KILGORE — Residing in oil country, the Kilgore College Rangers know all about gushers and dry wells.
On Saturday, the Rangers survived an early gusher of 3-pointers by CYM Prep and mounted a comeback when the long-range well went dry for the visitors to earn a 90-83 win at Masters Gymnasium.
The Rangers (8-2) found themselves down by four at the half as CYM Prep knocked down 10 triples in the first 20 minutes. KC fell behind by 10 in the second half, but the barrage of 3-pointers slowed down (4-for-12 in the second half) and the Rangers began dominating in the paint.
Cameron Gooden and D’Rell Robers finished with 17 points apiece for the Rangers. Jeremy Lefort, Rodrique Andela, Michael Thomas, Assane Ndiaye and Stephan Morris all scored 10 points, Lefort added 12 rebounds, and Gooden dished out four assists.
Mike Lenoir scored 34 points in the loss for CYM Prep, drilling eight 3-pointers. He also handed out eight assists and added five rebounds. Balsa Bazovic hit six times from beyond the arc and finished with 27 points.
The Rangers sprinted out to a 13-4 lead early and led 21-12 after a turnaround jumper in the paint by Morris at the 10:59 mark of the first half, but Lenoir hammered home a triple to spark a 16-2 run for the visiting Yellowjackets.
KC trailed by 11 after a 3-pointer by Bazovic, but managed to cut the deficit to 44-40 at the break.
CYM Prep stayed in front thanks to an occasional 3-pointer falling in the second half, but Thomas scored eight points during a 12-4 run that got KC close and Roberts grabbed a rebound and put it back to tie things at 66-66 with 8:22 remaining.
A layup by Ndiaye 22 seconds later gave the Rangers their first lead since the 9:09 mark of the first half, and KC began asserting itself inside to pull away
An old-fashioned 3-point play by Roberts pushed the KC lead to eight (82-74) with 2:31 remaining, and a couple of free throws by Thomas made it an 86-77 lead a minute later.
KC boosted the lead to 90-80 on back-to-back hoops from Thomas and Gooden in the final minute before Lenoir hit a 25-footer at the buzzer for CYM Prep to make the final 90-83.
The Rangers will return to Region XIV Conference action at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at home against Coastal Bend.