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NEWBERRY – Caio Rita scored 18 points Tuesday night to lead Laurens Academy past W.W. King, 41-26, in the first round of the S.C. Independent School Association Region 1-A basketball tournament at Newberry Academy.

Rita connected on 9-of-16 from the field to lead the Crusaders, followed by Diamonte Grant with eight points on 3-of-5 shooting. Two of Grant’s baskets were 3-pointers. Also scoring for Laurens Academy (12-14) were Luke Kerber (6), Clarence Bertoli (5) and Thomas Lowry (4). The Crusaders hit 18-of-43 field-goal attempts and 2-of-7 free throws.

A 12-7 third quarter enabled LA to pull away in the third quarter after leading 20-11 at halftime.

Joe Sauls led the Knights with 10 points, followed by Trevor Fulmer with nine. King hit 11-of-39 shots from the field and 2-of-5 from the foul line.