Warriors lose close one to Ocean Lakes

Published 9:48 pm Friday, December 2, 2016

Nansemond River High School boys’ basketball team played its second of three games this week against Ocean Lakes High School.

It was a close game throughout the evening, but the Dolphins pulled away in overtime Thursday night at Nansemond River to win 66-62. The Warriors had won last year’s meeting by 10 points.

The Warriors got out to a 5-0 lead, but the Dolphins returned the favor with an 8-0 run. The Warriors could not regain the lead in the quarter, despite junior point guard Josh Hales’ six points on 3-3 shooting. Dolphins were up 14-13 after the first quarter of play.

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The Warriors got hot once again to open the second quarter, opening on a 5-0 mini-run with a jumper by Hale and a three-pointer by Vidal Wilkins. The quarter went back and forth with three lead changes, and the Warriors went into halftime only up by two, 30-28. Ocean Lakes closed the half with a deep buzzer-beater three-pointed. Hale led the Warriors in scoring at the half, with 11 points on 50-percent shooting.

In the third, both teams continued to go back and forth. The Warriors hit seven of 16 from the floor, while the Dolphins kept it close with four three-pointers. NRHS led much of the fourth quarter until the Dolphins’ Mike Campbell hit a long contested three with 38 seconds to go to tie the score at 60. The Warriors held for the last shot but junior forward Gerard Stringer’s 17-footer was off the mark with two seconds to go.

Nansemond had numerous chances to get a win in overtime. With the Warriors up 62-61, a failed box out on a free throw line lead to an Alex Kessler three-pointer from nearly 25 feet out. That put the Dolphins up 64-62 and then, with 14 seconds to go, a three-pointer by freshman Tyler Chatman was negated on a charging call on the pass to him. The Warriors were forced to foul, and Alan Ogletree hit two free throws to seal the win for Ocean Lakes. Campbell led the way for Ocean Lakes with 16 points.

“‘We had our chances,” Warriors coach Ed Young said. “We didn’t execute like we are capable of and did not do the expected ‘little’ things that win you games. We did a very good job (containing) Campbell after his 35-point game before us.”

Hale led the way for the Warriors with a career game of 19 points on 8-16 shooting, five assists and three steals. He also had a key blocked shot late in the game. NRHS shot only 35 percent from the floor and 50 percent from the free throw line. Even though the Warriors didn’t have their best day shooting, it is encouraging that the game was so close, anticipating that in the future the Warriors’ shooting percentages will get better and allow them to win games.

“We showed improvement from our 27-point loss to Oscar Smith on Tuesday,” Young said, “but we didn’t play with the same intensity we need to put the pressure on our opponents, but we’ll get better.”