WINDERMERE — Despite an impressive shooting performance from the Faith Christian Lions, the seniors on the Windermere Prep boys basketball team would not be denied a victory on their Senior Night, leading the Lakers to a 77-69 victory on Tuesday.
Four of the five Windermere Prep seniors combined for 47 of the Lakers’ 77 points (guard Matt Hein sat out after suffering an ankle injury early in the contest), led by 19 points from Michael Stones and 16 points from Isaiah Curry.
Still, Windermere Prep (17-8) trailed by double-digits early and had a hard time pulling away from a Faith Christian (14-5) squad that shot very well from beyond the arc.
“(Faith Christian) came ready — they jumped on us … they shot the ball well from start to finish,” Lakers coach Ben Wilson said. “I think our bad play from Friday (in a district loss to The First Academy) carried over — (we were) still having a pity party.”
After the slow start, Windermere Prep got back on track in the second quarter and went into the half leading 33-29.
Stones and Curry were important down the stretch for the Lakers, as were seniors Xeo Golding (nine points) and Nate Steineck (four points).
“The seniors were big,” Wilson said. “All five guys really contributed and made plays down the stretch.”
Xion Golding had 15 points and Parker Davis added nine points for the Lakers, who will now prepare for the district tournament next week at The First Academy — and a likely third go-around with the Royals, who have beaten Windermere Prep in the first two meetings this season.
“We know what lies ahead in the district (tournament) with TFA,” Wilson said, adding that his team must remedy the slow starts it has made a habit of in most of its games this season.
“In the second half, all of a sudden, we’re spirited and we’re energetic,” he said. “We come out flat almost every game and against a good team like TFA, if you get down early, it’s tough to come back on them.”