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Emotions key to Lincoln boys hoops team’s success

Published January 23, 2013

» click to enlarge «
The Warren Lincoln boys basketball team was averaging 61.4 points per game at press time — good for seventh in the 36-team MAC. Pictured is Abes senior guard Brandon Hicks, right, during a Jan. 15 matchup at Mount Clemens. Hicks leads Lincoln with 21.0 points and 5.0 assists per game.

WARREN — Warren Lincoln senior center Dayshawn Hampton said knowing when to wear your heart on your sleeve could mean the different between a good season and a bad season for the Abes.

“We’re a really emotional team and that comes out at the wrong times sometimes, because if we get down, we get down on ourselves and start blaming each other for mistakes,” said Hampton, who averaged 15.75 rebounds over a four-game stretch this season.

“We have to learn to communicate in a better way.”

Lincoln coach Jeff McGavin said he discussed that with his team during a Jan. 16 practice. He said the Abes need to do a better job of having each other’s backs during games. He said he understands showing the slightest bit of dissention can serve as an opening for the opposition.

“They’re an emotional group. That’s a part of who we are as a team, and there are good and bad aspects of that,” said McGavin, whose team had a record of 5-3, 1-1 Macomb Area Conference Gold Division at press time.

“The seniors are doing a good job of trying to fix that, though, and it’s starting to show.”

The team features seven seniors, including Hampton and guard Brandon Hicks; Hicks leads Lincoln with 21.0 points and five assists per game.

The Abes start five seniors: Hampton, Hicks, forward Davon Hampton, guard Brad Freeman and guard Andi Sadiq. At press time, Lincoln had outscored opponents 61.4-58.6 per game. Those 61.4 points per game are good for seventh in the 36-team MAC.

“We’ve got good players. If we keep working hard and come together as a team, we’ll do all right,” Hicks said.

Fourth-quarter execution will be key for Lincoln, too, according to McGavin. He said the Abes must do a better job of making smart decisions late in games, if it wants to compete in the MAC Gold with teams such as New Haven and three-time defending league champ Mount Clemens.

“We can definitely get everything right. I know we’ll have everything right by the time the playoffs start (Michigan High School Athletic Association playoff games tip off March 4),” Dayshawn Hampton said. “If that happens, we’ll be dangerous.”

Lincoln’s next game is a matchup with New Haven, set for 7 p.m. Jan 25 at New Haven.

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