Cavaliers keep Phantoms down

Published 8:38 pm Saturday, January 18, 2014

Melissa Glover Photo Conference play: Lakeland High School senior Marche' Everette puts up a shot against visiting Phoebus High School on Friday night.

Melissa Glover Photo
Conference play: Lakeland High School senior Marche’ Everette puts up a
shot against visiting Phoebus High School on Friday night.

Lakeland High School jumped out to a 20-2 lead in the first quarter against visiting Phoebus High School on Friday and overcame subsequent complacency to win the conference matchup 68-63.

The Cavaliers used defense and turned it into great offense to begin the contest.

“I think the way we started was the most pivotal, because very rarely have we started off with that type of energy and that type of burst,” Cavs head coach Clint Wright said.

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The home team got some key offensive help from one of its sophomores who started at point guard. “I thought that Daquan Boyette had an immediate impact to the game,” Wright said.

Unfortunately, Boyette suffered a high ankle sprain in the second quarter.

The coach said some of the guys lost some drive and focus, and suddenly Lakeland’s lead had shrunk to four at halftime – 27-23.

“Nobody has ever won a game in the first quarter, the second quarter and even the third quarter,” Wright said. “I had some choice words to share during our halftime meeting.”

He told his team it was too good to continue playing in spurts.

The Cavaliers were able to close the game out, but made it hard on themselves by missing 25 free throws for the game. They reversed this trend in the waning moments.

“We made a few free throws down the stretch as Phoebus tried to extend the ball game,” Wright said. Senior Markese Wright hit his last four attempts to maintain Lakeland’s five to six point cushion.

On the night, Wright produced well above his usual averages, contributing 13 points, seven assists and five boards.

Sophomore Deonta Knight continued to be steady for the Cavs with 16 points and 10 rebounds, while senior Marche’ Everette added 15 points and eight boards.

Sophomore Qurante Budd followed up his 21-point performance on Tuesday with another strong night, though it did not reflect as much in his statistics.

“He had to do a lot of the other intangibles for us, handling the basketball, playing great defense and things of that nature,” Wright said. Budd finished with nine points and four rebounds.

After Friday’s win and Tuesday’s close game against Heritage High School, Wright sees the potential for his team to peak at the right time.

“I think we can give people something to talk about,” he said.

Lakeland (7-9, 1-3) hosts Nansemond River High School (14-2, 3-1) on Friday.