Boyd High School boys coach Chris Sullens knows the ebbs and flows of a young team far too well. His Bronco team has already had its ups and downs this season.
After bouncing back from an opening night loss to win its next two games, Boyd fell to the Daniel 1 Academy Lions 57-53 Tuesday night at J.K. Stanley Gymnasium.
Coach Sullens, who thought after two victories his team void of seniors was starting to put it all together, saw Tuesday that there is still plenty of work to be done.
First and foremost, coach Sullens is looking for a floor general when the game is on the line.
“It’s games like Tuesday night’s contest where our basketball team needs a leader or leaders on the floor,” said Sullens. “We are still searching for that guy to make sure we get done what we want to get done when the game is tight and we need a good possession.
“I don’t fault our effort, but our execution didn’t cut it.”
Boyd (2-2) led for most of the first half and took a slim 24-21 lead into halftime, but the visiting Lions outscored the Broncos 18-7 in the third quarter to lead by eight entering the final period.
The Broncos fought back behind junior guards Christian Barrett and Jake Driver, but the comeback fell four points short.
Barrett was the driving force behind the Broncos taking an early lead. Equally adept to fire from deep or get to the rim, Barrett scored 11 of his team-high 18 points in the first half to lead the Broncos.
Barrett had three solid drives to the rim where he knifed through the entire Lion defense, then he added a big 3-pointer from the right corner for good measure.
Colin Stubblefield sank two 3-pointers in the first half as Boyd looked poised to run its winning streak to three games.
Daniel 1 Academy, which plays in the Middle Tennessee Athletic Conference with Boyd, stormed back to take the lead as the Bronco offense fell flat in the third quarter.
Boyd couldn’t buy a basket around the rim, something coach Sullens thought was a problem the entire game.
“When you shoot 25 percent around the basket and turn the ball over with unforced errors, that becomes a recipe for a loss,” said Sullens. “We missed shot after shot from guys that are capable of putting the ball in the basket.”
Driver and Barrett each heated up the final period as Boyd put 22 points on the board, but Daniel 1 Academy hit enough free throws down the stretch to keep the charging Broncos at bay.
Driver, who sank two 3-pointers in the final period, finished with a season-high 13 points. Stubblefield chipped in 11 points.
Boyd will look to get back to its winning ways tomorrow night when the team travels to play Franklin Christian Academy.
Action is set to start at 7:30 p.m.