JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – None of the players or anybody on the coaching staff was born the last time Paxon reached the final four. The Golden Eagles won their first and only boys basketball state championship in 1965.
Fifty-four years later, Paxon (25-3) is one game away from reaching the class 6A state title game. On Wednesday they’ll face Lakewood -St. Petersburg (26-3) at 6 p.m.
“It means a lot for this school and community,” said Paxon head coach Toby Frazier. “Our kids have a big sense of pride in the school that they go to knowing that their dreams can come true here.”
Last season, Paxon won only 13 games. The Golden Eagles have turned things around with a starting lineup that includes three sophomores and two juniors.
In addition to lacking experience, the Golden Eagles don’t have a lot size. Lakewood has four players that are 6-5 or taller. Playing at a size disadvantage is nothing new to Paxon and it plans to use its speed just like it has done all season.
“We’re just going to continue doing what we’ve been doing all year,” said junior forward Isaiah Adams, who at 6-4 is the tallest player on Paxon’s roster. “Playing hard is what’s gotten us by when we’ve played teams that are bigger than us. That’s what we’ll continue to do.”