Inside Feb. 28-March 5 issue
By Derek Aaron, Times Journal Sports Editor
The Russell County Mighty Lakers beat Cumberland County, 54-43, to move to the 16th district title game on Friday against Metcalfe County.
“That first game in the district tournament is always the toughest,” said Head Coach Willie Feldhaus. “You try and tell your kids its just like any other game but its really not.”
Feldhaus said his team had to come out and play aggressive against the Panthers, and they did so. He also said the home crowd was an advantage and that his team needed that same kind of support on Friday night in the title game.
Feldhaus said the first two times that his team played the Hornets this season they have been down by 20 at the end of the first quarter.
“That’s pretty much game over against us because we’re not a pressing-typ team to where we can get back into it,” he said.
“We’ve got to, somehow, neutralize them early in the ballgame and give ourselves a chance going into the second quarter of the ballgame,” Feldhaus said.
Feldhaus lauded the play senior Timmy Coffey, who went 6-10 from the field for 16 points while also grabbing a team-high 10 rebounds.
“I told him before the game that he had to be a man out there for us (against Cumberland),” he said. “And he certainly was.”
Feldhaus complimented his sophomores for their big play against Cumberland, with the Justice brothers and Bryson McFall leading the way.
Bryon Ellis also scored double-figures with 12 points and three rebounds. Both Robbie Bell and Kyle Burchett had three points apiece for the Lakers.
Lucas Justice had eight points and six rebounds while brother Adam had four points and three rebounds.
McFall had eight points and three assists and made several tough shots down the stretch.
Leading the way for Cumberland County was Cameron Stalcup with 15 points while teammate Cody Pruitt had 11 points.
Good luck to the Lakers in the 16th district championship game on Friday night. Game time is 7 p.m.