WHEELING - Linsly's Anthony Wallace and Magnolia all-stater Mark Winters put on a show that may not soon be forgotten Friday night at Stifle Fieldhouse. When all was said and done it was Wallace and his Cadets teammates who escaped with a victory.
Wallace was nearly unstoppable, scoring a game-high 43 points, however it was his 12 of 12 showing from the line in the fourth quarter that kept the Blue Eagles at bay and led to a 76-69 victory in front of a large, enthusiastic crowd on the Linsly campus.
Coach James Wallace watched his club even its record at 7-7 while Dave Tallman's team dropped its second road contest of the week and stands at 9-4.
Linsly’s Toddy Goodwin-Rowe (22) takes a shot while guarded by Magnolia’s Zach Wilhoite (13) and Mark Winters (11) during Friday night’s game.
While Anthony Wallace was busy dropping in 13 of 22 field-goal attempts including five 3s, Winters, a Wheeling Jesuit University recruit, was busy scoring 37 points on 16 of 27 shooting with a pair of bonus bombs.
''Anthony is a great player,'' James Wallace said. ''And the team did a very good job finding the hot hand, which was him. You could just see his confidence building and building and he was doing a heck of a job getting open.
''I felt like it was a great team effort and everyone executed the offense well, and got Anthony some great looks.
''As far as defensively, I know that Winters scored 37, but we did a very good job limiting some other kids and we rebounded the ball well.''
Linsly scored 10 of the game's first 12 and grabbed an 18-16 lead after one. Magnolia took its second and final lead on a Winters 3-pointer with 5:23 to play in the half that gave Magnolia a 24-23 edge. But again, it was the Cadets with a two-point lead, 34-32, at the half.
The teams continued trading baskets in the third quarter as the hosts expanded the margin to 46-41. But an early fourth-quarter spurt provided the difference. After the Eagles cut the deficit to 46-43 on a Winters jumper to begin the frame, Linsly used an 11-2 burst to take the game's biggest lead at 57-45. Wallace keyed the run with nine of the 11 points.
Magnolia did get as close as five down the stretch, but Wallace, who dropped in 21 in the fourth, hit 12 straight free throws and the Cadets were 15 of 16.
''You hate to ever say you had a good loss, but this is the kind of game that makes a team better either way,'' Magnolia coach Dave Tallman said. ''Linsly is a very athletic team and this is our third game this week. When you get to Charleston you have to play three in three days to have a shot to win it all, and that is what we want to prepare for.
''Wallace had a great night, but we should have doubled him up more and made him give up the ball. I felt like we were a little impatient at times on defense, but he is a real nice player.''
Jibri Blount also had an outstanding night with 16 points and nine rebounds while Toddy Goodwin-Rowe finished with nine points for the winners. Stephen Rogalski backed Winters with 11, Zach Wilhoite had 10 and Preston Boswell nine for the Blue Eagles.