Late Rally Falls Short For Nighthawks


THE NATOMAS BUZZ | @natomasbuzz

Despite a 16-2 run midway through the fourth quarter, the Natomas High School boys basketball team was unable to overcome a 22-point fourth quarter deficit, losing to Rio Linda 58-47 at home Thursday night.

Down 18-2 after the first quarter and committing almost double the amount of turnovers (20) to points (12) in the first and third quarter, the Nighthawks (0-3) were unable to match the size of Knights forward Langston Howard, scoring eight of his game-high 20 points with less than four minutes to play after Natomas cut a 48-26 margin to 49-42.

“We can’t get into that deficit,” Natomas junior Jamison Lyons said. “We have to keep fighting, if we do keep fighting as hard as we can to get back to it.”

Lyons finished with 10 points, including eight in the fourth quarter fueled by open shots, a full court press on defense and stronger rebounding that was lacking in the first 24 minutes of the game.

“We have to take care of the ball, make better passes and take good quality shots,” sophomore Jamey Morgan said. “We are getting better each and every day.”

Morgan helped the Nighthawks get within 11 at halftime with 11 of his 16 points in the second quarter, to go into intermission down 26-15 despite scoring just two points in the first eight minutes of the game.

But much like the first quarter, coming out of the locker room after intermission, the Nighthawks continued to make arrant passes and were unable to get good looks at the basket.

And after trailing by 22 points in the fourth, Lyons scored six straight points for Natomas, and along with leading scorer Marcellus McCrary (18 points), the duo scored 16 of the team’s 23 points in the final quarter.

“We can build off it as long as we bring our game up,” Morgan said. “We just need to play harder and play defense and the wins will come to us.”

Natomas still winless under new head coach Brian Hamilton head to Galt Tuesday night for a road game at Liberty Ranch. The next home will be against Brookside Christian on Jan. 8.

Morgan says that with the solid run in the fourth quarter, the Nighthawks can build off that short momentum and get into the win
column before league play starts in January, adding, “I think we can
put four good quarters in and get a “W.”

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