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The Caroline High Cavalier boys basketball team lost two games just before the Christmas break.
On Dec. 19, the Cavaliers fell to Patrick Henry High (Ashland) 59-58 and on Dec. 20, CHS lost to King George High, 69-54, after beating hapless Spotsylvania 69-63 on Dec. 17.
All three games represented to the Cavaliers’ attempt to overcome double-digit deficits in the score. When playing Spotsylvania, it worked. When playing Patrick Henry (Ashland) and King George, it did not.
Against the King George Foxes, the Cavaliers came out strong in the first quarter, going ahead 16-13 with the solid, fast pace for which the Cavaliers are often noted. However, in the second quarter, the King George implemented a 1-3-1 three-quarter press that stymied Caroline as they outscored the Cavaliers 20-4. In a quarter laden with bad passes and attempts to dribble through the King George press, Caroline added to their woes with mental errors and turn overs.
Although the second half was played closer, Caroline was never able to dig its way out of the double digit hole where it found itself. AJ Derricott and Darius Young continued to lead the Cavaliers in scoring with 12 points each, but all the Cavaliers found themselves stymied by the strong inside defense of King George.
“We’re going back into the gym over the break,” commented Cavalier Coach Antoine Johnson. “We have a lot of things to work on.”
King George High’s scoring was led by Anthony Howard with 21 points for the contest and followed by Elan Chase with 16.
Against the Patrick Henry Patriots, the Cavaliers again found themselves in a double-digit deficit after playing close for the first half. In the final quarter, which the Cavaliers went into 9 points behind, they did not score until 4:58 was left in the game. By the time they did begin scoring again, they were behind by 17 points. It was PH’s turn to go dry scoring as Caroline scratched its way back to tie the score 58-58 as the clock ran down. Then a foul was called on AJ Derricot and the Patriots scored on a free throw with no time left on the clock to win 59-58.
Ironically, Caroline scored on 2 free throws by Darius Young to tie the game at 58 prior to the foul called. Many were upset that a foul was called at the very last second, stating it was not a flagrant foul and the players should have been allowed decide the game instead of the referee making that decision. In the end, the referee’s decision was upheld.
Aason Pankey and Darius Young led the Cavaliers with 14 points each with Jaron Clipper and Derricott each scoring 11. Derricott’s play included a double-double—the accumulation of a double-digit number total in two of the five categories in a game. Tarik McLain led the Patriots with 18 points.
The Cavaliers have been off for the entire holiday break and will return to action Tuesday, Jan. 7, as they host Courtland High School. On Friday, Jan. 10, Caroline will again play host as James Monroe High comes to town.
In other Cavalier action, the girls varsity basketball team beat Northumberland High 47 to 41 on Dec. 19 and defeated King George High 50 to 38 on Dec. 20.
The junior varsity boys basketball team had these results: a win of 60 to 23 against Spotsylvania High on Dec. 17; a win of 35 to 29 against Patrick Henry High on Dec. 19 and a win of 37 to 22 against King George High on Dec. 20.