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Lakewood lets chances slip away with season

CLASS 4A: Missed shots, turnovers doom Spartans in 42-34 loss to Naples Barron Collier.

By JOHN C. COTEY, Times Staff Writer

© St. Petersburg Times, published February 21, 2003

NAPLES -- Lakewood had plenty of opportunities to capture Thursday night's quarterfinal. What they didn't have was the shooting touch to do so.

The Spartans hung around all game but never could make the shots when it counted most in falling to Naples Barron Collier 42-34 at the Cougar Den.

"It was just the fact that we were missing shots," Lakewood coach Ed Jackson said. "We got good looks but nothing was falling."

Barron Collier, which also ended Lakewood's season last year, opened its biggest lead 38-28 midway through the fourth quarter. But the Spartans (18-9) got back-to-back baskets from Jainabah Phillips to make it 38-32. They then had three possessions to trim the lead even further but either misfired or turned the ball over.

Jackson said it was frustrating to watch his team get so many more shots than Barron Collier but make so few. He said at one point, he counted eight shots for his team while the Cougars had none over three possessions.

"We did everything we were looking to do, got the shots we were looking for," Jackson said. "It got frustrating, because at this level you have to be able to finish plays, and we just didn't. We missed two or three shots on a possession and they would come down and get it back."

Barron Collier (20-6) made 4 of 5 free throws in the final minute.

If it wasn't free throws, it was the shooting of Cougars guard Julie Sell that stymied the Spartans.

After the Cougars opened an 11-6 lead toward the end of the first quarter, the Spartans came back to tie with five straight points. But Sell drained a 3-pointer from the corner to get her team going again on the way to a 23-16 halftime lead.

In the third quarter, Lakewood made another charge, cutting into a 10-point lead and making it 26-23 on Courtney Jacobs' layup. Again, however, Sell proved deadly from long range by knocking down a 3-pointer.

Phillips and Crystal Barriner both had 12 points to lead the Spartans.

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