Boys blow by 2 foes

Published 10:01 am Thursday, December 6, 2018

Davie’s varsity boys basketball team missed 27 of 30 3-point attempts against Rockingham County. It missed 15 of 19 treys against West Rowan.

Those numbers are obviously a great deal below its standards, yet Davie beat Rockingham by 17 and West Rowan by 41. The optimist would say, “Look out when the War Eagles get warmed up.” The pessimist would counter, “We might be in trouble when we face stellar competition.”

Coach Mike Absher is a believer: “We’re still not shooting it the way we’re capable, but it’ll come.”

The Falcons’ in-your-face defense created a choppy flow in the first quarter. Off the opening tip, Brooks Johnson broke a trap and found Jacob Hendrix for a layup and 2-0 lead. It quickly became disjointed on both ends. Davie’s next field goal came at 3:55 in the first when Zach Smith cut to the hole and scored on a pass from Johnson for a 4-2 lead. Davie shot 28 percent for the quarter but still managed a 9-7 lead.

“They were high speed, high energy and all over the place, and we couldn’t slow ourselves down enough,” Absher said. “I give them credit for that.”

In the second quarter, the game turned hard and fast in Davie’s favor. Davie scored all 23 points in the quarter, led 32-7 at halftime and cruised 63-22 over the visiting Falcons on Nov. 27.

The 0-2 Falcons are in a serious rebuild. They opened with an 82-35 loss to Lake Norman.

Davie made 10 of 18 shots in the second quarter and 13 of 22 in the second half. They hit 50 percent for the game, thanks to 23-of-35 accuracy from two-point range.

Hendrix led with 10 points, hitting 5 of 7 shots and adding five blocks. “He has really good timing and he’s got long arms,” Absher said. “He doesn’t give up on plays. A couple of his blocks were from behind.”

Johnson had eight points and six rebounds. Smith had eight points on 3-3 shooting from the field. Alex Ratledge had an identical line (eight points, 3-3 field goals). Owen McCormack had seven points and nine team-high boards.

Troy Griggs’ improvement since his junior year is paying dividends. He had another all-around stat line with six points, six assists and six steals.

“Troy showed good leadership,” Absher said. “He’s become a good communicator on the floor. He has taken ownership of the team and has all those traits that you want a good point guard to have. He’s really grown and matured over the years, and he’s become a true point guard.”

Ronald Wilson converted three of four shots for six points, and the big fella also controlled six boards. Noah Bohannon had four points, while Justice Redmon, Michael Walton and James Reid had two each.

The reserves were outstanding. Smith, Reid, Bohannon, Wilson, Redmon and Ratledge combined for 13-of-17 shooting.

“(Ratledge, Latham Chamberlain, Bohannon, Smith, Wilson and Reid) got us calmed down (in the second quarter),” Absher said. “With them out there, we extended the lead to double figures.”

Davie beat West for the fifth straight time and hung its largest victory since 84-38 at Forbush on Feb. 2, 2017.


McCormack’s sensational game lifted Davie to a 60-41 win at Alexander Central on Nov. 30. The 6-9 senior scored 26 points to match a career high, banged four 3s and rebounded with fury as Davie started 3-0 for the third year in a row.

It was the fifth 20-point effort in McCormack’s three-year varsity career. He had 26 in a 90-84 loss to West Forsyth on Jan. 27, 2017.

“Owen was tough on both ends of the glass,” Absher said. “He pounded the offensive glass really hard. He was a big key to limiting them to one shot. He played really good defense, too. He protected the rim for us.”

The War Eagles lost their previous trip to Taylorsville – 65-63 on Jan. 25, 2017 – and they found themselves in a struggle in the first quarter. The Cougars took a 13-12 lead to the second.

But McCormack’s 10 second-quarter points powered a 16-5 run that produced a 28-18 lead, and Davie rolled from there.

McCormack and Hendrix (16) outscored AC by themselves. Hendrix has been in double figures in all three games. Walton contributed nine, Griggs four, Johnson three and Smith two.

AC, which opened its season with a 56-47 win over North Iredell, fell to 1-1.

“They’re always difficult to get ready for,” Absher said. “You see the matchup zone and the Princeton-style offense about once a year. I was really proud of our guys because they did a good job of attacking. And that may be the best we’ve guarded them in a long time.”