By Will McClure
It seems like the Stamford boys’ basketball team still had some “court rust” when they began their season against the Clyde Bulldogs last Tuesday, taking a tough 48-38 loss.
Stamford started off strong, with Ligon West winning the opening jump, quickly leading to a basket from Tanner Vance. However, Clyde fired back, keeping the game close with baskets back and forth between the two teams. Clyde kept the ball moving well, but failed to pull ahead thanks to strong Stamford defense, keeping the scoring opportunities to a minimum. However, Stamford suffered on the offensive side with Clyde making easy steals from attempted long passes. Although Stamford was able to maintain a lead at the beginning of the first quarter, being ahead as much as four points, a free throw and three-point shot tied the game at 10-10, with the period ending with the teams tied at 12-12. Tanner Vance scored half of Stamford’s points during the period.
The second period picked up where the first left off; with tougher defense from both teams and back and forth action. Clyde would continue to dominate in rebounds, but shooting was once again kept at bay, with Stamford holding Clyde to 9 points. Although Clyde would take the first lead change with 5:15 left in the second, Ligon West would bring the lead back to Stamford with a basket and free throw. Zai Zai Smith and John Louis Dyer extended Stamford’s lead with 2 and 3 points respectively to end the first half with Stamford leading 25-21.
Clyde stuck first at the beginning of the third, retaking the lead with a six-point run before being shut down by a basket from John Louis Dyer, which would turn out to be the only points from Stamford in the period. Clyde was able to dominate the ball, picking up easy steals from risky long passes and winning on almost every rebound, the majority of which after a Clyde miss. Clyde would rack up an additional 7 points heading into the end of the period, maintaining the lead at 34-27.
Stamford showed that they would not go down easy at the beginning of the fourth, pushing towards the basket and moving the ball effectively. However, Clyde would have them beat at almost every turn, holding onto their lead. Stamford was finally able to find a rhythm, however, firing back with a 6 point run with less than two minutes left in the game. It would not be enough as Clyde would ultimately stop Stamford’s momentum and take the win with a final score of 48-38. Although they had their problems on the court, Stamford showed their heart and soul by not giving up even when Clyde’s lead extended into double digits. The Stamford boys showed that they would not go down without a fight with John Louis Dyer leading the team with 12 points, followed by Tanner Vance’s 8 points. Even though it was a tough loss, it is only the first game of the season with plenty of time to work off the “court rust” and come back even stronger.
The JV and Freshman teams did not fare much better against Clyde, with JV losing 40-24 and the Freshman team losing 32-10. The JV and Varsity teams will travel to Roscoe High School on December 9 to face Crane High School. The JV game will start at 5:00 p.m. while the Varsity game will begin at 6:30 p.m. The Varsity boys will then compete in the Stamford Tournament from December 11 to December 13. The freshmen team is currently scheduled not to have a game until January 2, where they will face Albany at home in the old gym at 4:00 p.m. Come out and support your Stamford Bulldog teams as they look forward to an amazing season!
Stamford 12 13 2 11--38
Clyde 12 9 13 14--48
#1 Zai Zai Smith 4 pts; #5 Ligon West 7 pts; #11 Marcus Collins 2 pts; #20 John Louis Dyer 12; pts; #23 Lonnie Applin 3 pts; #32 Matt Medford 2 pts; #55 Tanner Vance 8 pts