possession of the ball with 33 seconds on the clock. A Warrior turnover allowed the Roadrunners to run the court, score, and secure a 1-point lead with 7 seconds left in the game. Manolo Vazquez rushed the ball straight back down the court into the paint and shot a floater that gave the Warriors a 85-84 victory at the buzzer. This win secured the underdog team the last slot into the state tournament. They’ll play Fayetteville Christian in Fort Smith on Tuesday. Vazquez gave the Warriors an astounding 42 points and 10 rebounds, followed by Silas Lofton with 21 points and Jude Gallagher with 14 respectively. Gallagher also had 9 rebounds, followed by 8 from Wyatt Roden.
In Senior girls’ action, the Lady Warriors and the Lady Saints faced off to secure the regional title. Despite a phenomenal effort from Oaklee Lofton with an unheard-of 58 points, the Lady Warriors failed to secure the victory and fell short with a 74-71 loss. None of the remaining members of the team hit double digits and a sluggish night on defense allowed the Hope squad to outscore them. Lofton also had 18 rebounds and 7 steals. Her effort will lead her team into the state tournament this week, where they first play Hillsdale Christian School on Tuesday at 4pm.
Legacy Splits Games with Trinity Christian
LOCKESBURG, ARK-- In a night of make-up conference games, Legacy Academy hosted Trinity Christian of Texarkana’s varsity basketball teams on Monday, February 5, 2023. In Senior girls' action, the Lockesburg girls handily defeated the Texarkana squad 67-34. Legacy’s girls took the lead immediately and never gave it up. Legacy was led by point guard Oaklee Lofton, who gave her team 41 points, 10 rebounds, and 7 steals. Skylar Alexander added 11 points to the team’s total for double digits and had 4 rebounds, while Libbie Bartek and Reagan One each had 6 boards. Bartek also had 7 points. Trinity’s Kyleigh Purtle and Jordan Dougan each scored 12 points each.
In Senior boys’ action, Trinity outscored Legacy 30-8 in a treacherous first quarter from which they never could recover, despite a much better second half. The team took a serious blow early in the game when team captain Ozzy Toledano, a defensive hustler who has been averaging 15 points in recent games was benched due to an injury. It was confirmed later that he tore his ACL and will require surgery, putting him out as the Warriors go into critical post-season play. His absence in the game was felt. Manolo Vazquez had a double-double with 24 points and 14 rebounds, followed by Jude Gallagher with 13 points and 8 rebounds. Wyatt Roden also grabbed 8 boards for the Warriors. Trinity’s Gavin Owen (15), Seth Gunlock (26), and Philip Angier (13) each were in double-digit scoring to help secure their 70-48 victory.