Defending Region 5-4A champion Lexington finds itself in an 0-2 hole at the start of the new conference title race.
The Wildcats suffered their second straight region loss on Tuesday night at Aiken, losing 60-36 to the fired-up Green Hornets. Lexington, which opened the 2009-10 campaign with seven straight wins now stands at 7-2 overall.
Lexington had no answer for Aiken’s pressure defense. In the end, the Wildcats score just 11 field goals, finding the range just one time in the second quarter when the Hornets took control of the game with a 17-4 run after the team played at an 11-11 draw in the opening eight minutes.
Matt Jergenson’s 10 points was the highlight of the night for Lexington.
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In other region outings, Richland Northeast improved to 5-1 overall, 2-0 in conference play with a 47-36 win over White Knoll, Irmo opened the 5-4A season with a 60-41 rout of Orangeburg-Wilkinson and Dutch Fork scored a surprisingly easy 83-69 win over North Augusta in the region opener for both teams.
Jason Powell’s Cavaliers received 14 points from Jarred Guest and 11 from Travis Hammonds, but the real story was RNE’s defense. White Knoll, which fell to 5-3 overall, did not have a single player finish with double digits in scoring.
Irmo wasted little time against the host Bruins, who are off to their worst start in school history. Jeremy Clinkscales scored 11 of his game high 18 points in the first quarter as the Yellow Jackets raced to a commanding 22-8 lead. Irmo’s lead grew to 45-15 by halftime thanks to a 19-6 run in the second quarter.
David Frazier and Jordan Roper backed up Clinkscales with 14 and 12 points, respectively.
Dutch Fork (4-3 overall) saw Brice Green erupt for 25 points as the Silver Foxes handed the visiting Yellow Jackets their first setback of the season. Teammates Eric Bethel and Dantae Shuler weren’t bad, either, with 19 and 18 points, respectively.
Irmo travels to face Aiken on Friday in the region headliner. Dutch Fork and White Knoll also hit the road. The Silver Foxes are at O-W and the T-Wolves play at North Augusta.
Richland Northeast and Lexington are done with region play until Jan. 5. The Cavaliers play this week at the Chick-fil-A Classic at RNE, while Lexington hosts a traveling team for Australia on Friday.