Behind strong performances by Deion Scott, Will Howard, and DaQuan Pollard, the Caroline High School basketball team picked up a pair of Battlefield District wins over Spotsylvania and James Monroe.
The Cavaliers swept both district opponents in action last week, defeating host Spotsylvania 69-60 and then holding off visiting James Monroe 73-66. Picking up two wins, the Cavaliers improved to 2-2 in district play and 4-4 overall.
The trio of Howard, a junior, and the two seniors, Scott, and Pollard, provided plenty of the scoring punch for the Cavaliers.
Howard gave a dominating performance against the James Monroe Yellow Jackets Thursday, scoring 19 points to lead the team. He was particularly effective inside at the low post position, either powering to the basket or going up for quick jump shots, and making shots after pulling down an offensive rebound. Scott added 17 points in the win against James Monroe, and Pollard scored 14 points.
At Spotsylvania on Tuesday, Scott led four Cavaliers scoring in double figures to defeat the Knights. Pollard also scored 14 points in that contest, and Dwandre Parker and Aason Pankey each added 10 points.
Against James Monroe, the Cavaliers got off to a quick start. Pollard scored 8 points and Howard added 5 in the first quarter as Caroline took a 10-point lead, 19-9 lead. Howard scored all his points in the paint in the first quarter while Pollard was effective on the outside.
Scott made a couple of quick layups to get things rolling in the second quarter, and the Cavaliers extended their lead to 15 points, 41-26, at intermission as the Yellow Jackets suffered from poor shooting.
The teams played about even in the third quarter, although James Monroe out-scored Caroline 24-18 in the final frame.
The Yellow Jackets were led by Marcus Finnie’s 23 points; Alex Baker added 13 points for JM.
“We expected a tough game when we came here,” said JM coach Antoine Coghill, “We had a long football season, and this is only the second game we have had with everyone on the team.”
The Cavaliers played with intensity, noted coach Antoine Johnson. “They always get fired up for this game,” he said. “It is such a rivalry.”
“We came together as a team tonight with everyone playing hard,” said Howard.
The difference at Spotsylvania was the second quarter. Holding a 12-11 edge after one quarter, Pankey, Pollard, and Scott each sank treys in the first 90 seconds of the second period. The Cavaliers went on to out-score the Knights 21-14 and build an 8-point lead at intermission, 33-25. The teams played even the rest of the way.
Both teams had five 3-point baskets. Scott had two for Caroline, and Alan Courtney and Bilal Marlowe both had two for Spotsylvania. Courtney scored 20 points to pace the Knights and Darius Carter added 10 points.
“We had a strong JV program last year and not much of a varsity program,” said Spotsylvania coach Leonard Carlson, “so this year we are trying to put together two teams. It is going to take some time.”
This week Caroline is scheduled to visit Lee-Davis in Mechanicsville on Friday.