Landstown Completes Sweep of Tallwood

Conference 1 Tournament Championship:
Final - - #1 Landstown 45,
#2 Tallwood 40

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Down most of the game, the Landstown Eagles dug in
defensively and held the Tallwood Lions to just five
points during the fourth quarter to rally for a 45-40 victory in the 6A-South
Conference 1 Tournament Championship at the Norfolk Scope on Thursday night.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"It's always tough when you've got to sit your go-to
guy and he didn't play a minute in the second quarter.
style=> That's always a difficult thing and we couldn't
find a rhythm for a while in that second quarter.
style=> I always tell them as long as you play
defense, you've always got a chance," commented Landstown Head Basketball Coach
Dwight Robinson.
style=> "We never let them get too far ahead where
they were out of reach, so I felt pretty good at half going in only down three."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>That go-to guy, 6-foot-8 junior center and Player of
the Year candidate Darius
class=SpellE>Bolstad, didn't have a single point or rebound in the
first half while sitting on the bench most of the time with two fouls.
style=> He made his presence felt in the second half,
especially on defense.
class=SpellE>Bolstad ended up with nine points, five rebounds and three

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Landstown actually led 15-11 after one quarter of play,
converting 6-of-10 from the field.
Things changed drastically in the second period as the
class=SpellE>Eagels missed 13 consecutive shots before a basket with 14
seconds left in the half. However,
class=SpellE>Tallwood didn't exactly capitalize in gaining only a 23-20
lead, which they managed to extend to as many as five in the third quarter on
consecutive three-pointers from Isaiah Vaughan
and Tyler Peterson.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>The Eagles knew what adjustments they had to make, and
it mostly boiled down to making the hustle plays and being more aggressive.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"It was all about executing, getting rebounds and
playing harder on defense," said Landstown junior wing
normal'>Roderick 'R.J.' Nicholson. "It
all starts on the defensive end and that's what gets the job done.
style=> "This was just another game for us and another
day at the office."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Peterson, the Lions' leading scorer on the night with
18 points, tied the score with 57.6 seconds left on a three-pointer, the fifth
of the night for Tallwood.
style=> Landstown would answer by making 5-of-6 at
the foul line in the final 55 seconds, also aided by a pair of steals from
Nicholson and senior guard Brandon

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Since a 61-57 loss to Battlefield in the Sixth Annual Classic Presented by Cox Sports in a game where the Eagles
led by 10 in the third quarter, Landstown has reeled off 11 straight wins.
style=> No opponent has scored more than 47 points on
them during the stretch.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"That was a wake-up game for us.
style=> Big-time wake-up game," Nicholson admitted.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>For Landstown (20-4), the path to a state title in 6A
begins with a regional playoff home game against Kecoughtan,
the #2 seed from the Monitor-Merrimac Conference 2 with a record of 17-7
overall. Three of those losses have come
against Woodside, ranked #1 in the state in 6A and the team that
class=SpellE>Tallwood will open up against on Monday.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"We've got to be able to come out fast early and jump
on them real quick," noted Nicholson of the challenging matchup vs.
class=SpellE>Kecoughtan. "We kind
of waited around on Tallwood, but some games you have
that happen. In our next one, we have to
start off much better."

Player of the Game:
style=> Landstown SF R.J. Nicholson - -
Bolstad on the bench in the first half, Nicholson
served as a integral source of offense for the Eagles
with seven points. He ended up with a
team-high 16 points on 6-of-14 shooting, and it was his steal on the final
offensive possession for Tallwood that secured the

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I knew my role was going to increase and I had to step
up and get my teammates involved," Nicholson remarked.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Lately, the 6-foot-3 junior has been more of a factor
on both ends of the court for the Eagles, something that'll need to continue
for them to advance far in the postseason.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"The last Tallwood game and
this one, he's played really well," Robinson said of Nicholson.
style=> "He actually grew up with all those guys, so
maybe it's a little bit something about him that makes him rise to the

Keys to Victory:

