HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL

Leander downs Round Rock to win fifth straight game

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An efficient defensive performance coupled with a poor shooting night was the perfect mixture for Leander on Tuesday.

The Lions traveled to Round Rock and beat the Dragons 45-38 to win their fifth game in a row and move into sole possession of second place in District 13-6A with just a couple weeks left in the regular season.

"They're staying together, they're being coachable and they're sticking to the game plan," Leander head coach Clint Bradley said. "That's all we can ask for."

Leander sophomore Noah Robledo led the offense with 11 points. A trio of seniors contributed as Landon Sisson scored 10 points and Hunter Stevens and Kyce Wilson each finished with nine points.

Round Rock senior Carter Ford scored 12 points and junior Jack Peterson added 11 for the Dragons.

After hitting 11 3-pointers in their win against Vandegrift last Friday night, the Dragons only hit five shots from deep in Tuesday's loss. At one point in the second half, Round Rock head coach Brent Murphy could only look at the hoop and shake his head as a shot clanged off the iron.

"It's really hard to get mad at (the team) on bad shooting nights," Murphy said. "They're executing our stuff and getting their feet set and then the ball doesn't go in the hole."

Leander sits at 9-4, just half a game ahead of Round Rock (8-4) and two games behind district-leading Hendrickson (11-2). The Lions host McNeil - losers of two straight games - on Friday, while the Dragons travel to face surging Stony Point, winners of four straight.

The Lions controlled the tempo from the start on Tuesday, jumping out to a three-point lead after one quarter and bumping that to five points at halftime, shifting between zone and man-to-man defense.

Leander started the second half with a 10-2 run and pushed its lead to 14 points, but Peterson hit a pair of late 3-pointers for the Dragons to keep the game close.

"One of the big words we put on the board for this game is composure," Bradley said. "I've got some pretty good senior leadership with this group. We knew they were going to make a run here and there, just stay the course.

Round Rock cut the lead to just three points with a little more than three minutes to go before the Lions once again took control of the clock.

"Getting rebounds and getting stops on defense because that's where it starts," Robledo said. "Offensively, we were running the clock down and making sure we're getting good consistent offensive plays."

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