CUSTER — Mason County Eastern’s boys basketball team had just a five-point lead at halftime, but exploded in the third period to pull away from Walkerville and take a big 77-43 victory Wednesday night at home in the Western Michigan D League.

Wyatt Crawford put on a clinic in 3-point shooting for the Cardinals, drilling eight shots from beyond the arc and finishing with 28 points to lead all scorers in the game. He made seven 3-point shots in the second half.

Eli Shoup had a big night for the Cardinals as well, pumping in 26 points and hauling down 10 rebounds. James Drake followed him scoring with 13 points, hauled down six rebounds and picked off seven steals.

The Wildcats were led in scoring by Jesus Santillan who dropped in 18 points, while Collin Chase added 10.

“Walkerville played us real tough the first half,” Eastern head coach Mark Forner said. “They were knocking down shots, knocking down 3-pointers.

“But, Wyatt got hot the second half. Those 3-pointers are always nice. It was a tale of two halves. We were flat the first half, but came out and played really sharp the second half.

“Drake gave us a nice lift with is offensive production. We’ll need that down the road, I’m sure.”

The Cardinals finished the first quarter with a 16-12 lead, and outscored the Wildcats, 12-11 in the second for a five-point edge, 28-23 at the half.

But the Cardinals sent the Wildcats reeling in the third period, going on a 28-9 run to blow the game open, taking a 24-point lead, 56-32 into the fourth period.

It was the Cardinals sixth straight win and raised their record to 9-2 overall and 8-1 in the league. Eastern resumes WMD play on Friday when it travels to Bear Lake.

Walkerville fell to 0-9 for the season and 0-7 in the league. The Wildcats are next scheduled to see action Friday at Pentwater.