Bynum’s career high 32 points leads Lanett past 7A Smiths Station
Published 8:02 pm Saturday, January 28, 2023
The Lanett varsity boys are peaking at the right time as the Panthers took down 7A Smiths Station 69-57 on Saturday.
Jr. Bynum was a machine for Lanett with a career high 32 points.
Bynum didn’t even realize he had 32 points.
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“I didn’t know until one of the coaches told me. I was just playing basketball,” Bynum said.
“It feels good. I didn’t think I would drop 30. Two weeks ago, I dropped 29. I didn’t know if I could get to 30 because dropping 29 was hard. Dropping 32 boosts my confidence. Coach McCants just tells us to fight and not settle. My next goal is 40. Shout out to Elijah Whitfield, my point guard.”
Lanett head coach Tay McCants was thrilled to get a win over a much larger team.
“I think they looked at our record and just felt like we haven’t been playing good ball,” McCants said.
“They came out a little flat, and our guys punched Smiths Station in the mouth.”
The Lanett varsity boys used their speed to open the first quarter with a 10-0 run.
Smiths Station adjusted to Lanett’s speed, but Lanett still took a 17-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Both teams played a little cleaner and faster in the second quarter, but Lanett’s ball movement was enough to keep their lead at 33-26 at halftime.
Lanett continued their transition success in the third quarter, but Smiths Station started to get more aggressive on defense.
Lanett had a five point lead heading into the fourth quarter, but Smiths Station’s full court press started to create some issues for Lanett.
Lanett had a six point lead with 27 seconds left in the game, but one of Smiths Station’s coaches received a technical foul after a disagreement with the officials.
Bynum hit three out of his four free throws to give Lanett a nine point lead with 25 seconds left and secure the victory.
McCants was pleased with his team’s intensity at the start of the game.
“It’s something we emphasized in practice,” McCants said.
“Every non-region game, we get punched in the mouth first. I think we did a good job of coming out and punching somebody else in the face this time.”
McCants also knows how big the win is for his program.
“To beat a 7A program like that gives us some confidence and some push for the playoffs,” McCants said.
“They’re ready to play Valley and Handley next week. All 11 players played well. Everyone produced. Elijah Whitfield, Junior Bynum and Jarrious Goodman all did a good job rebounding. We’re small, so we have to be scrappy.”
McCants purposely scheduled a tough final few games to prepare his team for the postseason.
“The schedule we have is not a dumbed down schedule,” McCants said.
“If we can handle these 5A, 6A, and 7A teams, we’ll be OK in the playoffs. We need to be more physical. I want to match their energy. Maybe we can take that energy into the playoffs. We’re a 2A team, but we’re playing 7A ball.”