- - Supporting Cast Rises to the Occasion:
"Verdana","sans-serif"'>To go with Nicholson, sophomore guard
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Nady proved
to be a major catalyst for the Eagles, not just offensively, but defensively as
well. Nady
ended up with 11 points, eight in the first half, and made 7-of-9 at the
free-throw line.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Off the bench, 6-foot-4 junior forward
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>Eric Watson made a pair of field goals
in the first half to quiet Tallwood's energetic
crowd. With Bolstad
held to single-digits and another starter finishing scoreless, those
contributions were critical.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I've said it all along that we're not a one-man
show. Even though Darius is our go-to
guy, other guys on this team can play," Robinson noted.
style=> "We've got plenty of guys who can put the ball
in the hole. When it was their turn to
step up, they stepped up. We didn't have
any doubt on who was going to step up, when they were going to step up.
style=> We've got full confidence in any of the guys
we put in the game."

#2 - - Clamp Down in the 4thQ:
of the trademarks of the Landstown program for many years as they've averaged
22 wins per season over the past five is their ability to make opponents
succumb to the various defensive traps and presses that they utilize.
style=> This year's team has some new faces on it and
several underclassmen filling integral roles.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Robinson was asked in December if they were close to
performing at the end of that court where he wants.
style=> The answer was no.
style=> On the year, his Eagles are holding foes to
44.7 points per game and just 41.7PPG during the 11-game win streak.
style=> Has his answer changed?

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"We're getting close.
Tonight, we switched up quite a few things throughout the game and we
were holding onto our full-court press at the end when the game was tight.
style=> We really wanted to speed them up a bit," he

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"They were looking a little too comfortable and we
thought they were a little tired. I knew
that we had a little bit fresher legs because we rotated more guys than they
did. We're not quite there yet, but this
is the right time to be getting there."

shot just 2-of-8 from the field in the fourth quarter.

#3 - - Value Possessions Late:
Landstown shot 0-for-6 from three-point territory,
they were able to prevail yet again by making their possessions in the fourth
quarter count.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"We don't concern ourselves with three-point
goals. We actually don't take that many
of them. Two-point goals are just as
good," Robinson stated. "What we concern
ourselves with is playing defense, rebounding the basketball and limiting our
turnovers. That's the name of the game;
the fundamentals. That's all we care

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>In the closing minutes, the Eagles did those things
necessary to win. They out-rebounded
class=SpellE>Tallwood 7-4 in the game's final quarter, including three
offensive rebounds from senior wing Xavier
Cooper. Additionally, Landstown only
turned it over twice in the fourth quarter compared to five turnovers for
class=SpellE>Tallwood in the last period, bringing their total to 15 on
the night.

style='text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Postgame Audio with Landstown
Coach Dwight Robinson

Final Stats:

Eagles 45:
style=> (20-4; 12-0)
R.J. Nicholson - - 16Pts. 6-14FG, 4-7FT, 5Reb. 2Stl.
Tyriq Nady - - 11Pts.
2-7FG, 7-9FT, 5Reb. 4Ast. 5Stl.
Darius Bolstad - - 9Pts. 4-6FG, 1-4FT, 5Reb. 3Blk
Xavier Cooper - - 4Pts. 2-7FG, 7Reb. 3Stl.

115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'> Lions 40:
(17-8; 9-3)
Tyler Peterson - - 18Pts. 5-16FG, 3-9 3's, 5-8FT, 5Reb. 3Stl.
Isaiah Vaughan - - 9Pts. 3-13FG, 1-6 3's, 6Reb.
Will Howard - - 5Pts. 1-3FG, 2-2FT, 5Reb.



115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";text-decoration:none;text-underline:
none'>Matthew Hatfield
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>
serves as State Basketball Analyst for
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, part of the
Network. Check out
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Hatfield's Twitter page
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'> for more sports related updates,
and you can also read his work in the
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Suffolk News Herald
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>.
To contact Matthew, please e-mail
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, and don't forget to listen to him
every Saturday at 10AM on
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plus watch him on the
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