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Colonial Beach edges Chargers in overtime

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Middlesex guard Brett Carter drives for 2 of his 14 points in the Chargers’ 67-62 overtime loss to Colonial Beach Monday. (Photo by Tom Chillemi)
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Middlesex forward Ryheem Lockley floats past a Colonial Beach defender to score 2 of his game-high 22 points in Monday’s loss to Colonial Beach. (Photo by Tom Chillemi)

by Tom Hardin

Colonial Beach scored the last 10 points of the game to grab a 67-62 overtime win over Middlesex in a boys varsity basketball clash Monday night at MHS in Saluda.

It was a game of momentum shifts. The Chargers of first-year head coach Chris Walker led 24-17 at the half, but were outscored 23-8 in the third quarter to fall behind 40-32. MHS regrouped and tied the game 57-57 at the end of regulation.

In the overtime, the Chargers scored the first 5 points to take a 62-57 lead, but the Drifters then reeled off 10 straight points to pull out the win. “We had some costly fouls and turnovers that allowed Colonial Beach to win the game,” said Coach Walker.

Walker was pleased with the way the Chargers played in the first half. “We were patient and took quality shots,” he said.

Walker said he also was pleased with the way his team fought back to tie the game in the fourth quarter. 

Ryheem Lockley  led Middlesex with 22 points, Brett Carter and TJ Balderson each had 14, JD Diggs contributed 7, Kaleb Wake had 4, and Greg Robinson added 1.

New Coach
Chris Walker was an assistant coach to Patrick Weller at Buffalo Gap last year. Weller was the Chargers’ head coach for two years (2009-10, 2010-11), and Walker was the Middlesex JV coach and assistant varsity coach under Weller in 2010-11.

Walker replaces Brody Jackson, who coached the Chargers to a 12-9 record in 2011-12.

“When the head coaching job came open at Middlesex, I jumped at the opportunity to coach here,” said Walker, who is from King William.

Walker also teaches special education at MHS.

2012-13 Chargers
Middlesex has won three straight Tidewater District championships and should be a contender this year as well. Ryheem Lockley (6’4”) returns for his senior season and is a co-captain along with senior guard JD Diggs (5’8”).

Lockley is a 2-time All-State, 3-time All-Region and 3-time All-District performer who has led the Chargers in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots for three straight years. He can score inside and outside and play any position on the court.

Diggs started several games last year and is a strong defender and rebounder. “JD is a natural leader and he helps keep the team motivated and on the same page while on the court,” said Walker.

Starting in the backcourt with Diggs is junior Brett Carter (5’10”) who came on strong at the end of last season. “Brett has improved every year and is a good outside shooter who can also take the ball to the basket,” said Walker.

At the forwards are seniors Timothy Balderson (6’4”) and Cullen Johnson (6’2”). “Timothy is a big presence inside and a strong rebounder,” said Walker, “and Cullen can hit the mid-range jumper and understands the game well.”

Other senior team members are guard Bryant Gresham and forward Zach Belcher. Walker said Gresham is a good ball handler and Belcher is a strong rebounder.

Other junior team members are guards Gregory Robinson and Brandon Sjolie and forward Kaleb Wake. Guard Andre Campbell is the only sophomore on the team. Walker said he expects to get positive minutes on the court from all of his players as they compete for playing time.

Walker said the Chargers are flexible in the way they will play offense and defense. “I’m trying to put players in a position on the court where they can be successful. We stress working for the good shot and having everyone on the court get touches. We can play up tempo, or from a half-court set, and we can play both man-to-man and zone defense. And, if needed, we can also press.”

The Chargers had a good turnout of fans for Monday’s season opener against Colonial Beach. “I look forward to the community coming out and supporting us,” said Walker.

The Chargers will visit Northumberland on Friday, November 30; will host Essex on Monday, December 3; and will host Lancaster on Wednesday, December 5. JV games begin at 6 p.m. and are followed by varsity games at 7:30 p.m.

Middlesex opens Tidewater District play at home on Thursday, January 3, against King William.

posted 11.28.2012

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