Fast start takes Westover by Cavs
Westover rode a blitz of a start and hot shooting all night long to solidify its hold on first place in the Cape Fear Valley Conference with a 59-48 win over visiting Southern Lee Friday night.
The Wolverines (15-4, 7-1) entered the meeting ahead of the Cavaliers (9-9, 6-2) atop the CFVC standings because of their victory at Southern Lee in December. Using their home gym to full advantage, the Wolverines led 22-7 after one period and finished the night making 8-of-14 three-point attempts, keeping the Cavaliers at bay even once the opening momentum died down.
Westover ran and pressed its way to a big lead. Swarming full-court defense took the Cavaliers out of their game and resulted in a couple of four- or five-point Wolverine spurts in which the Cavs didn't get the ball past midcourt. The Wolverines led 29-9 early in the second quarter. Guard Alphonzo Josey had 10 points by that time, including two of the five Wolverine triples.
The Cavaliers found some success getting the ball into the paint and a three-point play by Damian Brown chipped Westover's lead down to 29-15, but the Wolverines still had a 34-17 lead at halftime.
Noah Mellette's three-point shooting display in the second half, as he drained four treys, kept Southern Lee within shouting distance. Mellette hit a three on the first Cavalier possession of the fourth period cutting Westover's lead to 46-35.
Three straight points, with a free throw then a hoop in the paint, by Justin McKinnon brought the Cavs within single digits, to a 48-40 Wolverine lead with a little more than five minutes left. The Cavs cut the lead to eight on a couple more occasions but couldn't get closer.
Josey led Westover with 17 points. Mellette led the Cavaliers with 15 points. Juwon Jackson had 11 points and five rebounds. McKinnon had nine points and six rebounds.
Southern Lee, which had a six-game winning streak snapped, has four games left in the regular season. The Cavaliers will host Union Pines Tuesday night, for an 8 p.m. tip, before traveling to Douglas Byrd on Friday night.