The freshman guard messed around and posted a triple double in the Lions’ 82-67 win Thursday night over Miles at Richmond Academy.
Taylor recorded a line of 16 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists to lead Paine.
“To come back from a long break, get the win and get my first triple double, it’s amazing,” Taylor said. “I’m going to cherish it, but at the same time I’ve got to move on to the next game.”
Mario Jordan posted a game-high 21 points as the Lions extended their winning streak to five games to remain atop the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference standings.
Paine (5-1, 4-0) played its first game in 26 days and it showed in the beginning. The Lions’ league-leading defense allowed seven buckets the first 5½ minutes before clamping down to allow 13 field goals the rest of the game.
“It was almost like the first five, six minutes they had Christmas legs,” Link said. “I hope people understand our guys are really playing hard. That’s why we’re winning. I’m proud of them.
Miles (4-4, 4-2) allowed its most points to an opponent this season. Paine shot 50 percent from the field on 19 assists. The Lions dominated the glass, 53 to 36, and held the Bears to 31 percent shooting from the floor.
Paine trailed 19-15 midway through the first half when it finally got in gear. Kenny Fluellen scored two of his 13 on a putback. Taylor followed with a game-tying 17-foot jumper.
The contest remained tied when the Lions pushed ahead. Taylor swished two free throws. Tony Baker followed with a 3-pointer. After a Miles turnover, James Devlin pulled up from 14 feet for a jumper. After another Bears turnover, Jordan tossed in a runner. Miles missed a pair of long-range attempts on the end. Jordan responded with a 3-pointer. Paine led 37-25 late in the half.
With its late run, the Lions stormed into intermission with a 14-point lead. Paine never let its lead slip from there.
• In the women’s game, Paine shot 24 percent from the field in a 60-35 loss to Miles. The Lady Lions (2-6, 2-2) committed 29 turnovers and never got on track on the offensive end.
Baiesha Johnson and Ciara Morris each scored seven points to lead Paine.