Miller School of Albemarle

LCA swept by Miller School in BRC, VIC finales

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By Ted Allen
Published: February 18, 2011

So close, but so far away.

Liberty Christian Academy’s girls and boys basketball teams narrowly missed upsetting a Blue Ridge Conference power and Virginia Independent Conference contender from Miller School on Thursday night.

Instead the Mavericks completed season sweeps in a girls-boys doubleheader at LCA.

In the boys game, Andrew White sat out the entire second quarter with foul trouble before scoring 17 of Miller’s 23 points in the second half for a 48-46 triumph.

White finished with a game-high 23 points, one more than LCA senior Ethan Layer, who missed a potentially tying 3-pointer from well beyond the top right of the arc with 12.4 seconds left.

“That was tough,” Layer said. “I thought that was in. It was very frustrating to miss that. We had a chance to win, we stuck in it the whole game and put ourselves in a situation to come out on top, (but) just couldn’t hit the shots.”

Layer sank a long 3 from the top of the key to pull the Bulldogs back within 47-46 with 2.0 seconds left, but after White was fouled and hit one of his two free throws, Layer had his last-second 3-point attempt from inside half court fall short.

“I got an OK look, but they hit the ball and I had to double-clutch it,” Layer said. “I still thought it might go in.”

LCA coach John Patterson said the Bulldogs need a complete team effort to be successful against VIC opponents.

“That’s how we beat Hargrave (Military Academy on Tuesday) and that’s how we beat VES (last) Friday,” he said. “If our role guys step up and score the ball a little bit, we’ve got a chance, but Ethan can’t do it all by himself. Our role guys make or break us.”

Both teams sank seven 3-pointers, with Layer hitting four and Seth Good drilling three for LCA and Travis Hester draining three, Daniel Ginsberg knocking down two and Chase Cannon and White each sinking one for the Mavericks.

But though the Bulldogs held a 24-18 edge in rebounding, Miller took control in the paint.

“We just wanted to slow them down a little bit and be able to beat them where we thought we had an advantage, which is down low,” White said. “I found some things down low to contribute, got some good rebounds, scored on the block a little bit, drew some fouls. It was a different kind of game for me, but I’ll take it (and) this win.”

The Mavericks will likely face Roanoke Catholic in next Thursday’s VIC tournament semifinal, with the winner of that taking on the winner of the other semifinal matchup between LCA and Blue Ridge, which beat Miller on Tuesday 53-34, next Saturday in the VIC Division I final at Virginia Episcopal School.

“They’re the No. 1 team, probably ranked nationally,” Patterson said of Blue Ridge, a team the Bulldogs upset in the first round of last year’s tournament. “They haven’t lost a game this year.”

“Night-in and night-out, we’ve got tough opponents, but it makes us better in the long run,” Layer added.

LCA may need to win the tournament, or at least beat Blue Ridge, to have a shot to make the Virginia Independent Schools Division I state tournament.

“It’s going to take perfect basketball, but we’re capable of that, I think,” Patterson said. “We’re really playing the best we’ve played all year and that’s the right time to be playing at your best, right now.”

In Thursday’s girls game, Miller (18-4, 7-0 Blue Ridge Conference) got 12 points from Ashley Bowles and outscored its hosts 7-2 in overtime to pull out a 45-40 victory over the Bulldogs (15-7, 6-1), who were paced by Courtney Powell’s 11 points and 10 from Alana Arias.

“In our conference, they’re back-to-back champions and they have several girls who play with championship confidence,” LCA coach Tom Brown said. “We’re trying to close the gap and we took another step forward tonight by taking them to overtime. If everything holds true to form, we’ll meet them again (in the BRC championship game) next Saturday at VES.”

(original link is HERE)


Written by Miller School of Albemarle

February 18, 2011 at 9:22 AM

Posted in Posts

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