Before the start of Faith Christian Academy’s game against Wilson Christian Academy, Faith Christian head coach Jeff Stocks received the Bob LaTour Excellence in Coaching Award for 35 years of coaching.
“It was a surprise,” said Stocks. “I’ve been doing this a long time, and I still love what I do. This is a good place to work, and the lord has been good to me that’s for sure.”
As the crowd rose to their feet, Stocks stood stunned and speechless. The Conquerors, not surprisingly, needed a few minutes to find their rhythm after the joyous pre-game festivities.
However, Wilson Christian Academy spoiled the Conquerors’ party, and claimed a 59-56 win over the Conquerors on Wednesday night.
“They beat us by 26 last time at their place, so I’m proud of how we played,” said Stocks. “We played hard just a couple turnovers toward the end.
“I’m never happy for a loss, but I’m happy with how much we’ve improved over the past few weeks.”
The teams battled through a back-and-forth first quarter before Wilson Christian stole the momentum and took a 13-9 lead.
Wilson Christian outscored Faith Christian 19-14 in the second quarter and had a 32-23 halftime lead.
Undeterred, the Conquerors began to come back on the shoulders of Luke Miller, Justin Ashford, Blaise Conlon, and Cal Reese. Faith Christian began to break down the Wilson Christian’s defense, and the foursome combined to score 14 points, which helped the Conquerors pull within four points.
“We were nervous at the start, but settled down,” said Stocks. “We got our big guys involved, once we did that it helped us a little bit.”
The Conquerors came out hot in the fourth quarter, Miller made the score 52-51 with three minutes to play, but Wilson Christian guard Brice Murray sank a free throw with less than a minute left to play that gave Wilson Chrisitan a 57-54 advantage.
Harrison Parker sealed the game with a free throw 40 seconds later.
Reese finished the game with 10 points, while Cooper Voeller added four points.
“Nobody helps us more than my two seniors, they give it all they’ve got,” said Stocks. “They’re good leaders, which I’ll miss next year, but I’ve got some young guys coming up, and I’m looking forward to the future.”
Faith Christian finished the season 5-14 overall.