The Lummi boys’ basketball team is stacked with seniors — eight of the 10 listed players on the roster will be departing at the end of the season.
Despite the Blackhawks having so much experience, it’s been a sophomore who’s stood out.
Trazil Lane is averaging a team-high 17.6 points per game and it hasn’t been during the easy minutes.
Lane has scored 23 points in three of the Blackhawks’ five playoff games and 21 in the most recent. He’ll be looking to find some of the same success against Entiat on Thursday, March 5, at the Spokane Arena in a Class 1B Hardwood Classic quarterfinal contest.
“His maturity has really shown he’s well beyond his years on the basketball court,” Lummi coach Jerome Toby said in a phone interview. “It still surprises me that he’s able to play at such a high level ... and is able to hold his composure and deliver the way he has.”
The Lummi post player scores mostly when plays break down or from offensive rebounds, rather than designed sets, using his natural athleticism combined with great talent and a high basketball IQ to be the Blackhawks’ go-to guy, Toby said.
The effort he displays night in and night out, whether it’s practice or a game, has earned him the title of “quiet leader” from his coach.
With so many vocal seniors, Toby doesn’t have to speak up to lead. He’s been able to sit back and just focus on playing.
“It’s been fun,” Lane said in a phone interview. “We’re running things through them. I’m just kind of the garbage man.”
The best part for Lane is that the seniors aren’t just his teammates but his family also. His older brother, Kavarez, is averaging 10.4 points per game and his cousin, Austin Brockie, is averaging 12.8 points per game.
“I know they’re reliable, knowing we’re all going to give our fullest and going to play with heart,” Lane said. “That’s what I love about my brother. He plays with heart. To see where he’s at now, from his injuries to overcome those, just to be where he’s at. That’s why I give it my all.”
The motto Lane uses is “hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”
Well, Lane’s got both and it’s made the Blackhawks extremely dangerous, as they’ve ran the table up to this point, at an undefeated 24-0, holding the No. 1 ranking the polls for most of the season.
It may have been a surprise to see some people to see Lummi making a run at the title, but it’s been no surprise to the Blackhawks.
“When we went over to the Gonzaga camp, I got the feeling we could do something,” Lane said. “We were beating 3A schools.”
Much of the success of the Blackhawks has come from Lane’s maturity on the court. He made an immediate impact as a freshman, but this season has grown into a star.
“He’s smarter with his shot selection. He doesn’t force anything. As a freshman he showed some immaturity with his shot selection and making the right play,” Toby said.. “He now knows when to pass up the shot and find teammates. He knows who to get the ball to and where the shooters are.”
It was a process in which Lane had to observe how his elder teammates played the game so he could become a better player, a value his parents instilled in him.
“My dad tells me to stay humble and just watch and learn,” Lane said. “They are four-year and three-year starters. I just learn from them. They talk to me during practices and help me with games and what to do and what not do in mistakes I would make.”
The effort Lane has put in the game has all been worth it, as the Blackhawks are trying to take home the trophy for the first time in school history.
But it isn’t the accolades, the trophy or anything material that’s pushed Lane to continue to give it his all.
Lane gave a straightforward explanation for it, simply saying, “I love basketball.”