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Young Lions finding district a challenge

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The extremely young Lockhart Lions dropped two more district gaes last week, falling at Cedar Park, 63-42, and at home to Leander Rouse, 66-30.

Cedar Park also won the Junior Varsity game, 73-30, and the Freshman tilt, 63-42.

The losses dropped Lockhart to 11-18 overall and 0-9 in district play.

Lockhart had opportunities throughout our game and just could not capitalize on the offensive end.

LHS Head Coach Collin Hart said his Lions have made improvements over the season on being able to play with the type of physicality needed, and it was shown against Cedar Park.

“They made everything hard for Cedar Park on the offensive end,” Hart said. “I have been pleased with how we are responding in certain situations. I was impressed with how we handled their full-court pressure. We ended up with only 10 turnovers. We have been trying to limit our turnovers and we are starting to be more comfortable breaking presses.

“I can honestly say our guys are going to continue to show up and get to work. We are going to use these types of games as learning experiences. We are a very young team with a ton of room for growth and our guys know that.”

Lockhart was paced by freshman Johnny Ford with 17 points, followed by senior Cristian Hernandez with 9, sophomore Jay Villalobos 6, and junior Jordan Ortiz 5.

Against 6th-ranked Leander Rouse, Hart said his opponent played like the ranked team it is.

“They did a very good job of applying pressure and turning us over in the first half,” Hart said. “They like to get out and run, so any turnovers quickly turned into quick transition points. We had plenty of opportunities on the offensive side of the ball. They liked to blitz on dribble handoffs and ball screens, so we prepared for that and did a great job of executing and finding the right guy in those situations. We just didn’t finish around the basket, and with teams like Rouse you need all of those finishes.

“We challenged our guys to come out with a sense of urgency on the defensive side of things. The last time we played, they outscored us 30-2 in the third quarter alone. We held them to 25 points in the second half. Which showed how our guys are taking what we talked about at half and going out and executing to the best of their ability. We were very impressed with the response we had, and it is something we are going to keep building off.”

Senior Cristian Hernandez, sophomore DJ Anthony, and junior Roman Moreno had 6 points each to lead the Lions, while freshman Johnny Ford added 5.

“I was very proud of how we battled throughout the game,” Hart said. “We are becoming a more physical basketball team and competing on both the defensive side of things and offense. We are playing better basketball at this point in the season and are continuing to improve daily. Our guys are going to show up and continue to get better because that is all we know.” Lockhart visited Liberty Hill on Tuesday and will return to the Lions Den on Friday against Kyle Lehman. The varsity will tip-off at 7 p.m.

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