Green Wave slowly progressing after football playoffs

Published 12:55 am Sunday, December 26, 2010

NATCHEZ — The Cathedral boy’s basketball team is still trying to work out the kinks as the schedule slows down during the holidays.

The Green Wave are currently 6-5 on the season, and head coach Peter Arnold said his team is still trying to put it all together before regional play begins in January.

“We got started late with the football team going deep into the playoffs, so that put us behind,” Arnold said.

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“We’ve been trying to get those guys up to speed, then exams hit, and we didn’t play for that week. Now Christmas is here, and we’re starting to progress.”

Arnold said he’s looking for his team to play a full 32 minutes of basketball, but his team isn’t quite at that point just yet.

“We’re getting closer,” he said. “We’re just trying to practice and scrimmage over the break, and hopefully at least not lose ground.”

After the holiday break is over, Arnold said his team would need to be ready for a very tough regional schedule.

“Those games count the most,” he said. “Hopefully we’ll be hitting our stride in January in order to get a good seeding in the (regional) tournament. Regardless of records, that’s what it comes down to in order to get into the playoffs.”

Cathedral’s conference schedule includes a West Lincoln team that is currently 14-0, a 10-4 Bogue Chitto team and a tough opponent in Sebastopol, Arnold said.

“West Lincoln is without a doubt the class of our district, and it will be us and the two others fighting to see who can compete with them,” Arnold said.

And if there’s a good time to finally hit that full 32-minute threshold, the conference schedule is that time, Arnold said.

“It’s just about being ready to play,” he said. “You have to come out strong at the beginning, and you have to stay focused.

“We have spurts where we do well, then three or four minutes where we’re in a lull and lose our focus and intensity. We’re looking for full intensity on defense throughout the whole game.”

But even Arnold admits that such a performance is rare to see.

“That’s what everyone looks for at all levels,” Arnold said. “That’s what you have to strive for. No matter if you’re up by 10 or down by 10, you have to maintain your intensity the whole time.

“If you get any kind of lead where the kids feel comfortable, that’s when they tend to lose focus and relax. But the coaches are never comfortable.”

Cathedral will play again Jan. 3 against Trinity.