After more than 10 years, Leesville back in Holiday Invitational
Posted December 21, 2012
In six seasons, Russ Frazier led Northwood to three eastern regionals, advancing to two state runner-up finishes. Now Frazier will look to instill the same culture of winning at a school that has struggled in recent years.
"At this point in time our goal is to get better every day, and the best thing that I have seen is that we have the effort to try and make that happen,” said Frazier
The Pride started off the season with a 26-point win over the defending Tri-9 Conference regular season and tournament champions – Apex.
"It's been a lot harder, tougher, but we've been working at it, getting better and it brought us together as a team,” said senior Reggie Jones.
Frazier will be building a program in a conference that has produced three regional teams in the last two years, as well as the state runner-up in 2011.
"It's the Cap 8. It doesn't get much better than this in this state," said Frazier. "That's any classification, any league. You know the standard and you have to either match the intensity, match that standard, or try to exceed it."
Frazier doesn't want his team to get ahead of itself though. Although he's encouraged by what he's seen so far, Frazier says real progress takes time.
"Learning how to win is a hard thing to do," Frazier said. "But it's hard to beat a person that never quits. The more they try, the harder they work, and the more they see each other doing that, the harder it is to give up."
This season will mark the first time since 2000 the Pride have played in the Holiday Invitational. In 2000, Leesville finished fourth, losing the third place game to Mount Zion. In 1995, the Pride won the tournament championship over East Wake.
“Being invited to this event is an honor. This is one of the most prestigious tournaments, not just in North Carolina, but in the nation,” said Frazier.