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Knights Off to Another Fast Start

Knights Off to Another Fast Start

The Cave Spring Knights seem to have all the pieces in place for yet another state title run in 2010. The Knights return 7 players from last year’s championship team, including all five starters. Head Coach Billy Hicks had only one concern for his veteran squad: could they stay hungry?

So far, the answer is a resounding “yes.” The Knights have steamrolled their opponents en route to a 7-1 record going into district play, perhaps serving notice that March’s title run hasn’t gone to their heads.

“It was our biggest concern, by far – could we keep the boys focused?” Hicks said. “But we have a bunch of seniors, and guys who have a ton of experience, and they’ve continued to compete and push each other.”

Of the team’s seven wins, five have been by double-digits. And the Knights haven’t exactly been beating up on creampuffs. Cave Spring won the Holiday Hoopla held at the Salem Civic Center last week, handing Roanoke Catholic (6-1) their only loss of the season in the process. Two weeks earlier, the Knights tagged Northside (6-1) with their only loss of the season to date, an impressive 73-51 home victory.

“We want to play a competitive non-district schedule,” Hicks said.

Scoring has come relatively easy for the Knights, who are currently averaging 71.5 points per game. Center Josh Henderson leads the team with nearly 20 points per game, while forward Clay Lacy isn’t far behind, pouring in nearly 19 a game. If there is an area in need of improvement, Hicks points to the Knight’s defense, describing it as “lackadaisical at times.”

“But we were  really good on defense last year, and I think we’ll be tough on defense again this year,” he added.

Cave Spring began River Ridge District play Tuesday night at Pulaski – a venue in which none of the seniors on the roster had ever won. The Knights will then take on Salem at home on Thursday night.

Is a second consecutive state title in the Knights’ future? Hicks isn’t looking that far ahead.

“I’m kind of a live in the present kind of guy,” he said. “We all know that last year is over, that this is a different season, a new season. But the one thing that will help us is our experience. We have a lot of guys who have played in a bunch of big games in front of big crowds.”

By Matt Reeve
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