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Sophomore Peebles making impact in a variety of ways for improving Jays


Clever sophomore forward Lucas Peebles is following the same path of many of his relatives, beginning with his grandfather more than 40 years ago, by wearing a Jays uniform.

“Most of them played baseball,” Lucas said.

Peebles found a mentor on the hardwood in the late Rob Yanders. While playing AAU ball for Yanders Law, Peebles was tutored by the former Missouri State star and founder of The Basketball Movement in Nixa.

“I worked with him for a couple years and he taught me so much,” Peebles said. “He pushed me every time I went into the gym. It really soaked in. I've wanted to get better ever since then.”

Peebles is making a favorable impression on first-year Clever coach Sean Price as the proverbial student of the game. Peebles’ all-around play at both ends of the floor has stood out, as the Jays (3-6) already are within one win of matching their wins total from all of last season.

“Lucas is a competitor. He's very motivated to do well on his own,” Price said. “He has a great mind and is a very coachable kid. He does all the things we ask him to do. We love to have him on our team.”

Even with Peebles being an underclassmen, Price hasn’t backed away from asking him to be among the Jays’ leaders.

“There is a lot put on his shoulders as a sophomore,” Price said. “Lucas is a guy that we ask to do a lot for us, not only playing defense, but handling the ball. He’s working hard to be more consistent as a 3-point shooter. He’s very streaky right now.  

“I think he’s going to continue to grow and get better,” Price added. “He’s going to get better the more he plays.”

Peebles’ most recent outing saw him score 11 points in Clever’s victory versus Billings last Friday. He had a pair of 3-pointers.

Many of his varied contributions often don’t show up on the stats sheet.

“Coach wants me to bring energy, pick everybody up and do the little things and I like to hustle and do the little things to win the game,” Peebles said. “I like playing defense, guarding and trying to stop the best player on the other team. I also like to pass and see my teammates score.”