Warriors Run Ahead In Final Minutes

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Broadwater’s Willie Holden pushes the ball up court as he ran the floor all night for the Vikings. Photo by Brennan Waldorf.

By Brennan Waldorf

Another close game came down to the final seconds in Exmore, when the Nandua Warriors edged out the Broadwater Vikings on the Vikings’ home court.

The Warriors won the tipoff and found success in the first quarter, using a full-court press. They built a 6-point lead by turning defense into offense, recording steals through the press and quickly turning them into baskets. The Vikings’ defense tightened its grip with 3:45 remaining in the quarter and didn’t allow another basket until the second quarter. They found themselves up 12-11 after Caleb Floyd sunk a running floater in the lane, and DJ McCaleb finished the quarter with an offensive put-back at the buzzer giving the Vikings a 14-11 advantage.

The second quarter began with Clay Wardius scoring in the post. Willie Holden then dribbled and drove into the interior, collapsing the Warrior defense and dishing the ball to Floyd for another 2 points, giving Broadwater a 9-point lead. Nandua’s offense was stalled and didn’t get much going until later in the quarter but finished strong going on an 11-point run. Malik Battle hit a 3-pointer and on the next possession delivered a dime to Gerald Pitt closing the gap 24-22. The quarter ended with both teams failing to score on their final possessions and the Vikings up 25-22.

The third quarter saw little scoring with Nandua back in the press and unable to attack the basket. The Warriors took the lead with 4:06 remaining after Gerald Pitt went coast-to-coast and Tremere Summerville made a layup putting the score 28-27. The teams traded basket but Nandua would end the quarter with a 3-point advantage going into the fourth, 34-31.

Nandua opened the final quarter with good ball movement, finding Jahiem Johnson for a layup. Clay Wardius was fouled to open scoring for the Vikings. Willie Holden then banked a 3 in from the corner and locked the score at 36. On the next play, Holden found Marvin Johnson in the corner for a 3 giving the Vikings the lead, 39-36. Nandua then used a timeout, and a turnover after the break saw big man Clay Wardius go coast-to-coast. The teams then traded baskets and with two minutes remaining the Vikings were up 47-42 after Willie Holden recorded a steal and turned it into a basket. Nandua’s Summerville responded with a deep 3 followed by a Pitt steal and layup, tying the game.

Broadwater had the lead in the final seconds after Clay Wardius made some clutch foul shots. But Nandua’s Summerville delivered the tying point by dribbling and driving, muscling his way between interior defenders, scoring with 14 seconds remaining. Nandua’s next possession saw Gerald Pitt draw a foul; he nailed both free throws, giving the Warriors the lead. With eight seconds remaining, Broadwater had one more shot and pushed the court but a low pass to Wardius was fumbled, giving Nandua possession and ultimately ending the game 51-49.

Broadwater was led by Willie Holden and Clay Wardius, each tallying 11 points. Marvin Johnson finished with 9 and Travis Northam added 8.

Nandua’s Gerald Pitt was the game’s leading scorer finishing with 21 points and six rebounds. Malik Battle added 9 points and two steals, and Jason Blake finished with 7 points.