By Ned Belliveau
Senior, Fletcher Lumpkin
Q: What do you think the reason for the team’s success this year has been?
A: Harrison and Khobi [laughs]. The coaches have helped us emphasize defense more. We’re more experienced and we have five seniors. Our field goal percentage is also really good thanks to Harrison and Khobi; they lead the league in field goal percentage. Plus we have good leadership and experience. Our set is more inside-out as well, we’re more of a big team. Not to mention, we’re very deep.
Q: What are your goals for the rest of the season?
A: Win the ODAC, make the NCAA tournament, get NCAA home games, make the final four and win the national championship.
Q: Do you think that this team can make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament?
A: Yeah, we’re very talented and deep. Our bench is very good. We believe we can, we believe our second five is better than any second five in the nation. If we win the ODAC and get those home games, that could really help us, but we have to take it day-by-day, one day at a time.
Q: Why did you choose Hampden-Sydney?
A: It was close to home, good school, had fun on my visits. I knew people from my high school who were going here, and the good connections when you get out of here. And basketball, obviously.
Q: What is your best on-court memory?
A: That game we just had against Virginia Wesleyan and the game against Randolph-Macon when I was a sophomore, we ended up losing both games but the atmosphere was great. Those were definitely the two craziest games here.
Q: What is your best off the court memory from H-SC?
A: Pretty much everything other than basketball, enjoying the campus life, the teachers are nice, and the weekends and the parties are great too. This winter break, we all lived together on campus which was really cool. You have nothing to worry about other than basketball.
Q: What is your favorite play to make?
A: Mine would be dishing an alley-oop to Harrison or Khobi. Getting a steal and getting an alley-oop, we call it a super-hustle play.
Q: What’s going to be your biggest takeaway from your basketball career here at H-SC?
A: You just grow as an individual, you grow as a person, being a captain it makes you a leader, it makes you more vocal. When I was a freshman, I didn’t play because I had a knee surgery, and it makes you want it more. You have to give it your all. Teaches you a lot of life lessons like how to fight through adversity, and as an athlete you get to learn things that you don’t get to as a regular student.
Q: The loss to Virginia Wesleyan was a tough one, but do you think it could benefit the team in the long run?
A: You don’t want to say that going into games, but you see teams like the Patriots or Illinois who go undefeated all season and lose in the final. It brings you back down to earth and helps you re-focus. It’s obviously not a good thing to lose, but in the end I think it can help. It makes you human again. We have three games in ODACs, and however many in NCAAs, and we know we can win that many in a row.
Q: What are your plans after graduation?
A: I would like to get into coaching. I don’t know what level yet. College would be more challenging with the recruiting and the harder stuff. But I might stay a fifth year since I didn’t play my freshman year so I have an extra year of eligibility, but that’s still up in the air. I haven’t made a decision yet.
Q: I’ve asked Harrison and Khobi this so I have to ask you too, how good of a dancer are you?
A: Well [on the weekends] I think I’m Michael Jackson; people get a kick out of that [laughs]. I got a white boy style that’s always funny. But Leon and Alex are definitely the dancers of the team, like Harrison said.