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Logan spreads wealth in win over Lake Land

  • Damion Taylor passes the ball Wednesday night.

    Damion Taylor passes the ball Wednesday night.
    Justin Walker Photo

  • David Sloan takes a shot.

    David Sloan takes a shot.
    Justin Walker Photo

  • Kasey Elam finishes an alley-oop.

    Kasey Elam finishes an alley-oop.
    Justin Walker Photo

  • David Sloan

    David Sloan
    Justin Walker Photo

  • Jaiveon Eaves

    Jaiveon Eaves
    Justin Walker Photo

  • Vonnie Patterson

    Vonnie Patterson
    Justin Walker Photo

  • Kyle Smithpeters

    Kyle Smithpeters
    Justin Walker Photo

updated: 2/22/2018 3:56 AM

CARTERVILLE -- The John A. Logan College men's basketball team spread the wealth in ripples Wednesday night in downing Lake Land, 120-103, to stay in a first-place tie at the top of the Great Rivers Athletic Conference standings.

Seven players reached double figures for the Vols and another was a shot away in the physical, high-scoring affair.

Ronnie Carson and Derek Hawthorne Jr. shared team-high honors with 19 points each. Jonah Jackson hit four 3-pointers and had 15, while Damion Taylor and David Sloan both had 14. Jaiveon Eaves and Romelo Burrell had 12 each. Vonnie Patterson was right behind with eight and Quamain Nelson had six.

"We played as unselfish as you can play," said Logan coach Kyle Smithpeters. "We had a lot of guys step up on the offensive end."

Sloan, who leads the NJCAA Division I in assists per game with a 9.3 average, was marked for 16 against the Lakers. The speedy point guard also pulled down a team-high eight rebounds.

Lake Land (16-11, 9-7) took it right at the Vols early and were ahead 29-28 before a 3-pointer from Eaves and a dunk by Hawthorne put Logan ahead to stay.

But although the Vols led by as many as 17 points in the first half -- reaching that at 65-48 on a layup by Eaves -- the pesky Lakers pulled as close as 78-76 on a layup by Tra Landers with 12 minutes remaining.

Logan answered with a 23-5 run.

Taylor had three baskets in the outburst, which also featured five points from both Hawthorne and Sloan. It was capped by a floater from Carson and a 3-pointer by Jackson that gave Logan a 101-81 lead with six minutes to play.

"This was a wild one," Smithpeters said. "We kind of hurt ourselves early. We allowed them to gain some confidence and allowed them to do some things they're really good at. They can go right at you and they proved it tonight.

"Give them credit. They weren't going away. They fought very hard."

Logan is now 22-5 overall and 12-3 in the GRAC, matched with Southwestern Illinois College with three league games remaining. The next game happens to be against SWIC, on Saturday in Carterville at Brewer Gymnasium, where the Vols have a 12-1 record this season.

"That's going to be a tough one," Smithpeters said. "We're both tied for first and we did what we were supposed to do tonight. So it should be a championship-caliber basketball game on Saturday."

SWIC (22-5, 12-3) did its part to stay tied for first by routing Southeastern Illinois College, 124-66, in Harrisburg on Wednesday night. The Blue Storm beat Logan on a shot at the buzzer, 83-82, in the first meeting in Belleville on Jan. 17.

Saturday's game is scheduled to tip off at 3 p.m.

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