Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Chester Boys Basketball Rebounds Over Penn Wood

By Terry Thomas 

The Chester Clippers christened the newly named Fred Pickett Jr. Gymnasium with a 65-45 defeat of their Del Val League rival Penn Wood Patriots. With State Representative Thad Kirkland, Chester Mayor John Linder and Fred's family in attendance, Chester Upland School District Superintendent Gregory Shannon announced from center court to Fred's wife, Wanda, and the fans in attendance that "From this day forward, every rebound, every steal, every assist, every jump shot, every slam dunk and every win, and every win, and every win ... will be made here in the Fred Pickett Jr. Gymnasium". And with that motivation, a depleted yet inspired Chester Clippers team began their quest to win the inaugural game in their newly named gym. Chester played this game without two of their starters namely Khaleeq Campbell (season ending injury in the Neumann Goretti game) and sophomore Jamar Sudan who injured his knee at practice on Monday evening. Senior Keyonte Watkins got the Clippers started with 8 of his game high 22 points including two treys as Chester put 5 players in the scoring column enroute to taking a 19-14 lead after one period. Sophomore Ahrod Carter starting his first varsity game for the injured Jamar Sudan, dropped in five in the second quarter on his way to a young career high of 14 points as Chester stretched their lead to 5 points at the intermission. Chester - 34, Penn Wood - 29. Chester looked like the Clippers of old in the third period increasing their defensive intensity and limiting the Patriots to only 10 points as they pushed their margin to 13 points capped off with a slam dunk from junior Juanir Moore to end the third period on a 8-0 run and a score of 52-39. Chester continued their defensive stronghold on the Patriots holding them to only one field goal and 6 points in the final period. Penn Wood had no answer for Chester's height advantage with consecutive dunks by junior Maurice Henry adding 4 of his 9 points. Maurice finished with another double double hauling in 11 rebounds as well as rejecting three Patriots shots. Chester finished the night with 5 dunks from their big men. Juniors Maurice Collins (8 points) and Jahmi Bailey each finished with career highs of 5 and 4 assist respectively as the Clippers had 15 dimes on their 25 made field goals.

Chester will continue league play at the Fred Pickett Gymnasium on Thursday, January 8th with the Academy Park Knights come to town.

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