MATTOON — Lake Land men’s basketball coach Brandon Colvin hasn’t been happy with the way the team has practiced lately.
It showed in a key game against Shawnee Community College on Wednesday.
Lake Land didn’t execute in key moments on either end of the court, especially on the offensive end. Even though the Lakers shot 46.3 percent against Shawnee, they turned the ball over 19 times.
The inability to execute at key times allowed Shawnee to get a bit of a cushion late in the second half, and the Saints went on to win 88-82, handing the Lakers their first loss in Great Rivers Athletic Conference play.
“When you don’t go hard in practice, it happens in games,” Colvin said. “When do go against the 2-3 (zone) in practice and don’t go hard against it, you don’t go hard in a game, you don’t score. We are going to learn one day or another as a team that what you do in practice carries over. Right now, that’s what we look like in practice.”
The loss snapped a five-game winning streak and it was only the third loss of the season for Lake Land, which is 11-3. The Lakers were the only undefeated team left in the GRAC, but are now 5-1. Shawnee improved to 9-5 on the season and 4-2 in the GRAC.
It wasn’t just on offense where Lake Land didn’t execute. Shawnee shot 47.7 percent in the game, and the Saints grabbed 14 offensive rebounds. Anytime Lake Land took the lead in the second half, Shawnee would respond with a run to get it back.
“It’s just a matter of being able to play 40 minutes,” Colvin said. “Like I told the guys, we are very good at spurts, but we don’t play a full 40 minutes. We get 5, 10 minutes and then we let off. We’ve got to figure it out because once we do put 40 minutes together, we will see how good we are actually are.”
Now Lake Land has to bounce back as the Lakers face ranked John A. Logan team on Saturday. John A. Logan only had one loss coming into Wednesday’s action in GRAC play.
“This team is very capable (of bouncing back) and capable of doing a lot of very big things,” Colvin said. “It’s just a matter of us getting out of our own way.”
Lake Land started with a 10-4 lead and was up 20-14 when Shawnee cut the Lake Land lead to one point. Lake Land responded with a 12-4 run and Josh Jefferson hit two 3-pointers as the Lakers went back up 32-23.
But Shawnee came back with a 7-0 run to make it a two-point game again and Shawnee later tied the game at 34. Shawnee took its first lead at 37-36 on a 3-pointer by Fermin Jeff.
Josh Jefferson gave Lake Land the lead back after following his own miss on a 3-pointer, which he turned into a layup. Lake Land got a defensive rebound and Dazon Farris started a fast break and scored on a layup for a 40-37 lead.
Lake Land didn’t score in the final 2 minutes of the first half, though, and Shawnee went on a 6-0 run to go into halftime with a 43-40 lead.
Lake Land had nine turnovers in the first half and gave up nine offensive rebounds.
Shawnee went up 51-44 when Lake Land started to cut into the lead. Josh Robinson started a run for Lake Land with a floater and later his Jumper tied the game at 53. Kevonte Williams hit a 3-pointer to give Lake Land a 56-53 lead with 11:50 remaining.
Shawnee came back with a 3-pointer by Sayveon McEwan and a dunk by Rob Howard to go back up 58-56.
The two teams traded buckets and Williams tied the game at 60 with a layup and then hit a 3-pointer to put Lake Land up 63-60 with 8:55 remaining.
But Shawnee went on a 7-0 run, which included a 3-pointer by Sayveon McEwan, to give the Saints a 67-63 lead.
Dazon Farris hit a 3-pointer and Amel Kuljohovic made a jumper as Lake Land went back up 68-67 with about 5 minutes left.
Then Lake Land’s offense went cold for about 3 minutes. Shomari Tillet grabbed an offensive rebound and scored to put Shawnee back up 68-67 and the Saints went on a 10-0 run. Jeff hit a 3-pointer at the end of the run to give the Saints their biggest lead of the game at the time at 77-68 with 2:57 left in the game.
Shawnee went on to win 88-82.