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Studdard scores 18 to lead Southland to victory

AMERICUS – Southland Academy forward Chandler Studdard scored 18 points to lead the Raiders to a 42-32 victory over Lee-Scott Academy out of Auburn, AL. on Saturday, December 8, at Southland Academy.

With the win, the Raiders stay undefeated at 4-0.

While Studdard’s scoring and rebounding played a key role in the Raiders’ win, the way SA played defensively was also a key factor in their victory.

“Defense is where it has to start for us,” Southland head coach Rundy Foster said. “I thought we did a pretty good job defensively. Offensively, I thought I could have done a better job of getting us ready for what our guys saw out their tonight as far as their defense was concerned. I thought maybe they were going to go to something else defensively, and we weren’t as prepared as we needed to be. With that being said, I thought we made some good adjustments on the offensive end. I thought the kids stepped it up a little bit, and we did a good job.”

In addition to Studdard’s 18 points, Luke Law and Hunter McCain each had six points. Nathan Duke had five. Adam Smith scored three points, and both James Griffin and Landon Law each scored two points.

Southland guard Nathan Duke with the ball. Duke scored five points in the Raiders’ win.
Photo by Ken Gustafson

The Raiders jumped out to an 11-6 lead in the first quarter. Seven of those points were scored by Studdard. However, the Warriors kept it close as they only trailed 14-11 with 6:55 to go in the first half. With a little over six minutes to go, LSA got a steal and Conner McGinty was fouled while shooting. McGinty made one of two free throws, cutting the Raiders’ lead to 14-12. Max Foster was fouled at the other end and had a chance to extend the Raiders’ lead. Unfortunately, he missed both free throws.

However, Foster made up for it by scoring on the inside with a little over four minutes left in the half to give SA a 16-12 lead. With 3:33 left in the half, Studdard got an offensive rebound and was fouled while shooting. He made both free throws, extending Southland’s lead to 18-12. Studdard continued to be active on the offensive board, and made two more free throws after being fouled while shooting. The Raiders took control on the inside late in the first half and were able to score points. By the 2:11 mark, SA had a 22-12 lead.

Hunter McCain goes up to shoot. McCain scored six points in Southland’s win over Lee-Scott Academy.
Photo by Ken Gustafson

LSA’s Matthew Peak hit a three-pointer to pull the Warriors to within seven, but the Raiders went into halftime with a 26-17 lead.

Studdard led the Raiders at the half with 13 points. Five of those points came from the foul line. For Lee-Scott Academy, they were led in scoring in the first half by Peak. Six of his eight first-half points came from beyond the arc.

The Raiders opened the second half with a three pointer by Luke Law. However, the Warriors went on a 6-0 run to cut the Raiders’ lead to 29-23. The Raiders returned the favor by scoring eight unanswered points to take a 37-23 lead with a little over a minute left in the third quarter. Just before the quarter ended, LSA’s Sam Aldridge was fouled while shooting and made both free throws. The Raiders would start the final quarter with a 37-27 lead.

The Raiders began the fourth quarter with two free throws from Hunter McCain, who was fouled in the act of shooting. However, SA looked confused on offense, prompting Foster to call a timeout with 6:16 to go.

Studdard continued to drive to the basket and get fouled. He made two more free throws, extending the Raiders’ lead to 41-27 with under five minutes to go.

The Warriors had gone cold from the field and didn’t score until Aldridge hit two free throws. The Warriors continued their cold shooting, which gave the Raiders the luxury of moving the ball around to run some clock. With 1:53 to go, McGinty was fouled, but made only one free throw for LSA. They were not able to cut into the Raiders’ lead to make a serious push. The Raiders went on to win 42-32. For LSA, Sam Aldridge, Matthew Peak and Conner McGinty each scored eight points to lead the Warriors. Jared Nelson chipped in seven in the losing cause.

Up next for the Raiders is a trip to Cordele, GA on Monday, December 10, to take on Crisp Academy. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m.