Imhotep snaps skid against Chester

Dueling for a loose ball are Imhotep's Khalief Tinley (left) and Chester's Gabe Adesina. Leading by just two points at halftime, the Panthers stepped up their game in the second half. MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / Staff Photographer
Dueling for a loose ball are Imhotep's Khalief Tinley (left) and Chester's Gabe Adesina. Leading by just two points at halftime, the Panthers stepped up their game in the second half. MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / Staff Photographer
Posted: January 20, 2014

Even with the slight lead his team had at halftime of Saturday night's clash against fellow Southeastern Pennsylvania power Chester, Imhotep Charter coach Andre Noble was anything but pleased.

Just ask Devin Liggeons.

"He was getting on us about our intensity," the junior forward said. "He said we needed to be more physical, for us to get after it like we really wanted it."

The Panthers were considerably sharper after intermission and, in ending their losing skid against the Clippers, posted a 59-52 victory in the Kobe Bryant Scholastic Play-By-Play Classic at Harriton.

Despite committing 10 turnovers and making only 1 of 10 attempts from behind the arc, Imhotep was in front, 22-20, at the break.

"Coach Noble told us to stop taking long shots and for our bigs to start attacking the rim," said junior Sean Lloyd, who came over from Haverford School. "He wanted our guards to get in the lane and distribute."

With 12 points and six rebounds off the bench, the 6-foot-3, 180-pound Liggeons was selected as the Panthers' most valuable player.

"He's been consistent for us," Noble said of the third-year varsity contributor. "He's a tremendous leader, never complains. He contributes in whatever way he can."

Lloyd shot 10 for 15 from the line (5 for 6 in the fourth quarter) en route to 14 points. He also grabbed six boards and made three steals.

"We didn't play as well as we could have, but we beat a pretty good team," Lloyd said. "We'll take it, but we need to get better."

Imhotep, ranked No. 6 in Southeastern Pennsylvania by The Inquirer, improved to 12-4 overall; No. 9 Chester, which committed 21 turnovers, including 12 in the first half, slipped to 9-3.

"When we didn't get in the flow early on, I had a feeling we were in trouble," Clippers coach Larry Yarbray said. "You start like that, you can tell what type of game it's going to be."

For the Panthers, Basil Thompson (nine points) and Deion Evans (six) combined for 18 rebounds, with 13 coming on the offensive end. The two helped keep Chester's Tyrell Sturdivant, a 6-8 senior and Stony Brook commit, scoreless.

At the end of the third quarter, Thompson's putback and fastbreak layup capped a 7-2 spurt and put Imhotep in front, 39-33. Midway through the fourth, Liggeons' bucket increased the spread to 10, 49-39.

Mahir Johnson paced Chester with 20 points and eight boards. Keyonte Watkins and sophomore Marquis Collins delivered 12 and eight points, respectively, off the bench.

Imhotep Charter 11 11 17 20 - 59

Chester 10 10 13 19 - 52

IC: Jakwon Jones 7, Sean Lloyd 14, Basil Thompson 9, Devin Liggeons 12, Jaekwon Carlyle 2, Deion Evans 6, Daron Russell 7, Khalief Tinley 2.

C: Khaleeq Campbell 1, Conrad Chambers 7, Keyonte Watkins 12, Gabe Adesina 4, Mahir Johnson 20, Marquis Collins 8.


robrien@phillynews.com

@ozoneinq

www.inquirer.com/ozone

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