The Caravel Buccaneers held off a furious fourth quarter rally by Smyrna for a 48-44 boy’s basketball win Wednesday night on the Eagles home floor.
The Bucs’ John Clemmons was riddled with foul trouble and sat out a good portion of the second quarter but still managed to lead the team with 21 points. The Eagles also received a 21 point performance from Elisha “Lish” Gregory in a losing effort.
Smyrna raced out to an early 6-2 lead as Gregory made a basket & converted four free throws, but Caravel came back to tie the game after one period at 9-9. The second quarter belonged to the Bucs as they went on a 10-0 run from the final moments of the opening frame into the 2nd period with Clemmons on the bench with 3 personal fouls. Caravel held a seven point advantage at the break 22-15 with a suffocating defensive effort that throttled the Eagles half-court offense.
The two teams made up for a lack of scoring by totaling 34 points in the 3rd quarter. Majesti Carter (2 points in the 1st half) found his rhythm nailing two 3-pointers and scoring 10 points in the period to keep the Eagles within striking distance as Caravel increased its lead to double-digits by as many as 13, thanks to the combined efforts of Clemmons, Dominique Wyatt and Miles White. The Bucs took an 11-point advantage into the final eight minutes at 41-30.
Caravel retained that margin until Carter drained a “corner” tre’ to slice the lead to 45-37. Two minutes later Gregory made two foul shots to make it a 2-possession game at 45-39. Smyrna forced the Bucs into a turnover on the next trip down the floor and Devin Demoe made a three-point-shot at the top of the circle to bring the home crowd alive as the lead was now just 45-42. Demoe then stripped the ball, fed Gregory in the open court and he slammed the shot, closing the score to 45-44 and the “joint was jumping”.
Caravel coach Mark Tobin called a time out to settle his young team and set up the final minute of play. The Buccaneers start 3 sophomores, a junior and just one senior.
With :30 to go, Miles White drove through the paint and converted a bucket to push the lead back to 47-44. That layup broke Smyrna’s 10-0 run and a 4:00 scoring drought for the Bucs. Smyrna missed a shot on the other end, and had to foul. Wyatt made the important “front end” of the one-and-one to seal the win and made the final 48-44.
Caravel improves to 2-1 while the Eagles fall to 1-2. Both teams will compete in the Governor’s Challenge after Christmas at the Wicomico Civic center in Salisbury, MD.
Besides the 21-point effort by Clemmons, Wyatt finished with 12 points and White added 8 for Caravel. Smyrna was paced by Gregory’s 21 points, Carter chipped in with 15, while Demoe had 8.
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