Bruins third in Upward Classic

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LHS basketball

By Robert Howey



Lancaster High School captured third place as the top Palmetto State finisher in the fourth annual Upward Classic at the Dorman High School Arena on Friday night.

The third-ranked Bruins, thanks to Sindarius Thornwell’s driving layup, defeated Bishop O’Connell High School of Arlington, Va., 60-58 to capture the tournament consolation game.

Thornwell, the Bruins’ all-tournament pick in the four-day event at DHS, scored 16 points to boost Lancaster to the two-point win.

The game was tied at 58-all with only seconds to play and Thornwell drove in for the winning basket.

Thornwell hit 12 second-half points, including the game winner.

“We needed a big play in a big game and Sindarius came through,” LHS coach Ricardo Priester said. “He had an outstanding tournament for us over four days.

“Overall, I was pleased with our play,” he said. “Our thinking in playing in a prestigious tournament like this was to play against top teams to be prepared for tough region play.”

Thornwell scored 97 points over four days to boost the winners.

Thornwell had six rebounds and four assists in the win which pushed Lancaster’s record to 12-1.

Bishop O’Connell took a 20-14 lead after one period, but LHS, with a 15-7 second-period run, held a 29-27 lead at the half.

Bruins’ senior guard Alan Robinson, who paced Lancaster with 20 points, netted 14 in the first half. Robinson drained six treys and added four rebounds in the Lancaster victory.

The Bruins held a 43-38 edge after three periods and held on for the two-point win. C.D. Pelham added a solid game for Lancaster, netting 12 points and had eight rebounds. Pelham averaged a double-double for the tourney.

KeAnthony Foster and Duece Dunlap scored six points each for Lancaster.

Romelo Trimble paced the 9-3 Knights with 25.

Damall Gregory scored 12 and Rashad Kelly hit 10.

“This was a good experience for us and a key factor in our play was the support we had from our fans,” Priester said. “Some of those fans were here all week and we appreciate they’re backing. It meant a lot to our team and impacted our play.”

In the championship game, Olympic, which defeated Lancaster in the semifinals to advance to the Upward Classic title game, downed Charlotte area foe and defending N.C. state champion West Charlotte, 71-68 for the title.

Josh Smith, the Clemson fall signee, paced the 13-0 Trojans with 20 points and seven rebounds.

Austin Dasent hit 14. Allerik Freeman, the tournament MVP, scored 13. Sean Anthony scored 10 and had six assists for Olympic, the top-rated team in N.C. boys prep basketball.

Lancaster went 3-1 in the tournament with its other wins over Chattahoochee High School (Ga.), 67-47 and Dudley High of Greensboro, N.C., 65-45.

The Bruins opened the 2012 portion of their schedule at home on Tuesday night against South Pointe. Lancaster visits Chester on Friday before opening region play Tuesday when it travels to Spartanburg High to battle the Vikings.