AM
Mavericks gallop past Generals
James Monroe (63) Vs. Montcalm (39)
Dec 15, 2015
By GEORGE THWAITES
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
MONTCALM — Playing opponents a classification above its head will probably be therapeutic for the Montcalm boys basketball team in the long run.
The medicine does have some short-term side effects.
James Monroe swarmed the Class A Generals in a 12-0 opening run to take the lead for keeps and the Class AA Mavericks galloped off with a 63-39 victory at Montcalm.
“We wanted to set the tone and make sure we jumped on them quick,” said James Monroe head coach Johnathan McPherson, whose team led 34-17 at the half, “Our defense created those offensive points early.”
No sooner did Monroe win the tip than guard Dominic Lewis had already run the floor for an easy layup. The Mavs pressed the socks off of the Generals with Lewis and fellow guards Lance Wilson and Caleb Spencer converting steals and forced turnovers into transition points.
“Oh it killed us. We didn’t get back on defense. We spotted them 10 and eight of them came off of the fast break early in the game,” said Generals head coach Matt Smith. “It was a breakdown defensively. We didn’t get back. We didn’t stop the transition.”
Lewis led all scorers with 24 points. He scored 12 during the first half and added another dozen in the third period.
“We all work together as a team. I played the kind of game I played tonight because (my teammates) kind of encouraged me to push myself harder,” said Lewis, a junior.
“We’re a guard-oriented team but we can do a lot of damage down low, too. We just didn’t really get the opportunity for the posts to have their chance, because we were really feeling it up top,” Lewis said.
Spencer added 11 points for the Mavericks (2-0). Wilson finished with eight points. Jalen Lewis only scored three, but contributed to the defensive mayhem with some key steals and disruptions.
“We’re more of an outside-in team. We’ve got a little bit of size but we’ve got so many perimeter players, that’s what we’re looking to do,” said McPherson, whose team shot 0-of-6 from 3-point range in the first half but got a trey apiece from Spencer and Remington Reed in the second half.
“The Summers game ... the first game of the year ... we hit 10 and it wasn’t just one person. It was spread out. So that’s definitely our strength,” McPherson said. “We didn’t shoot as well tonight, but I was glad to see us make up for it in defense and points off turnovers.”
Craig Casto scored 11 points to pace the Generals (0-4). Shane Presley added 10 points.
“We’re getting there. It’s frustrating at times. You start a freshman at the point and sometimes you have to deal with those headaches. But (Casto) has got to want the ball and he’s got to be the man that delivers,” Smith said.
“Right now he’s doing some things that we need to work through. But hopefully we’ll get him headed in the right direction,” he said.
Montcalm will be returning to Class A competition on Thursday when they travel to face Greenbrier West.
“It’s our first road game, so that will be a new set of challenges,” Smith said.
James Monroe returns to action Friday, taking on Narrows at the Narrows Christmas Tournament.
“We’ve got to keep progressing. We’ve got some senior leadership, guys who’ve played two or three years for me. So we’re definitely looking for them to lead us,” McPherson said.

at Montcalm High School
JAMES MONROE (2-0)
Caleb Spencer 5 0-0 11, Boothe 0 1-2 1, Wilson 4 0-1 8, Copenhaver 1 2-4 4, Lewis 1 1-2 3, Shires 0 4-6 4, Reed 1 0-0 3, Dominic Lewis 11 24 24, Havens 0 0-0 0, McMahan 0 0-0 0, Mann 0 0-0 0, McCormick 1 0-0 2. Totals 25 11-21 63.
MONTCALM (0-4)
Jenkins 2 2-2 7, Paynter 0 0-0 0, Janutolo 1 0-0 2, D. Parnell 0 0-0 0, J. Parnell 0 0-0 0, Shane Presley 3 4-5 10, Craig Casto 4 3-4 11, Coeburn 2 0-0 4, Farmer 2 0-1 4. Totals 14 10-14 39.
James Monroe...................21 13 23 6 — 63
Montcalm............................8 9 8 14 — 39
Three-point goals: V: 0 (Name 0); H: 0 (Name 0). Fouled Out
Nightly Roundup
Game Scoreboard
Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 OT SCORE
James Monroe 21 13 23 6 0 63
Montcalm 8 9 8 14 0 39
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