The Hawthorne Hornets returned to Lakeland for the Class 1A State Semifinals for the fourth time since 2012. This time around the opponent was West Gadsden. Hawthorne rolled into Lakeland sporting an impressive 25-5 record and all five of those losses came on the road. Obviously, today’s task required the Hornets to redeem themselves playing on the road and advance on to the state championship.
West Gadsden holding on to their 23-6 record got in the way of Hawthorne’s way. Hawthorne head coach Greg Bowie credited the team’s loss to lack of execution. Bowie also praised the well-coached and lengthy team, he says the Panthers length got forced many turnovers for them.
That well-coached team is lead by former Gator guard, Andrew Moten. The only other time these two Class 1A teams have met up was back in 2011, when West Gadsden defeated Hawthorne, 66-63. Today’s final score was not as close as the previous one. The Panthers outshined the Hornets in this game, 53-38.
Bowie has been in this position before and on this side of a state semifinal and clearly knows how to bounce back from it. His continuous trips to Lakeland shows his ability to coach up a team and get them back to where they need to be. He definitely has the opportunity to make another comeback with next year’s team.
A good group of Hornets will be returning and looking to sting next year’s opponents.