By Mike Deak
DENVER – It’s NBA All-Star weekend and the stars are ready to shine on basketball’s showcase stage. On a super smaller scale, Carson Rich did his best to mimic his all-star skills in his team’s biggest moment, going all Damian Lilliard on LCA.
Rich dropped 40 points Saturday night in a 69-44 Southwood win over Lakeland Christian in the North Miami Boys Basketball final. For the second time this week, Rich hit the 40-point mark after matching the feat Tuesday against Southern Wells. Rich, who averages 22 points per game this season, had 17 points by the half against LCA, 11 of those in the second quarter.
Dawson Filip added 13 points for the Knights, which repeated as sectional champs and earned their sixth sectional trophy overall. Southwood (15-10) will take on Seton Catholic (9-9) at next week’s Frankfort Regional.
For the Cougars, Seth Martin finished with 19 points to lead the team. Landon Gause had 13 points and Hunter Rice added six points.
Lakeland Christian, in just its ninth season as an IHSAA member school, has played in back-to-back sectional championships, but were knocked out by Southwood in both of those contests.
Led by Jake Ritchie in his first year as head coach, the Cougars finished 11-11 overall and finished at .500 or better for just the second time. The 2017-18 team finished 13-12.