WH boys beat Lions for first win of season

White Hall's Jordan Raspberry gets the ball knocked out of his hand by Hamptons Zion Stewart in a hard fought game on Tuesday at White Hall. (Special to The Commercial/William Harvey)

A fast start and excellent free throw shooting lifted the White Hall boys' basketball team to its first win of the season Tuesday night.

The Bulldogs never trailed in an 84-61 home win against Hamburg.

White Hall (1-1) opened the game on an 11-0 run and eventually led by as much as 17-4 in a dominant first quarter.

Hamburg (0-1) closed the gap in the second quarter and cut the lead to single digits multiple times, but the Lions never got closer than 5 points. White Hall pulled away in the second half.

White Hall coach Josh Hayes said the Bulldogs played hard.

"Made some mistakes, which is a part of it," Hayes said. "Made probably more than I wanted, but what I saw was, I saw fight. I saw my bench guys not drop off the energy and the effort that the starters came with and kind of set the tone for it."

The Bulldogs lived at the free-throw line in the first half after drawing fouls with ease. White Hall shot 15 of 21 from the line, helping the Bulldogs lead 42-30 at halftime. White Hall finished the game 21 of 29.

Jai'Chaunn Hayes scored a game-high 25 points, with Jordan Rasberry following with 21. Hayes said the Bulldogs needed someone to step up the way Rasberry did to take some pressure off Jai'Chaunn.

"Jordan filled it up today, but he didn't just settle for 3-pointers," Hayes said. "He attacked the rim. He got to the free throw line, and his energy and effort was the best I've seen it in four years. So, his game was probably more important than Jai's, because Jai got us going, and then what happened from there? Jordan got going, and so we kind of had a duo going, which we haven't had in a while."

Zion Stewart led Hamburg with 20 points.

The Bulldogs scored the first 11 points before the Lions took advantage of some turnovers to get on the board. White Hall didn't waver, responding with a 6-0 run. The Bulldogs led 19-9 after the first quarter with 8 of their points coming from the free throw line.

Hamburg opened the second quarter with a quick 5 points to cut the lead in half. The teams traded buckets for the next few minutes before White Hall got back to the free throw line, going on a 9-2 run with 7 of those points coming from the stripe.

Jai'Chaunn Hayes said the early lead helped the Bulldogs withstand the Lions' run.

"When they made runs, it couldn't really hurt us, because then we came back and made a run," he said. "We really closed every gap they made with us being so ahead in the first [quarter]."

Hamburg cut the lead to 46-36 early in the third quarter but never got closer. White Hall ballooned its lead to 61-44 by the end of the third and kept pulling away with a 23-point fourth. With some of the reserve players getting playing time toward the end, White Hall finished with 11 different players scoring.