Coach took Panthers to new heights

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Lakeside players came up to Moe McCormack after their season had ended in a state playoff loss at Statesboro and told their coach something few Lakeside teams have been capable of boasting.

Moe McCormack: Lakeside girls basketball coach led the Panthers to their first state playoffs in the 22-year history of the school.  Jim Blaylock/Staff
Jim Blaylock/Staff
Moe McCormack: Lakeside girls basketball coach led the Panthers to their first state playoffs in the 22-year history of the school.

"We could have played with them ... we want to keep this going," McCormack remembered them saying.

Lakeside's best season in school history ended with that loss to one of the best teams in the state.

For guiding the Panthers to their first playoff bid in the school's 22-year history, McCormack is The Augusta Chronicle Girls Georgia Coach of the Year.

The Panthers, who went 18-11, defeated Josey for the third time in the Region 3-AAAA Tournament to clinch the bid. In their next game, star player Carolyn Hennecken tore her ACL and was lost for the playoffs, yet the team still played a competitive game at Region 2-AAAA champion Statesboro.

"They wanted to keep playing -- they weren't tired or ready to give up," said McCormack, who has coached at the school for five seasons. "It's good that they feel that way. They're catching on.

"They all felt confident we could start trying to compete with the big boys."

McCormack said this for two reasons: her team was smart enough to understand the things they needed to execute against faster, quicker teams and the group has gotten comfortable enough with McCormack to pick up on the things she wanted them to absorb.

In addition to a three-game sweep of Josey, Lakeside knocked off region runner-up Butler, started the year 6-0 and went 7-1 against the rest of Columbia County.

"The girls are starting to understand my style, my intensity," said McCormack, a 1981 Aquinas graduate and former Augusta College player. "They're learning to not take things personal instead to try and learn the things we go over. Sometimes, when girls have a female coach they tend to take things more personal.

"I think they realized I am wanting them to get better. ... This group gets it."

Comments (6) Add comment
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slippery 25
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slippery 25 04/10/10 - 08:07 am
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Great season!

Great season!

Riverman1
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Riverman1 04/10/10 - 08:25 am
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Go Lakeside. This school

Go Lakeside. This school excells in EVERYTHING! Course I'm predjudiced. Go all CSRA schools.

backagain
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backagain 04/10/10 - 04:22 pm
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Compared to Butler high,you
Unpublished

Compared to Butler high,you are Predjudiced,because we all know Keisha Stewart should have received this award,Butler have went to the playoffs three years straight.They finally advanced past the 1st round,this is an obvious mistake,or is it obvious.Lakeside only beat them when 4 players was suspended.I disagree with this selection.

Ldog
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Ldog 04/11/10 - 12:11 pm
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"Backagain", your comment

"Backagain", your comment would be great if it were true. There was only 1 starter who was suspended. Educate yourself (along with your grammar) before making posts bashing other coaches more deserving than Butler's. Maybe Butler's team will do better next year if they can acquire a team that doesn't get busted for shoplifting. The only thing "we all know" is that your facts are not straight and you have bad grammar. BHS grad maybe? I disagree with your opinion.

BIGTIMER
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BIGTIMER 04/11/10 - 06:43 pm
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Congratulations Coach

Congratulations Coach McCormack! You've done a great job with your program and deserve the title...Coach of the Year. Wishing you continued success.

celtic
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celtic 04/12/10 - 11:56 am
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Well deserved!!! She puts in

Well deserved!!! She puts in tons of time and absolutely deserved this recognition! Boy, has this team come a long ways!!! I agree with Riverman, this school succeeds in EVERYTHING!! You should check out their show choir!!!!

cottoncandy16
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cottoncandy16 04/12/10 - 11:26 pm
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LDOG: You should also educate

LDOG: You should also educate yourself before you start typing also, the players were not suspended for shoplifting they were suspended for leaving class early. unless you know your facts you should not be speaking. Get your FACTS correct!

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