Lake Mead point guard Kai Madela doesn’t start games for the Eagles.
But he doesn’t need to, because he’s darn good at finishing them.
Madela sparked a 15-2 run in the fourth quarter to help Lake Mead’s boys basketball team engineer a 41-26 home victory over Calvary Chapel on Thursday night.
The shifty senior finished with 10 points, but it was his quickness and aggressiveness on both ends of the floor that helped the Eagles inch away from the Lions in the first half, and bury them in the second.
“Kai is one of our leaders. He’s the point guard and a lot of pressure is put on the point guard,” Lake Mead coach Jeff Newton said. “He’s the coach’s extension on the floor. He does an excellent job of doing whatever we ask.”
And on Thursday night, Madela was asked to defend and attack.
He guarded Calvary Chapel guard and two-time all-league honoree Elijah Martinez for much of the night and held him to three points.
Madela also scored six points in the first half to jump start the Eagles’ sluggish offense and stake them out to a 16-12 halftime lead.
“I needed to help kick-start (our offense),” Madela said. “It was the team, it wasn’t me … My teammates created a lot of open holes for me.”
The Lions hung around in the third quarter, but struggled to generate open looks in the fourth after Newton called for extended defensive pressure.
The Eagles (6-7, 3-2 2A Southern League) — and Madela — swarmed ball-handlers, contested shots and swallowed defensive rebounds to trigger their fast-break offense.
And put away Calvary Chapel (4-11, 1-5).
“Defensively, we played excellent all night,” Newton said. “Once we started to pressure them a little bit, not that our pressure was effective, but it seemed to stimulate us offensively. They got a little pep in their step.”
Pahranagat Valley 59, Virgin Valley 38 — At Alamo, Culen Highbe had 17 points as the Panthers rolled past the Bulldogs.
Richard Lewis added 16 points for Pahranagat Valley, which led 17-7 after one quarter.
Jason Brooks paced Virgin Valley with 11 points.
SLAM Academy 74, St. Kendrick’s (Australia) 46 — At SLAM Academy, Jalen Cunnignham poured in 31 points as the Bulls rolled to the win.
Jamaal Carr scored 16 for SLAM, which outscored St. Kendrick’s 28-12 in the second quarter to take a 40-24 halftime lead.