By: Steven Pham
Photos by: Kobi Russom
Wichita, KS. - No. 5 Sunrise Christian Academy will move to 8-1 on the season after handing No. 6 La Lumiere their first loss of the season. Sunrise moved into first place in the NIBC standings with the 60-45 win last night. It was the same starting five for Sunrise; Dillon Hunter, Scotty Middleton, Gradey Dick, Mark Mitchell, and Cam Corhen.
La Lumiere settled in offensively right off the bat with an 8-2 start to the game. Sunrise crawled back into the game after a timeout with multiple defensive stops that led to easy transition points. After a quick run from both teams, Sunrise would lead 13-10 after the first quarter.
Dick starts the quarter with back-to-back threes to give Sunrise a 19-10 lead. La Lumiere answered with a 5-0 run to keep the game close. Sunrise was able to get in the bonus early for one-and-one free throws but they struggled to take advantage of those opportunities and build upon their lead. That allowed La Lumiere to get back into the game and go on a 13-4 run to close out the quarter. Sunrise was down 30-28 going into the half.
Sunrise came out aggressive after halftime and immediately went on a 7-0 run from Middleton’s mid-range shot and Corhen’s three-pointer and a tip-in. Middleton found his game offensively and took what the defense gave him. “They didn’t want to switch off Mark (Mitchell) so I set a lot of screens, moved without the ball a lot, and I just contributed offensively,” Middleton said.
Sunrise stayed aggressive and locked in defensively and held La Lumiere to only two points in the quarter. “We got a lot of fast breaks, we rebounded well, and really competed on the defensive end that led us to great offense,” Middleton said. All five Sunrise starters got involved and scored in the quarter to help spark a 23-2 run in the quarter. Sunrise led 51-32 at the end of the third.
Sunrise took their foot off the gas and allowed La Lumiere to cut into the lead and fight back. La Lumiere went on a 9-0 run to start the quarter as J.J. Starling accounted for 7 of those points. La Lumiere cut the Sunrise lead down to 10 points and that would be the closest margin for the rest of the game. After a timeout, Sunrise found some rhythm again offensively, got some stops defensively, and was able to create enough cushion to put the game away.
Sunrise shot 52% from the field, 43% from three, and went 9 for 17 (52%) at the free-throw line. Sunrise had 25 total rebounds, 17 defensive and 8 offensive. Sunrise had 12 assists, 2 blocks, and 8 steals. Sunrise’s starters had 56 of their 60 points last night.
Dick had 18 points on 7-10 shooting (4-6 from three), 1 rebound, 1 assist, and 2 steals. Mitchell went 5-10 from the field (7-12 FT), 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. Middleton had 11 points on 5-7 shooting (4-5 from two), 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 block. Hunter had 5 points on 2-5 shooting, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. Corhen had 5 points on 2-3 shooting and 4 rebounds.
Sunrise will travel to South Dakota for a matchup against Kenwood Academy at Hoophall Central on Friday, December 17th at 9 p.m. Stay tuned to read about how you can watch it, where you can watch it, and what to expect this upcoming Friday.