WEST CALDWELL, NJ — The James Caldwell boys basketball team is back on the warpath after 25 points from Hank Morgan led the team to a 59-53 victory over Mountain Lakes on Monday afternoon, ending a three-game losing streak.
“We just had a stretch [of games] where we weren’t shooting the ball well last week and it affects some of our other play,” said Caldwell head coach Mike Fess. “We’re trying to remove that from our effort.”
The Chiefs labored through a tough game against the previously 9-3 Lakers to hold on for the victory.
“Today we kind of put both elements together,” said Fess. “We shot the ball better and our effort was there.”
Caldwell’s key run started in the fourth quarter as the squad scored nine points to two for Mountain Lakes. Tyler Krisinski, Hank Morgan and Will Raslowski sent the team out to a key three-possession lead midway through the period.
“I just think the ball just landed in our guys hands,” said Fess. “If Hank Morgan isn’t scoring, the other guys need to step up and make plays. Some other guys made plays today—like Tyler Krisinski and Krisinski hit some threes—and it makes us more difficult to guard.”
The Lakers were pesky, however, hanging around to make the last minute interesting. Mountain Lakes cut the lead to two points in the waning minutes before Morgan closed out the game at the line, ultimately producing 25 points on the evening for his team.
“We hung in there,” said Fess. “We said to forget all the mistakes that happened and we’ll start from there. We played a little smarter and defensively had a big stop.”
Caldwell’s victory improves the squad to 11-3 on the season as the Chiefs look to get back on a strong run once again. The Chiefs will now take on Golda Och Academy, who they have already beaten earlier this year.
“[Winning] certainly helps our confidence after the last three games,” said Fess. “We’ll feel a lot better, because [Mountain Lakes] is a pretty good team at 9-3. We’re just going to hope to get back to where we were prior to last week and believe in ourselves as a team.”