Hoops roundup: Jackson, Benson lead Lions to opening win

Jason Brown
The Leavenworth Times
Shown is Lansing senior guard Malik Benson.

After weeks of uncertainty, the winter high school athletic season kicked off Friday for schools in Leavenworth County with three schools in action for basketball and the Leavenworth Challenger wrestling tournament Saturday.

Lansing opened its basketball schedule with a United Kansas Conference matchup against De Soto Friday.

The Wildcats took an early 4-0 lead off the tip, but senior guard Malik Benson reeled off six straight points to tie the game at six. Senior guard Jake Jackson put the Lions ahead and scored seven consecutive points himself, forcing De Soto to burn a timeout down 13-6. The Wildcats stopped the run coming out of the timeout and cut the lead to 15-10 by the end of the first quarter.

Benson opened the second quarter with back-to-back baskets followed by a Jackson layup to give Lansing a 22-12 lead. Senior Peyton Basler joined Benson and Jackson in the scoring column with a free throw to keep Lansing ahead 10. The Lions pushed the lead to 20 behind baskets from Basler, Benson and Jackson and led 38-18 at halftime.

The Lions maintained their 20-point lead early in the third quarter but the Wildcats began to make progress, outscoring Lansing 18-6. The Lions bounced back in the fourth quarter and closed out a 57-45 win.

Benson led the Lions with 24 points, going 8/10 from the field and 6/6 from the free-throw line. Jackson had 21 and shot a perfect 6/6 from the field. Basler grabbed seven rebounds while scoring six points.

Lansing is scheduled to host Spring Hill Friday. The girls are scheduled to tip at 5:45 with the boys to follow. The games will be streamed on the NFHS Network.

In other action

Pleasant Ridge hosted Maur Hill Friday with both the boys and girls in action. The boys picked up a 64-53 win behind three double-digit scorers. Devin Stutz led the way with 15, followed by Justin Johnston with 12 and Connor Gibson with 10.

The girls fell to the Ravens 44-34 despite trailing just 31-28 going into the fourth quarter. Gabbriella Watkins and Audrey Barnes led the Lady Rams with nine points each.

Leavenworth girl’s basketball fell to Spring Hill Friday 58-51 despite getting 22 points from senior guard Aleshia Jones. Jones also added seven rebounds, two assists and four steals. Kaylee McLain had seven points and four rebounds.

The boys fell to Spring Hill by a score of 58-28.

Shown is Lansing senior guard Jake Jackson.