Marco Island Academy coach Roger Raymond knew his team needed to play its best if the Rays were to have a chance against local power First Baptist Academy and the team's twin towers.

Unfortunately, the Rays came out cold and never really warmed up, falling 63-24 in their home gym.

“It would take a near-perfect game for us to stay with them,” Raymond said after the game. “They have two near-7-foot players. Our kids had a tough time both offensively and defensively.”

The Rays shot only 20 percent from the field and were held to three points in the fourth quarter.

“Our two leading scorers were a combined five of 39 shooting,” Raymond said. “Everyone knows our key is shooting. When it goes bad, we’re in trouble. But the kids played hard and I’m happy with their effort. It just wasn’t our night.”

Things don’t get easier for the Rays (5-11), with a number of outstanding programs remaining on their schedule.

“This season our schedule is, by far, the most demanding in the history of the school,” Raymond said. “In the next 10 days, we have six very difficult games, with five of them being on the road.”

Rays’ next game

The Rays return home Friday for a match-up with Gateway Charter, who they edged 57-56 earlier this season.