Boys fall to 2-1 vs. Stallions


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In the first two games of the season, the varsity boys basketball team was able to overcome sluggish starts to defeat Wakefield and J.E.B. Stuart High Schools. On Dec. 10, however, the team dug itself too big of a hole and never could overcome a 13-0 start by South County, falling to the Stallions, 65-58.

“Some of us didn’t come out to play at the beginning,” Head Coach Anthony Harper said. “We were sleepwalking for part of the first quarter but I wanted to try to let [the team] work it out. But I probably should have called a timeout.”

Despite the slow start, the Atoms were able to fight back and cut the deficit to eight points at halftime.

“We changed to our zone press which got us turnovers and easy buckets, which is what you need to go on a run like that,” Harper said. “Senior leadership from players like D’Angelo Boyce also helped because he really began to take over the game.”

Boyce finished with a game-high 27 points, while fellow senior Melvin Robinson was the only other Atoms player in double figures with 14 points.

“The intensity was there [the whole game] but the defense wasn’t,” senior Melvin Robinson said.

Boyce leads the Atoms with an average of 18.3 points per game. Robinson averages 13.3 per game and fellow senior Ronnie McCoy averages 11.3 points. Sophomore Sanar Shamdeen rounds out the leading scorers with 11.0 points per game.

The offensive production should improve for the Atoms with the return of senior Karl Ziegler, who has sat out the first three games of the season with a fracture in his foot. Last year, Ziegler was the leading scorer for the team and is expected to begin practicing this week.

“[Getting Ziegler back] will help tremendously,” Harper said. “He’s a very important part of this team. Not only will [opposing] teams have to worry about D’Angelo and Melvin, but also him because he’s a big offensive threat. Defensively, [he’ll help because] he can match up well with the better players on other teams.”

The Atoms have high hopes this year, with eight seniors on the team.

“We want to win the District Championship and then get past the semi-finals [of regionals],” Robinson said.

With the return of Ziegler, the Atoms will be in good position to achieve these goals.