Tay­lor’s late surge helps Collinsville beat O’Fal­lon and stay per­fect on sea­son

Belleville News-Democrat (Sunday) - - Sports - BY DEAN CRIDDLE dcrid­[email protected]

On a night when the Collinsville Ka­hoks were any­thing but flaw­less, they re­mained per­fect for the sea­son at the O’Fal­lon Pan­ther Dome Fri­day.

Ju­nior guard Ray-Sean Tay­lor scored five of his 23 points in a 58-sec­ond span mid­way through the fourth quar­ter to help thwart an O’Fal­lon come­back and the Ka­hoks broke away late for a 61-48 win in the South­west­ern Con­fer­ence opener for both teams.

Get­ting a pair of 3-point jumpers by sopho­more Drew Tebbe, O’Fal­lon cut a 17-point deficit to 47-41 with 3 min­utes 40 sec­onds re­main­ing. But Tay­lor scored on con­sec­u­tive trips down the floor and com­bined with Cawhan Smith to make two of four free throws to ex­tend the lead to 53-41 with 2:43 left in the game.

O’Fal­lon (2-2) would get no closer as Collinsville, com­ing off a tour­na­ment cham­pi­onship at the Her­rin Thanks­giv­ing Clas­sic last week, im­r­poved to 6-0.

The win also gives Collinsville coach Darin Lee early-sea­son brag­ging rights. Lee’s nephew, Kyle Dis­mukes is a se­nior guard for O’Fal­lon. Dis­mukes led the way for the Pan­thers on Fri­day with 14 points. The 6-1 Dis­mukes also hit a long 3-point jumper right in front of his un­cle in the sec­ond quar­ter.

“Yes, he did,’’ Darin Lee said af­ter the game. “Kyle does a nice job. I’ll tell you, he plays hard.’’

While Dis­mukes led the Pan­thers, it was Tay­lor who was clearly the best player on the Pan­ther Dome court. Show­ing his range early, Tay­lor his a pair of 3-point jumpers and scored seven points in the first quar­ter as Collinsville took a 16-12 lead. The Ka­hoks would never trail. “I thought we played well. We were up, I think 15 in the third quar­ter and they (O’Fal­lon) cut it to six. We can’t let up,’’ Tay­lor said. “Sur­prised to be 6-0?.... No, not re­ally. We just have to come out and play hard every night. We’ve got some­thing to prove this year.”

As does O’Fal­lon, which af­ter open­ing 2-1 had its fi­nal game of the Al­ton Tip-off Clas­sic can­celed when a fight late in the game be­tween Al­ton and RiverviewGar­dens re­sulted in of­fi­cials pulling the plug on the rest of the tour­na­ment.

O’Fal­lon coach Brian Mu­niz, although dis­ap­pointed with the fi­nal out­come, liked that his Pan­thers bat­tled back and gave

them­selves a chance late in the game.

“We’re ex­cited to see how these younger kids and older play­ers on this team blend in to­gether. So far we’ve played pretty well,’’ Mu­niz said. “Tonight we fell be­hind by 15-17 points and cut it to a two posses­sion game when we got within six points. I was pleased with the ef­fort.

“But then we fouled 80 feet from the bas­ket where there was re­ally no rea­son to.

“We thought that maybe we could foul them late in the game and they would miss some free throws. It didn’t hap­pen.’’

Mar­shall Har­ri­son added 14 points for Collinsville while Zane Baker added 10. Dis­mukes 14 points led O’Fal­lon, while 14 year-old fresh­man Caleb Bur­ton chipped in with 11.

Dis­mukes hugged his un­cle Darin Lee dur­ing the player in­tro­duc­tions be­fore the start of the game. The two then spoke briefly and shook hands af­ter the game.

“It’s kind of neat to be play­ing against him (Lee) when he coaches,’’ Dis­mukes said.

JIMMY J. SIM­MONS

Collinsville’s Ray-Sean Tay­lor drives against O’Fal­lon’s Caleb Bur­ton dur­ing Fri­day’s con­fer­ence game at O’Fal­lon High School.

JIMMY J. SIM­MONS

O’Fal­lon Quinn Har­ris and Collinsville Cawhan Smith bat­tle for the ball dur­ing Fri­day’s con­fer­ence game at O’Fal­lon High School.

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