Back-to-back games this week took its toll on Clinton’s JV boys, who won against Richlands on Monday but lost their first game of the season the following night to a powerful Croatan team, who now share first place with the Dark Horses in the ECC Conference.
Croatan got the road win 54-42.
“It was our lowest scoring game of the year,” coach Bobby Lamb acknowledged. “Hats off to Croatan, they out rebounded us in the last minutes of the third quarter and the fourth. They were just the better team.”
Lamb attributed some of the team’s problems to a hard-fought Monday game against Richlands, with the tough battle with Croatan following on its heels.
“I thought we played a really strong first half, but by the third quarter our legs were giving out on us. I had to use my bench more and my rotations weren’t as strong,” Lamb said.
But, despite the loss, Lamb touted the team’s great supporters — parents, fans and cheerleaders — who, he said, were still undefeated in their efforts to cheer the team on at both away and home games.
“I cannot tell you how much I appreciate them,” Lamb added.
Raquan Faison led scoring for the Horses with 12 points. Michael Boykin had 11; Emmanuel Howard, 4; Maurice Robinson, 4; Jaquan McLean, 4; Jalalen Best, 2; Josiah Pope, 2; Jonathan Wright,2; and Logan Batchelor, 1.
The loss moves Clinton’s record to 17-1 overall and 8-1 in the conference.
They travel to Swansboro Friday afternoon.
One night earlier, the JV Dark Horses were on fire as they took down Richlands in a 77-51 road victory.
Defense, Lamb stressed, was the key to the game, that and a total team effort that saw 13 players score.
“The guys played a great game, supported by their fans and parents,” Lamb said.
Clinton took the first quarter lead at 18-12 and added 12 more point in the second to go into the half ahead 30-24.
The young Horses continued to play strong in the third period, scoring another 20 points and holding Richlands to 15. Another 26 points from Clinton in the final period secured the win.
“I was very pleased with the way they played,” Lamb said.
Best and Boykin led scoring in Monday’s game, with 9 points each; Robinson had 8; Wright, 8; Batchelor, 8; Howard, 7; Faison, 6; Kajuan Morrisey, 6; McLean, 6; Pope, 3; Hyson Howard, 2; Blake Davise, 2; and Trayquan Bryant, 2.