ES lacks energy in loss to Pea Ridge

Friday, December 8, 2017

The Eureka Springs Highlanders played with a lack of energy and emotion against Pea Ridge in Saturday's third-place game of the Golden Arrow Classic at Lavaca. That cost the Highlanders, as they went on to lose 42-28.

"Right before the game started I was sitting on the bench and I could see that my guys had zero energy," Eureka Springs coach Brian Rambo said. "They were laughing and just going through the warmups. I was talking to Trent Loyd (Pea Ridge basketball coach) and I asked him, 'have you ever gotten on to your team during warmups?' So I had to stand up during warmups and challenge them to have energy. We just played like that. Defensively, we did an OK job, but offensively we didn't have any energy. No enthusiasm. No spirit, were just really flat. When you play a team that played in last year’s state championship game, that can't happen."

Pea Ridge led 8-7 at the end of the first quarter, but the Highlanders were unable to score a point in the second quarter and the Blackhawks led 16-7 at halftime. Rambo said this lack of energy is something he has seen throughout the year and it's something that needs to be addressed.

"I had to go to them earlier in the year and tell them I have done this a long time," Rambo said. "I can't be the guy in practice and the guy in the game coaching, subbing, calling timeouts and being the energy giver, too. Those are the things that self-motivated guys who are leaders have to do. We don't have that right now. We have a bunch of guys who like to make excuses and instead of getting down and battling, they get flat and lackadaisical. Our seniors have to be the ones who step up and set the tone. I can't give it to them. They have to get it on their own."

Coming out of halftime, Slade Clark made a three-pointer to trim the lead to six. Rambo said the Highlanders never made a run to get any closer. Carter Drennon finished the game with 10 points and Garrett Cross scored nine. Berryville will travel to St. Paul on Tuesday and host Omaha on Friday.

"I don't think we need more gym time, we just have to find some grit and learn to play through some adversity," Rambo said. "It's not about what we are doing wrong, it's about making sure we are bringing it every possession and we aren't right now."

Thursday's home game with Mount Judea has been canceled.

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