LAKELAND — Tampa Bay’s last chance for a basketball state champion this season fell short in the Class 5A final with Lakewood falling to Plantation American Heritage, 98-70, on Saturday.
Lakewood (21-11) was seeking the program’s third state title and first since 2005.
Five players scored in double figures for American Heritage (25-7), which won the first state title in program history. Junior guard Keshawn Evans led the Patriots with 25 points and six assists, while Justin Massey added 17 points and seven assists.
Drake Lamont, the Patriots’ 6-foot-8 center who will play for Western Michigan, had 12 points and nine rebounds.
Jacobi Boykins, Lakewood’s 6-5 senior forward who will play for Louisiana Tech, finished with a game-high 28 points and 13 rebounds, while Anthony Lawrence added 18 points and 13 rebounds. American Heritage, ranked No. 2 in the 5A state poll, led 54-31 at halftime and shot 65 percent from the field, including 10-of-21 from 3-point range.
Lakewood, meanwhile, shot 35 percent from the floor and 15 percent from the 3-point line, making only four of 26 attempts. The Spartans were 3-of-19 from beyond the arc in the second half.
Lakewood entered the game ranked fourth in the 5A state poll. The Spartans lost in the 5A title game in 2007 and 2008.