|Highlands Pulls Away from Anderson in Second Half|
|PHOTO: G. Michael Graham. Highlands senior Jack Hegge brings the ball up-court in a recent game.|
They pulled away in the second half to do just that with a 72-42 victory over Cincinnati Anderson. Highlands finished 13-15 last year and last won 14 games in a season during the 2010-11 campaign going 14-16. Highlands led 31-28 at halftime.
"We really played phenomenal team defense in the second half," Listerman said. "We made an adjustment and switched all the screens in their motion and flex (sets) and really caused their three-point shooters problems. We really didn't give them any good looks until late in the second half."
Senior Ryan Leigh did something not seen in a while at Highlands. Leigh made 13-of-17 shots for 76 percent including 11-of-15 three-point tries for 73 percent on his way to 37 points. Leigh came into the game averaging 11.6 points per game good for second on the team.
"We just kept feeding him the ball and he'd just keep on making them," said Will Salmon, Highlands senior power forward. "We were going crazy on the bench. It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen."
Leigh also had two assists, one steal and two rebounds. Listerman said that is a school record for the most three-pointers made in a game as far as the staff can tell. The state record for most triples in a game is 17 set by David DeMarcus of Lexington Sayre set back in 1989 against Millersburg Military School.
"Once the guys recognized he had a hot hand and we started to pull away, they wanted Ryan to shoot and they were looking for him," Listerman said. "Ryan's put in a tremendous amount of work. A night like (Tuesday) just doesn't happen. He's shooting the ball well. When he hit number 11, the bench really erupted."
Highlands senior Ben Sisson had another big scoring night scoring 17 making 8-of-13 shots. Sisson also had six rebounds, one assist and two blocked shots.
The Bluebirds made 27-of-43 shots for 63 percent including 13-of-19 three-point tries for 69 percent and 5-of-6 free throws for 83 percent. Highlands also won the rebounding battle, 26-22 and had 18 assists, five steals, three blocked shots, 10 fouls and five turnovers. Senior Nate Roberts had five assists to lead Highlands.
Anderson made 16-of-46 shots for 35 percent including 8-of-23 from three-point range for 35 percent and both free throws. Anderson also had eight assists, one steal, no blocked shots, 11 fouls and 13 turnovers. Michael Brandy led Anderson with 11 points and James Camden scored 10.
The Bluebirds travel to Frankfort (17-5) on Friday. Game time is 7:30 p.m.