With the Christmas break over, it’s back to business in the Northern Neck basketball wars. Once again, with the parity within the district, that old saying “You had better come ready to play!” is true. In this past week, Northumberland took two victories over district opponents Rappahannock and Essex but fell to West Point on Wednesday, 57-45.
The Northumberland Indians opened the week by topping the Raiders 71-62. The game was characterized by shifts in momentum. The Indians had it in the first half, and then the pendulum swung towards Rappahannock in the final period of play.
A 15-12 Northumberland lead bulged out to a 43-33 halftime advantage, but then the Raiders went on a 28-13 final-quarter tear that almost sent the Indians home with a loss.
“We were fine,” said Coach Michael Stevenson. “At one point [we were] up 25 or more. We put in some subs and things started to unravel. The starters came back to start the fourth quarter and made some turnovers.”
But the positive side for the Indians coaching staff was that, even then, the players did not fold, and Northumberland was able to hang on for the victory.
Stevenson praised the Raiders for their athleticism.
“They are going to be a hard test for anyone that plays them,” said Stevenson. The boys’ basketball game on Tuesday may very well be the last time that the Indians play in the Raiders’ old gym.
For Northumberland, Wesley Jackson led the attack with 23 points. Dashaud Murphy dropped in 12 points with Tevin Carter and Hakeem Shabazz both scoring eight. Carter had 13 rebounds and Murphy had 10.
Shabazz had seven assists and Jackson had four. Jackson added six steals, followed by Carter and Elvin Cottrell with four each. Murphy also blocked three shots from Rappahannock.
The Raiders were led in scoring by Devonte Ellis with 24 points, Marcus Byrd with 12 and Tevin Fisher with 11.
On Wednesday at West Point, the Indians faced a different team than they had earlier in the season.
-Pick up a copy of the January 15 issue of the Northumberland Echo to read the full story!