Archive for Thursday, February 16, 2006

Didde, Jackson provide boost off bench

February 16, 2006

The Lansing High boys basketball team lacked consistency in most areas during Tuesday night's 62-61 home loss to Bishop Ward.

Two Lions made the most of their opportunities throughout the game, though, LHS coach Don Allen said. Those Lions were sophomore forward Stephen Didde and junior forward Jeff Jackson.

Didde, who was called up to the varsity a few weeks ago, sparked the Lions with his energy and intensity during the first half when they used a 21-5 run to take a 10-point lead. At one point, Didde made a steal and then scored the ensuing basket that put the Lions ahead, 27-21.

It was the second time in three games Didde had provided a spark. He scored two points and grabbed four rebounds last week during Lansing's come-from-behind victory at Immaculata.

"I think he's starting to feel a little bit more comfortable," Allen said. "It's still a pretty big step (from junior varsity to varsity), but he's starting to feel more comfortable."

Jackson has embraced his extended minutes throughout the season, and Tuesday night was no different. The 6-foot-2 Jackson made three of four shots for six points, grabbed two rebounds and blocked four shots against Ward.

Just like Didde, Jackson's biggest impact came during the second-quarter run. He blocked two shots during that stretch and capped the run with a tip-in in traffic to put Lansing ahead, 31-21, with 68 seconds left before halftime.

"He came out and did a fantastic job for us in the first half," Allen said.

Lansing (8-9 overall, 6-5 Kaw Valley League) next play at 7:30 p.m. Friday against Turner at Johnsmeyer Gymnasium.

Turner won last year's contest, 58-53, in a game where Jeff Slater scored 18 points, Chris Wagner had 15 and Jackson scored eight.

"They're just going to be extremely quick and extremely athletic," Allen said.

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