BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
DONNELLSON – Central Lee’s boys basketball team is still looking for their first win of the season and couldn’t find it on the first game of the new year.
WACO came into town and pushed the Hawks around in the second half for a 69-28 Southeast Iowa Superconference win Tuesday night at Central Lee High School.
“It’s a broken record at this point. Careless turnovers and our inability to break pressure at key points in the game cost us big time early in the second half of this game,” Head Coach Kritter Hayes said.
“We could look for excuses but we won’t do it. We need to have a tougher mindset, period.”
Hayes said the Hawks are short on experience and depth causing them to not be able to compete at critical times of games.
“All of these things lead to our team having to constantly fight from behind. We can do better at execution and focus on things we can control – our execution on the offensive end and our hustle and intensity,” he said.
“We were only down 12 at half and felt good about our chances. I told our guys we had them against the ropes and that the first three minutes of the 3rd were going to be vital. We didn’t execute right out of the gate and turned it over four or five consecutive times which allowed WACO to extend a lead that we couldn’t overcome.”
Alex Sandoval led the Hawks with 13 points including going 3-of-4 from the 3-point arch. Corbin Pohren and Bryce Finney each had six points.
Braydon Wyrick, a freshman who’s leading the Hawks in scoring with 82 points on the year, was held to just one point on a free throw. Aiden Ross and Chase Johnson each had a point to round out the Hawks’ scoring.
Hayes said Sandoval had his best shooting night of the season and Pohren did a good job of handling the ball against WACO’s press as bright spots in the game. He said Finney also played an aggressive game. He pulled down five rebounds to lead Central Lee.
WACO had 12 players get in on the scoring action.
The Hawks travel to Cardinal (6-4) on Friday night.