Boys basketball: Lobos starting strong
It's safe to say Langham Creek had a pretty good opening week.
The Lobos, who squeezed into the playoffs and went four rounds deep last season, opened numerous eyes with victories over top 20-ranked Seven Lakes and Klein Forest last week, and coach Charles Ament saw it as a strong statement by his new squad.
"We're definitely not the same team as last year, and we don't have one guy who will lead the city in scoring like we had in Mackey McKnight (now a freshman starter at Lehigh)," Ament said. "But what we do have is a team with terrific chemistry and work ethic, and one with no egos. It's a dynamic core of characteristics, and we're really excited about this group.
"The kids created some daily standards to strive for and they're proud to be this L.C. team."
Langham Creek opened the season with a 59-47 victory over Seven Lakes, No. 13 in the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Class 5A preseason state rankings, and followed up three days later with a 57-45 triumph against Klein Forest, 5A No. 20, according to the TABC.
Senior wing John Johnson led with 18 points, senior point guard Reggie Simmons had 14 and 6-5 junior guard Quinn Taylor 10 against Seven Lakes, and in the Klein Forest win, junior reserve Gilbert Carter, a transfer from Stratford, tallied 17 points, with Johnson adding 16 and Simmons 12.
Senior guard Austin Cheney and junior point guard Ryan Patrick join Johnson, Taylor and Simmons in most starting lineups, but there's plenty of minutes for 6-7 junior post Danny Newsome, 6-4 senior post Bryan Doolittle, junior guard Fuzz Radjenovich, senior guard Ray Washington and sophomore post Eric Johnson.
The glittering start came without the services of senior guard Dalton Smith and sophomore guard Caleb Hobbs, who are recovering from injuries.
"We have enough height to compete with the bigger teams, and we can also go small when needed," Ament said.
"This team has good flexibility to match up with different opponents and styles, and we'll need to do just that in our district."
The TABC picks (in order) Cy Falls, Cy Lakes, Cy-Fair and Langham Creek to claim 17-5A's four playoff berths over (in no particular order) Cy Woods, Cy Creek, Jersey Village, Cy Ranch, Cy Springs and Cy Ridge.
"It's going to be really competitive," Ament said. "A lot of times you might see one team jump out and take the district championship, but then there's not a lot of difference between two through seven.
"Cy Lakes finished one game out of a four-way tie for second place last season, and they have everyone back, and really there's seven or eight teams that are going to be right there for the four (playoff) berths.
"There are no nights off in our district, and when the race is on, most of the 17-5A coaches don't sleep that much."
Langham Creek hosts Dobie at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 30, and competes in the Katy ISD Tournament from Dec. 2-4.
The Lobos' district opener is on Jan. 4, 2011 at Cy Woods.
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