Landry-Walker’s chances of winning the Country Day Classic were killed on Thursday night and as per usual: The Butler did it.
Jared Butler scored 32 points, including 15 in the 3rd quarter, and the Riverside Rebels upended the Landry-Walker Charging Buccaneers 61-45 to advance to the semifinals of the Country Day Classic against Scotlandville.
Things were close early on as the Rebels led just 10-9 after the first quarter before pulling away and leading by double digits for the majority of the game. Rebels coach Timmy Byrd felt his team made improvements in every area against a quality opponent to separate themselves.
“Landry-Walker played really good defense and we didn’t shoot the ball well at all in the first quarter,” he said. “Our shots were too long and they played really good defense but once we hit a couple of shots I think our guys kind of got into a little bit of a rhythm.”
The Rebels also couldn’t have done without Butler playing lights out as he does so often. The Alabama commitment has his team flying high into the semi’s after defeating Hahnville 76-52 on Wednesday night.
“(Butler)’s a large part of our success,” said Byrd. “He’s got a good supporting cast and they’ve been playing together since the 8th grade so they’ve got great chemistry but I will say if he’s not the best player, he’s the second best player in the state and I personally think he’s the best.”
Butler was just happy to come out of the game with a win.
“Landry-Walker’s a tough team,” he said. “You’ve got to be really mentally tough against them and I think we were. I think our defense and our intensity picked up after the first quarter and once we did that our offense came through and we also kept shooting so we never lost confidence and that’s critical and I’m glad we got a great team win.”
The Rebels spoiled an 18-point effort by the Buccaneers’ Semaj Matthews. Landry-Walker coach Wilfred Bird Antoine was just focused on moving on with the rest of the season.
“You just got to put a game like this in your back pocket,” he said. “We’ve just got to prepare for the next game. There’s quick turnarounds in tournaments and you just have to get ready for the next one. We talked about the mistakes we made and hopefully we won’t make the same mistakes the next game."
After a close first quarter, Riverside began to separate themselves when Isiah Bingham drained a 3-pointer with 1:54 left in the first half to give the Rebel’s a 10-point lead that they took into halftime. The Bucs continued to fight but Butler’s 15-point third quarter kept the lead at 10 going into the fourth, 48-38. The Rebel’s offense and defense continued thriving, giving the Bucs too much to overcome as Riverside took the win.