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Walsingham Academy's offense has been a two-headed monster at times this season.
With Wake Forest commit Richard Washington and 6-foot-8 Serbian-born transfer Dusan Vicentic, who is receiving interest from Division I schools, the Trojans have looked dominant outside of a two-point loss to Amelia Academy.
Walsingham Boys Basketball Coach Billy Barnes said he wanted his team to move away from depending on Washington and Vicentic before heading into the meat of the season.
The Trojans did just that Tuesday evening, as Barnes played every player on the roster during a commanding 67-32 victory over Richmond Christian.
While the Trojans got 15 points from Washington and Vicentic, they also earned 11 points from Jaylin Stewart, nine points from Dominic Demodna and seven points from James West and Sam Jones.
But for Barnes, Tuesday's game was more about improving on the defensive end of the court.
"I know we can score," he said. "We have been really focusing on our defense, especially our man-to-man defense. I think we got better with that tonight."
Walsingham played a smother man-to-man defense that was bolstered by an effective half-court press. Giving the Richmond Christian offense no space to work, Walsingham recorded numerous turnovers that led to easy layups in transition.
On the other end of the court, Walsingham's offense easily handled the 2-3 zone implemented by Richmond Christian.
Crisp cross-court passes by Walsingham send the Richmond Christian defense chasing the ball. A good ball fake from the top of the key usually placed the Richmond Christian defense out of position, leaving a Walsingham shooter open behind the 3-point line.
The Trojans sank eight 3-pointers on the night, most of which were uncontested.
Washington dominated the first half for Walsingham, driving easily to the lane and spotting up for back-to-back 3-pointers in the first quarter. Washington added a pair of transition layups in the second quarter.
The second half belonged to Vicentic, who used his size to muscle his way into the paint and draw fouls.
While the free throw shooting left something to be desired – Vicentic missed all four free throw attempts – he was able to finish through contact en route to a 13-point second half performance.
"He's very skilled and fairly athletic, and you obviously add size," Barnes said of Vicentic. "He gives us a great presence in the paint."
The second half featured more unfamiliar faces for the Trojans as Barnes was able to get every player on the roster into the game. Even with reserve players in the game, the Trojans were able to cruise to an easy victory in front of their home crowd.
Walsingham (5-1) will now prepare for play in the Breath & Life Tournament at Wakefield School on Friday and Saturday.
Richmond Christian: 6 9 8 9 — 32
Walsingham Academy: 19 14 17 17 — 67
Richmond Christian: Gray 8, Woodson 5, Harold 2, Whitlow 12, Coward 2, Collier 3
Walsingham Academy: Washington 15, Vicentic 15, West 7, Stewart 11, Gero 3, Demodna 9, Jones 7
3-point goals: Richmond Christian 2 (Woodson, Collier), Walsingham Academy 8 (Vicentic, Washington 2, West, Stewart, Gero, Demodna, Jones)
Green's 19 Leads WCA Over Stonebridge
Xavier Green scored a team-high 19 points for Williamsburg Christian Academy during an 81-61 win at home against Stonebridge on Tuesday evening.
Also adding key performances for the Eagles were Ryan Flanagan, who had 14 points, and Cle'Von Greene with 13 points.
WCA opened with a strong first quarter in which the Eagles scored 27 points to Stonebridge's 12. The second quarter, while slower for both teams, still saw WCA extend its lead.
By halftime, the Eagles held a commanding 44-19 advantage over Stonebridge.
With a large lead established, WCA was able to get reserve players in the game in the second half during the decisive victory.
WCA (5-0) has a major game Wednesday at home against Amelia Academy.
Stonebridge: 12 9 20 21 — 61
WCA: 27 17 26 18 — 81
Stonebridge: Philpott 20, Faulk 17, Frank 21, Lopez 2, Baronker 2
WCA: Flanagan 14, Kean 4, D. Cook 9, Duncan 4, Brown 9, R. Cook 4, Greene 13, Green 19, Anderson 4, Radcliffe 6, Stover 2
3-point goals: Stronebridge 1 (Philpott), WCA 3 (D. Cook, Brown, Greene)
Strong First Half Leads HRA to Victory
Hampton Roads Academy outscored Christchurch 37-5 in the first half en route to a 62-46 win at home Tuesday.
Leading the way for HRA was Patrick Phillips, who finished with a game-high 19 points. Bryan Hart logged 16 points, while Anthony Picott added 14 points.
The Navigators played stellar defense in the first half as Christchurch shot a dismal 2-of-16 from the field. Conversely, the Navigators made 16-of-34 shots from the field in the first half.
With a strong lead in hand, HRA was able to take its foot off the pedal in the second half. Despite being outscored 22-10 in the fourth quarter, the Navigators were still able to cruise to a 16-point victory.
HRA (1-2) will now play host to Peninsula Catholic on Friday.
Christchurch: 2 3 19 22 — 46
Hampton Roads Academy: 20 17 15 10 — 62
Christchurch: Gordon 10, Kirkmire 2, Rice 13, Stilianus 6, Johnson 6, I. Eze 2, U. Eze 5, Darbue 2
Hampton Roads Academy: Humphry 4, Hart 16, Picott 14, Mather 4, Phillips 19, Wingfield 5
3-point goals: Christchurch 5 (Rice 3, Johnson 2), Hampton Roads Academy 2 (Hart, Wingfield)