Spiritual lever for Lakeside

Peter SweeneyGeraldton Guardian
Lakeside isn’t expecting a lot of support when they take on the Buccs at Activewest Stadium tomorrow.
Camera IconLakeside isn’t expecting a lot of support when they take on the Buccs at Activewest Stadium tomorrow. Credit: Arctic Moon Photography

Church-driven Lakeside Lightning can be beaten on the court, but few sides can match their lifestyle off it.

Basketball is much more than a game to those at Lakeside — where the club wants its players to adopt a “practise what you preach” philosophy.

As they do every Thursday pre-training, Lakeside had a one-hour “Team Time” session last night.

“It can be either spiritual in nature or leadership building,” head coach David Daniels said.

“Our club is not only about developing basketballers, we want to build people physically, spiritually and emotionally.

“We want them to be totally balanced. Just before we go out to play, we say a prayer.

“Sure, we compete to win but we believe, and understand, there is a bigger picture than the game.”

Daniels, in his second year at the helm, described Lakeside as a “pretty unique” experience.

“I have worked in basketball circles around the world and haven’t seen anything like it,” he said.

The club — four-time SBL champions and the current queens of the women’s competition — is part of the Lakeside Baptist Church in the southern suburbs of Perth.

Every Sunday a stage is moved onto the main court and a service is held.

“I am not ordained but I have been involved in ministry,” Daniels said.

“From the top down, we want and have good people at the club who care about each other and it gives balance.

“The church is involved and we have good support from the people.”

That’s something — good support — which Lakeside isn’t expecting tomorrow night when they take on the Buccs at Activewest Stadium.

It is the first meeting of the sides this season, but they are booked to play again in Perth in five weeks.

“We’re not as high as the Buccs but we’re not much lower,” Daniels said.

“I think we’ve had one more loss. They are just a really strong side, full of inside and outside threats.

“Liam Hunt has responded well, Lasher is back for a second year, Alipate can play, Ralph is still shooting the lights out, the import (Deangelo Isby) is reportedly doing well.

“All of them can play.

“They are arguably the most talented team in the league. But we also have a few inside and outside strengths.”

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