Chargers go out with strong efforts

Published 10:09 am Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Central High School’s varsity boys basketball team fought hard in its final two games, but it lost in both challenging showdowns, falling just showdowns, falling just short of qualifying for the Region 1B tournament.

“Unfortunately we needed to win one more game,” Chargers Head Coach Mike McGrath said. “We fell short of the postseason by 0.2 of a point.”

The Chargers ended a rebuilding 2018-19 season with a 1-17 overall record, but they also concluded on a promising note.

“We ended the season with two positive outings versus Nottoway and Cumberland in that we played well and gave ourselves a chance to win each game,” McGrath said. “We grew a little better each week and gained some valuable experience with players who had not seen much or any time at the varsity level before.”

Central lost 62-52 to visiting Nottoway High School on Feb. 5 and fell 63-53 on Feb. 6 to visiting Cumberland County High School, the defending Region 1B champion.

The 2018-19 All-James River District accolades were announced, and McGrath noted that Chargers senior forward Khalil Moore received honorable mention. He averaged seven points and 10 rebounds per game this season.

McGrath highlighted how the team featured a diversity of contributors this year.

“We basically had a different scoring leader in each of our games this season,” he said. “All the players played hard and never gave up in any game we played. Moore had four double-double games, and (senior guard Nehemiah) Wood had his season-high 13 points on Senior Night. Another first-year senior, Trey Patterson, came along well and contributed in quite a few games for us this season, especially in the latter part of the schedule.”

Looking toward the 2019-20 season, McGrath said, “It is my hope that the returning players work in the offseason to improve some part of their game. We hope to play at some team camps and grow stronger as a unit. We have a few spots to fill and may look to some (junior varsity) kids to step up for us next season.”