Hurricanes rough up Lakeland
Published 8:27 pm Saturday, February 8, 2014
Lakeland High School’s game on Friday night went nothing like its first meeting with Heritage High School on Jan. 14, but the end result was the same — a Cavaliers loss.
The Cavs led throughout their first contest, which was at Heritage, but lost by two in the end. On Friday, the visiting Hurricanes raced to an early lead and never looked back on their way to an 82-54 win.
Clint Wright, Lakeland’s head coach, said his team started sluggishly and is back to playing in spurts. He figures recent success may have helped induce some complacency.
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“Even though we beat Nansemond (River High School), I think it might have taken something away from us, and we’re trying to rekindle that now,” he said.
Wright did not want to shortchange Heritage for what it did, however.
“They did a great job of making sure that we were in a sluggish start,” he said.
Wright cited another factor in Friday’s game: “I don’t think we surprised Heritage like we did the last time.”
Lakeland’s defensive positioning during its opponent’s half-court offensive situations is what helped it against Nansemond River, and it was still decent on Friday, but Heritage got its points another way.
“They got so many fast break points, which means that they got a lot of rebounds also,” Wright said.
The coach said his team needs to improve its mental approach, as Tuesday’s game at Denbigh High School was another off night for the Cavs. The Patriots won 55-43, despite Lakeland sophomore Deonta Knight’s 21 points and nine rebounds.
The Cavaliers, like all teams in the conference, still have a chance to advance through the post-season if they perform well in the upcoming conference tournament.
Before then, Lakeland (8-10, 2-4) begins its final week of the regular season with a rematch against Denbigh on Monday, which will be senior night for the Cavs.