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The Carroll Times

The Carroll Times

Carroll’s young varsity boys basketball squad wins first two non-conference contests

The team plays at home 6 p.m. Tuesday
Carrolls young varsity boys basketball squad wins first two non-conference contests

In the third quarter of Archbishop Carroll’s varsity boys basketball battle against Washington, D.C.’s Dunbar High School on Sunday, the Crimson Tide tied the Patriots for the first time. During the fourth quarter, the Tide took the lead from the Pats for the first time. During neither of those moments did Patriots head coach Francis Bowe call a timeout. Instead, the Pats coach showed his trust in his young squad. 

Following both occasions, the Pats rebounded and the young Carroll club was back on another run, seemingly in a better spot than it had been before. Carroll went on to defeat Dunbar, 64-58.

“Coach Bowe is doing a fantastic job of letting me be a leader, and letting us grow, and letting us make mistakes,” said sophomore guard Ian Williams following the win at the James Hampton Classic in Washington, D.C. “Even if we were to lose that game, hypothetically, he would trust us and be satisfied with my decisions by leaving me in there and keeping my group together and just us staying connected as a unit.”

In the fourth quarter, following the Patriot’s second lapse on defense, it was Williams who got a huge steal and converted the bucket on the other end to grab a 49-48 lead. That lead wouldn’t be surrendered for the rest of the afternoon. 

Williams, Carroll’s only returning starter and full-time varsity player from last season, has become the unofficial leader of a squad that consists solely of freshmen and sophomores. The guard has led the Patriot’s offense through their first two games of the season, directing traffic from the point guard spot while also filling up the stat sheet with promising numbers. 

Led by Williams and the freshmen duo of guard Darrell Davis and forward Munir Greig, the Pats pulled away from the Tide in the closing minutes to take a commanding lead and put the game out of Dunbar’s reach. 

Davis and Greig, who were highly touted first-year prospects for the Pats, have contributed at a high level through two games. Both have established themselves as everyday starters and solidified themselves as cornerstones of this young Carroll club.

Freshman guard Davis, in particular, led his team with 16 points in Friday night’s win over Brooklyn Colligate while playing lockdown defense on the other end. During Sunday’s contest, Davis put on a clinic on both ends of the floor, and even after missing nearly the entire second quarter, he came to lead his team in scoring while also being named “showcase MVP.”

Coming into the year with a young varsity squad, the Pats were expected to have hiccups and see a lot of learning opportunities. Bowe has shown his team that his lessons to them are just as valuable as the ones they’ll learn themselves on the court. 

“I feel good about these guys, man, because these guys have never been around environments like this,” Bowe said. “I’m thrilled. Dunbar is a tough team with a lot of pride and we played them well. I can’t complain. They just bounce back and get the win.”

The Pats did have a tough act to follow. Returning to action after a 65-36 win over Brooklyn Collegiate on Friday night could have led to a letdown for the Pats, especially considering the travel accommodations the team had to make heading down to the nation’s capital early Sunday morning. 

Despite the doubts, Carroll came out on fire. The Pats took a 10-0 lead to open the ballgame and proceeded to maintain a large margin through the first half and into the third quarter. Dunbar would make a couple of futile attempts at a comeback throughout the first half but failed as the fouls piled up for the Crimson Tide. 

Finally, as the third quarter waned, the Tide would bring the game to a stalemate for the first time at 37-37 with about four minutes to go in the period. The game-tying bucket was followed up by a 9-0 Carroll run that saw big buckets from Greig, Davis, and sophomore forward Luca Foster. 

Though Dunbar did come back to take its first and only lead of the day about halfway through the first period, the collection of Williams, Greig, Foster, and Davis fueled the offense through the final minutes of the contest, combining for the team’s final 15 points and slowly burying Dunbar as the clock ticked down. 

“Every scenario, every situation, we’re gonna play better and better and better,” Bowe said. “Are there going to be some hiccups down the road? Yeah. But what I can tell you right now is they’re going to learn from their mistakes and grow from them. We’ve done it every practice, scrimmage, to game now and that’s why we’re 2-0.”

With the win, the Patriots advance to 2-0 (0-0 PCL) on the young season, and will look ahead to their home opener against Conrad Science High School of Delaware on Tuesday at 6 P.M. in the East Gym.

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