Lewis living the dream for the ChieftainsPublished 4:54pm Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Leroy Lewis literally grew up around the Dowagiac basketball program.
Lewis, now a sophomore, always wanted to play varsity basketball for the Chieftains.
He spent several years as a manager for Dowagiac and, just when it was time to enter high school, he and his family moved away.
Lewis returned to Dowagiac this year and is now making a dream come true by being a member of the Chieftain varsity program, which opened its season with a dramatic come-from-behind victory over Coloma Friday night.
Lewis was a big part of that victory as he came off the bench and scored all 12 of his points in the second half as Dowagiac pulled out a 60-55 victory.
“Leroy is special to this program,” Chieftain coach Danum Hunt said. “Leroy started out in this program as a manager. I believe he was the manager since the fifth grade, so he has been around this program for a long time.
“He was in there dribbling around, shooting around during practice, paying attention. He didn’t get the opportunity to play here last year because he had moved away.”
Hunt was extremely pleased with the fact that not only did Lewis get to play in his first game for the Chieftains Friday night, but excelled when he hit the court.
“He brings energy defensively,” Hunt said. “He’s athletic. I can move him around because of his versatility even though he is small (5-foot-9) he doesn’t mind getting in there among the trees and banging around.
“The kid can jump out of the gym. He does a lot for us. He gives us energy off the bench and kind of gives us that spark we need if we are a little flat.”
Lewis and the rest of the Chieftains are hoping to make it two straight as they host Vicksburg in a Wolverine Conference non-divisional contest tonight.
The Chieftains and Bulldogs will tip off at 7:15 p.m.