Landrum runs away with win over Polk County
&dquo;He&squo;s done everything that I&squo;ve ever asked him to do,&dquo; head coach Lyn Smith said.
This season, Smith decided that he was going to do something special for Thompson.
At the beginning of the season, Thompson was added to the eligibility list, which means that at some point this season, Thompson was going to play.
That chance came for Thompson on Friday night at Polk County, where the Cardinals ran away with a 91-57 victory.
Thompson dressed out and if there was a point in the game that Landrum was in firm control, Thompson was going to get to play.
The night started out promising for Thompson and the Cardinals. Landrum jumped out an 8-2 run. Alex Wilson grabbed a rebound and powered it back up for two points. Dustin Morris hit two free throws. Jake McClure and DeShaun Hall finished the run with a basket apiece.
Polk&squo;s first nine points were scored by Trenton Carson who hit his only five shots of the game, but left early due to a groin injury. It&squo;s just another in a line of injuries that have plagued the Wolverines in the early part of the season. By the end of the first quarter, the Cardinals had a 23-11 lead. The second quarter wasn&squo;t much better for Polk. Carson hit his fifth and final basket, but had to leave the game.
Landrum&squo;s Wilson took over. The senior post player scored six straight points, but it was his final points of the second quarter that brought the Cardinal crowd to its feet.
With a 45-26 lead with seconds to go, Wilson grabbed a rebound off the rim and powered down a dunk that brought the crowd noise up a few decibels. The Landrum lead continued to expand after the half. Landrum finished the third quarter with a 70-39 lead.
As the fourth quarter progressed, the crowd began calling for Thompson to enter the game. At several points, a chant of &dquo;we want Clay&dquo; erupted.
Finally with just over two minutes left in the game, Thompson checked in and the crowd was louder than it had been all night. At several intervals, Thompson pumped up the crowds. He took three shots. The first missed wildly, but the second and third had chances to go in.
&dquo;It was amazing,&dquo; Thompson said after the game and quickly diverted any attention from himself.
&dquo;I don&squo;t do anything,&dquo; he said. &dquo;They do everything.&dquo;
Wilson led the charge for Landrum. He had 26 points and 16 rebounds. Jacob Hatchette (10), Hall (14), Morris (10) and McClure (13) all scored in double-digits.
&dquo;We came out strong and executed well,&dquo; Smith said. &dquo;It feels good (to beat Polk) because they&squo;ve had our number the last couple of years.&dquo;
Polk was led by Carson&squo;s 11 points and Andre Overholt&squo;s nine points. Polk had ten players score.
&dquo;We haven&squo;t quit so far this season,&dquo; Polk coach Craig Culbreth said. &dquo;I felt like we quit some today.&dquo;