LaFayette boys improve to 12-0, beat Valley 66-56

Published 10:52 pm Monday, December 17, 2018

ROANOKE — And the beat goes on.

In the third and most competitive game this season between the boys of Valley and LaFayette High School, the Bulldogs pulled away in the fourth quarter to remain undefeated in a 66-56 decision.

Despite the double-digit victory, LaFayette boys head basketball coach Obadiah Threadgill said that he was frustrated by his team’s free throw shooting and defense early on in the game.

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“We play against individual teams instead of competing against ourselves,” LaFayette boys head basketball coach Obadiah Threadgill said. “We just do what they allow us to do. If we hold ourselves to a higher standard, we can fix some of this stuff. It’s still early in the season, we’ve got a long way, so I’m happy with the way that they played.”

LaFayette junior forward Matavais Burton scored 16 points in the effort, while junior guard Corey Boston added 15 points and junior Markevious Moore had 14 points for the Bulldogs. Junior forward Jordan Wallace also finished in double-digit scoring, with 10 points of his own.

Valley came out of the gates with a fiery-passion to take down the local rival LaFayette. Sophomore guard Kintavious Dozier led the way with 23 points, two rebounds, two steals and an assist for the Rams. Sophomore forward Jacquez Trammell added 13 points, nine rebounds, five assists, a steal and a block. Freshman guard KD Hutchinson also finished in double digits, dropping 10 points, four assists, three rebounds and an assist. Senior center Jaevin Tucker had 10 rebounds, two blocks and an assist in the matchup as well. The Rams kept the Bulldogs’ lead within at the end of every period and the team threatened to take the lead until LaFayette came up with a basket, and a turnover of their own.

“We played hard at inept times,” Valley boys head basketball coach Marshon Harper said. “If we can learn how to finish games, we’ve been in every game that we’ve played LaFayette. We had them on the ropes every game. It’s just that at the end of games, our youth comes out. We don’t do the things that helped us stay in the game, we don’t do the things that helped us come back in the game, we don’t do them at the end of the game. We turn into a whole different team, and you can tell.”

Following the game, Harper said that he asked Boston to come over to Valley’s locker room to speak some words of wisdom to the Rams’ young squad. A couple of seasons ago, LaFayette’s current corps was as young as Valley is now, Threadgill said.

“He told them the same thing,” Harper said, summarizing Boston’s postgame words to Valley. “You just have to keep playing for one another on the court. Why not encourage instead of discouraging another on the court. Why not tell them about a mistake, instead of fussing at them about a mistake.”

The result in the Handley Tournament means that Valley will face Russell County at 3:30 p.m. CST. and LaFayette gets an early look at rival Lanett at 6:30 p.m. CST. on Handley’s home floor.

“When Handley’s gym gets rocking, you cannot hear yourself think,” Threadgill said. “Those guys are going to be in front of us, we’ll be in front of them, and it’s going to be a jostling match for 32 minutes. We’ll see who comes out on top. Either way, both teams will win because we’ll make each other better. We’ll give the crowd a good show, I’m sure of that. It’s going to be fun, but we’ve got jobs to do, and we want to come out on top. It will be on of the best high school environments in the state tomorrow, and I’m happy to be a part of it.”