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Randolph-Henry blasts Bluestone in 2A West matchup

South Boston News
Chris Gregory charges hard to the goal for the deuce vs R-H. (Mike Moseley photo) / February 21, 2018

The Bluestone Barons varsity basketball team saw their hopes of a VHSL state title come to an end on Monday night in Charlotte Courthouse with a devastating 104-72 loss to the Randolph-Henry Statesmen in a VHSL Region 2-A West quarterfinal game.

The Barons had played Randolph-Henry three times prior to this game — twice in the regular season and once in James River District tournament play just nine days prior to this loss — and each time the Statesmen had Bluestone’s number. And such was the case on Monday, as whatever the Barons’ game plan was began to unravel quickly, in the first quarter.

Bluestone’s Patrick Alexander and Chris Gregory, stalwarts of the team all season, led the Barons on the offensive end, combining for 39 points on the night. Alexander posted 20 and Gregory had 19 in the loss.

R-H’s J. Jones, who had just burned Bluestone for 36 points in the JRD tourney game, also scorched them on Monday for 35 points to lead all players.

From the beginning of the game, Bluestone was in a hole. Alexander scored six points in the opening frame, while Gregory led with seven points. The Barons totaled 15 points in the opening quarter.

R-H on the other hand burned the cords for 28 first quarter points. The 13-point deficit was a setback for Bluestone, but not insurmountable, as the Barons had proven during regular season play that they could bounce back and win games.

But as the second period began, whatever adjustments Bluestone made at the end of the first quarter weren’t working. Though the Barons were posting points, they were few and far in between, while the Statesmen appeared to be on a mission.

Bluestone knocked down 16 points in the second period and got fairly balanced scoring, with five players posting scores. But at times Bluestone couldn’t hit an open layup.

Gregory, Alexander and Cameron Tucker had three each in the period. On the Statesmen side, R-H ripped off another 28-point frame for the 56-31 lead at the half.

Bluestone had 14 first-half team fouls. The Barons were 6-of-17 from the floor in the first and 5-of-25 in the second; the Barons were 1-of-6 from trey land during this time.

As the teams came back from halftime, Bluestone began to pick up some steam and play with more intensity and urgency — on offense and defense.

With 6:16 remaining in the third, Gregory sank a deuce to bring Bluestone within 18 points at 56-38. Even with the score, one could feel Bluestone was about to make a run.

Just as quick R-H called timeout, made some adjustments and came back to bury a trey for the 59-38 lead. Bluestone had its best point production of the night in the third, posting 25 points.

The Barons limited R-H to 17-points in the frame. R-H took the 73-56 lead to the fourth.

R-H finished off Bluestone in fine fashion in the final period, shutting down the Barons on offense and defense. The Statesmen again utilized a full court press defense on Bluestone, one in which they used just days prior on the Barons to great effect. Nine days later, the Barons still had no answer on how to break the press.

Gregory had 14 second half points; Alexander posted 11. Kwahli Hester had eight points for the Barons in the third, two of the eight being three-pointers.

Bluestone had a very production season, finishing in third place in the JRD with a record of 11-7. The team finished at 12-13 overall with an opening round Region 2-A win over Brunswick, 88-64.

Bluestone – C. Taylor 2, K. Hester 8, D. Pettus 4, C. Tucker 5, C. Hillard 2, J. Hill 2, D. Shearin 2, C. Gregory 19, P. Alexander 20, M. Harris 2, T. Small 2, N. Abernathy 2.

R-H – T. Roberts 8, T. Pugh 15, J. Jones 35, M. Benu 1, N. Pettus 27, J. Puryear 5, V. Moore 4, B. Brantley 7, C. West 3.

Bluestone 88, 
Brunswick, 64

Bluestone junior guard Devinn Pettus scored 18 points on Friday night in Skipwith to lead the Barons in a great comeback win over the Brunswick Bulldogs, 88-64. The win advanced Bluestone to the VHSL Region 2-A West quarterfinal round, which was played on Monday night.

The Barons had a very solid outing in the Friday win but after a somewhat slow start. Bluestone moved to the 4-0 lead with baskets by Patrick Alexander and Cam Tucker.

Brunswick had a deuce and a trey for the 5-4 score. Bluestone gained the 10-9 lead but relinquished the score with 4:22 left in the first quarter with Brunswick up 10-12.

The Bulldogs would have a decent frame and led at the end of one, 23-13. Alexander and Tucker had four each in the first.

Bluestone won the second quarter 16-15 and went to halftime down, 38-29. Alexander with five points led the Barons.

The third quarter saw the Barons return to the court and rip off a 10-4 run to narrow the Bulldogs’ lead to 42-39, with approximately 5:00 remaining in the period.

Brunswick moved out to a 47-41 lead before a trey by, Pettus and a deuce by Tucker got Bluestone to within one at 47-46.

On Bluestone’s next possession, the Barons’ Michael Harris had a nice rebound and put-back for the 48-47 Bluestone lead.

Pettus had six in the third period and some gritty play by Bluestone senior-forward, Walter Evans, Jr., resulted in five-points. Bluestone, with a 26-point third, led at the end of three, 55-51.

The Barons kept the pressure on in the final period, blowing the game open with 33 points. Pettus had eight, Cedric Taylor added seven, and Xavier Johnson and Kwahli Hester with four apiece.


Bluestone – C. Taylor 8, K. Hester 9, D. Pettus 18, C. Tucker 8, J. Hill 2, C. Gregory 11, P. Alexander 14, M. Harris 5, X. Johnson 4, W. Evans 6, T. Small 2, N. Abernathy 2.

Brunswick – J. Hicks 2, G. Johnson 2, J. Miller 6, K. Davis 14, M. Hicks 14, A Pleasants 6, J. Person 7, T. Jones 3, R. Gilliam 2, K. Booth 8.

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