Warriors deal a major upset

Published 10:33 pm Tuesday, February 23, 2010

In the biggest upset of Monday’s full slate of Eastern Region Tournament basketball games, Nansemond River knocked off Beach District champion Landstown, 62-58.

The Eagles came into the contest ranked fourth in the state by the Associated Press and undefeated this season against Group AAA opponents.

Instead, it was the Warriors who rallied after trailing throughout the first three quarters, but never by more than nine, 26-17 early in the second quarter.

Nansemond River did it mostly from three-point range. Brian Clarke hit a three-pointer in the midst of an 11-0 Warrior run to give NR its first lead of the game, 51-49, with 5:49 left. With the game tied, 56-56, Clarke hit another trey with 1:17 left to give the Warriors the lead for good.

Clarke hit three three-pointers and led NR with 20 points. Kerrington Harris had 13 points, including three three-pointers. Morris Johnson, NR’s 6-foot-2 senior center, scored 14 points and Ashton Moore added 10 points.

Landstown was averaging 45 points allowed going into Monday night’s contest and hadn’t allowed more than 60 points to any opponent this season.

The upset moves the Warriors (15-10) to Wednesday’s regional quarterfinals at Norfolk Scope and to only two games away from reaching the VHSL Group AAA State Tournament. Kecoughtan will meet Nansemond River Wednesday in a rematch of a first round game in the 2008 Eastern Region Tournament in which Kecoughtan, the fourth-seeded team from the Peninsula District, upset No. 1-seed Nansemond River at NR.

While not in an upset as big as Nansemond River’s, Kecoughtan supplied a bunch of drama in its 94-89 win over Lake Taylor Monday evening. Kecoughtan trailed by 20 with 3:18 left in the third period. The Peninsula’s Warriors cut Lake Taylor’s lead to 13 going to the fourth period, then scored 41 points in the fourth quarter to come all the way back.

Kecoughtan is led by Peninsula District Player of the Year Dimitri Batten. The 6-foot-4 Batten scored 20 points Monday. Guards Jezreel DeJesus and Anthony Dorsey scored 22 points each.

Kecoughtan’s clearly on a big roll. The Warriors won the Peninsula District Tournament, beating state-ranked Phoebus 75-54 in the tourney final after losing both games against Phoebus during the regular season.