Being older and wiser has certainly factored into the unprecedented success of the senior-laden Greenwood Christian Academy boys basketball team.
Being lighter hasn’t hurt, either.
The 165 pounds senior guard Lucas Peters carries on his 6-foot-1 frame is a 35-pound decrease from this time last year.
A combination of exercise and a more-disciplined approach to diet allowed Peters, a 14.8 points-a-game scorer as a junior, to shed the weight during the offseason.
Numbers trending downward resulted in other ones going up.
On the strength of 82 3-point baskets, Peters averages a team-high 21.8 points for Greenwood Christian, which faces Metropolitan this morning in a semifinal of the Class A Martinsville Regional.
Peters also is the second player in program history to reach the 1,000-point plateau. His career-best 45-point barrage against Irvington Prep Academy on Feb. 25 put him over the hump. He has 1,082 career points heading into today.
“It was probably a combination of things, like having a little trouble with conditioning at the end of last season,” Peters
said of his decision to get in better cardiovascular shape. “We would do suicides in practice, and I wasn’t in front the way I was my sophomore year.”
Laughing, Peters added, “I don’t want to say they’re easy now, but they are easier.”
Peters’ well-rounded game also has produced per-game averages of 6.1 rebounds and four assists. He’s saved his best for the Cougars’ stretch run, averaging 25.5 points in their past eight games after scoring at a 19.8 clip over the season’s first eight games.
“It was really impressive early on the way Lucas was making the extra pass,” Cougars’ coach Jamie Satre said. “Recently he’s been scoring more, so he’s doing whatever we need him to do. And Lucas is very coachable. Some kids you can get on and they won’t play the same way.
“He takes it, processes it and then tries to apply it the best way he can.”
Peters, who is being recruited by Albion College and Grand Valley State University, said removing fast food and soda from his diet assisted greatly in the improvement on the court.
“Fries are what killed me,” said Peters, who has made protein bars and water consumption part of his daily regimen.
All is well in the world of Lucas Peters. He’s lighter, better and two victories from leading Greenwood Christian to its first-ever semistate.
“I think getting to 1,000 points definitely helped me because it was a weight off my shoulders,” he said. “It was a relief when I got it. Exciting, but a relief. I’m definitely looking forward to playing at Martinsville in that atmosphere and hopefully a second week of cutting down the nets.
“Confidence is key for us because it seems like we’re never really the favorite.”