East Rockingham routs Generals
QUICKSBURG – As has been the case through most of the season, Stonewall Jackson senior boys basketball player Korey Somers got his points Wednesday night. He even got some help. But in the end, it was too much of East Rockingham that put the Generals away, 86-48, in their final home game of the regular season.
Somers, who averages about 11 points per game, led all scorers at his home gym with 17 points, while teammate Nathan Miller added 12 and sophomore point guard Ian Pugh put in seven, but it was not enough to overcome five double-figures marksmen for the Eagles. Christopher Rogers collected three 3-point shots en route to totaling 16 points, Logan Shifflett had 13, including two treys, Logan Lam added 11, while both Joshua Idleman and Ryan Dovel added 10.
After all, the Eagles finished their regular season in first place of the Shenandoah District with a 13-1 league mark, 18-4 overall. The Generals dropped to eighth in the Shenandoah with a 1-12 district campaign. They are 1-19.
East Rockingham won its 15th straight game, during a period when the Eagles have averaged a 15.5 points-per-game winning spread. Already they had sealed the school’s first league crown ever. They are seeded No. 1 in Monday’s Conference 36 tournament.
Meanwhile, Stonewall will be the seventh seed in its Conference 35 event, which is scheduled for Monday. The Generals will play either Strasburg or Luray, depending on a power-points system. Luray hosted Wilson Memorial Wednesday night, while Strasburg was participating in the semifinal round of the Bull Run District tournament. None of the Rams’ games measure in the power standings for conference postseason play.
“We’ve managed to get that second person in there for scoring, but it seems like when one or two of our guys aren’t hitting their shots, they back off a little bit. When we beat Buffalo Gap (58-53 on Jan. 30), we had four guys in double figures,” said Somers.
Somers, Derrick Smith and Ryan Smith are the seniors on this year’s team. Ryan Smith finished with six rebounds.
Stonewall’s junior varsity had just plucked the East Rockingham junior squad 53-42 in the preliminary and perhaps the varsity thought it could pick up some of that magic, having lost to East Rock 84-44 on Jan. 2.
However, East Rock’s varsity put that notion to bed early. Stonewall trailed 11-8 with 1:19 showing in the first quarter, when the Eagles went on an 18-2 run for a 29-10 lead with 4:10 to go in the first half.
East Rockingham led by 24 at intermission and moved the count to 77-38 with about seven minutes left in the game. Interestingly, 10 of Somers’ game-high points came in the third frame.
“I felt like everybody was trying hard, but maybe we were trying to do too much. Maybe we needed to slow up a bit,” said Somers.
East Rockingham, which pressed off and on, had 11 of 12 players score at least a point in the game.
Stonewall was not the only competitor that the Eagles have dominated. Twice this season they have scored more than 100 points in one game.
“East Rock is athletic and skilled all the way around. They put defensive pressure on us and force turnovers,” said Somers.
“This was our last game of the regular season, but we’re looking forward to the conference. That’s the only thing that’s on our minds now.”
“It’s the same thing that’s hurt us this year. Kory is a great shooter who looks for his shot and expects to make it. We’ve just got to keep adding to that,” said Stonewall coach Patrick Smoot.