Miller School of Albemarle

Mavericks Clamp Down On Saints

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By Chip Knighton

Going by the numbers, the Miller boys basketball team only “won” one quarter on Tuesday night. But what a quarter it was.

The Mavericks put the clamps on visiting St. Anne’s-Belfield in the third quarter, turning a six-point deficit into a 13-point lead. Then they did enough to make the lead stand up in the fourth in a 73-70 victory.

The Saints (1-3) led by as many as eight points late in the second quarter and were up 43-37 going into the break. The third quarter was all Miller, with one Kodie Critzer field goal serving as the only St. Anne’s offense against 20 points for the hosts.

“I lost it a bit in the locker room,” said Miller coach Scott Willard. “It’s the first time I’ve gotten on them this year, even after Friday [a 61-51 loss to Woodberry Forest]. We cut out the full-court press and focused on our defense.”

That shift in strategy worked beautifully for the Mavericks (1-1), who got eight points from Andrew White in the third and ended the quarter on a 16-0 run.

“We’ve had four third quarters like that,” said St. Anne’s coach Brian Kent before reconsidering. “Not that bad. Pretty bad, though. … We’ve got to be able to come out of the locker room with fire.”

St. Anne’s wouldn’t go quietly, however, scoring the first eight points of the fourth quarter and adding a 7-0 run late in the game to cut the lead to three at 67-64.

Chase Cannon converted a three-point play to give Miller some breathing room, but Brett Johnson scored four straight points to bring the Saints within a bucket at 70-68 with 1:30 remaining. Janeil Jenkins scored on a backdoor cut to push the lead to four, but Critzer sank two free throws at the other end. White scored what would prove to be the game’s last point, making one of two free throws with 18.8 seconds remaining, but missing the second to give St. Anne’s a chance to tie.

After a timeout, Critzer came off a pair of screens, but couldn’t shake free and passed to Taylor Ratliff in the corner. Ratliff found Johnson at the top of the key, but the forward’s contested shot bounced off the rim, preserving the victory for Miller.

White led the Mavericks with 19 points, doing most of his damage off backdoor cuts in the decisive third quarter.

“That’s a set offense,” White said, “so everybody can do things easily. Everybody can get a jump shot, but if you’re cutting, that’s a different story. … I wasn’t taking many jumpers, so I wanted to keep cutting and get to the basket.”

Jenkins had 13 points for Miller and Cannon added 12.

Critzer scored 21 points to lead four St. Anne’s players in double figures. Jordan Davis had 16 points six rebounds, tying teammate Jeff Jones for the game high on the boards. Johnson had 14 points and Charlie Murray came off the bench to score 11.

St. Anne’s returns to action on Friday at home against Collegiate. Miller travels to North Cross today for the second of four games in five days, hoping to put together four quarters like its 20-1 third period against the Saints.

“We made a statement about what we can be and what we can do,” Willard said. “… We put together one quarter of Miller basketball.”

Daily Progress © Copyright 2010 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General company.

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Written by Miller School of Albemarle

December 10, 2010 at 10:57 AM

Posted in Posts

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