Updated Sat, Feb 1, 2014 11:26 am
The week got off to a heartbreaking start for the Federal Hocking boys team (2-4, 1-3) when the Lancers fell to conference foe Belpre 58-53 in double overtime on Dec. 17.
Fed Hock lost more than the game on Tuesday, as starting point guard Cliff Bonner broke his hand by landing on it after a fast break layup.
“I kept on playing,” said Bonner. “I was just thinking it was a sprain, so I got it taped up and continued playing. I think it was the adrenaline that kept me going throughout the game.”
Bonner will be out for 2-4 weeks with a fractured hand, but he still believes he can be a leader for the team.
“I’m just going to try to keep them motivated,” said Bonner. “But it is hard to do that when you aren’t out there battling with them.”
The Lancers then began a five-game road stretch with a trip to Waterford. Assistant coach Jeremy Tolson cited the game against the first-place Wildcats as a perfect cure for the team’s double overtime hangover.
“This game was huge,” said Tolson. “We had to come out and hustle and execute on offense.”
The underdog Lancers kept up with Waterford in a scrappy affair, keeping things tied at 28 apiece going into the half.
Waterford’s defense gave Fed Hock’s offense headaches in the second stanza. Both teams traded buckets briefly in the third quarter, but Fed Hock only mustered up 13 second half points, leading to a 51-41 Waterford win.
Fortunately for the Lancers, the next stop on the road stretch lead them to a struggling River High School where the Lancers came away with a 51-33 victory on Dec. 21.
With the 1-2 week, senior Pete Crum said that his team needs to clean up its game.
“We need to play hard and minimize our mistakes,” said Crum. “We have been making stupid mistakes and turning the ball over. If we can stop our turnovers, we can win.”
“We need to start finishing games,” said Bonner. “We have been in every game this year, but we seem to let them slip away.”
Six games into the season, the Lancers are still seeking a clearly defined leader.
“We are waiting for someone to step up and lead this team during the difficult parts of games,” said Tolson.
Bonner said that the team is continuing to develop chemistry and defined roles.
“We’re just trying to play together as a team,” said Bonner. “We all know our roles. We have four seniors and a junior who all have a lot of experience, but we also have some underclassmen with large roles. We just want to get back to playing as a team more.”
The Lancers are finished until after Christmas, as they travel to Alexander on Dec. 27.