To say that Western Albemarle overwhelmed Deep Run is putting it mildly. An 18-0 scoring spree that started in the first and ran through the second quarter was the story of the game for the Warriors as they built up an eventual 24-point lead before the Wildcats snapped the run. Within that run was a substantial career milestone too, reached by senior Ryan Ingram. But as far as the game went, there was no recovering from the first half damage as Western cruised to a 62-43 victory without having to break much of a sweat in the second half.
“We played with great energy tonight, started off really fast,” Ingram said. “We played solid defense and I think that’s how we got out to that lead.”
In the midst of the Warriors’ 18-0 run was an individual run by Ingram to open the second as the senior scored eight straight including hitting a pair of 3-pointers, the second of which put him over the 1,000 career point total.
“It was a special moment and it’s nice to have it now so I don’t have to worry about it,” Ingram said.
When the Warriors made the Group 3A tournament last season with Ingram leading the charge, it was the first time since the 2009-2010 campaign that was led by Christian Pierce. Fittingly enough, Ingram, who finished with a game-high 17 points, became the first Western player to reach that plateau since Pierce did seven years ago.
When Ingram knocked down that milestone it put his team up 20-4 with 6:08 to go in the second. The Warriors went into the half up 34-12 and nothing changed in the third quarter. Western worked in its bench and continued to control the pace of the game and saw Chris McGahren take the lead along with contributions from Teo Rampini and the team’s lone freshman, Garrett Payne. As such, there was a 26-point lead going into the fourth.
“It was great to see the younger guys getting in there, playing well and giving our starters some rest,” Ingram said. “I think we’ll really need it for tomorrow, so definitely happy we got that.”
While Deep Run chewed into the lead a bit in the final frame, it was never more than a 19-point game which allowed Western to simply melt away the clock and distribute valuable playing time.
Western (6-2) will face Albemarle (9-0) on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m at Albemarle. The Patriots took the first meeting on December 9th, 58-51. This meeting will mean the two programs play each other at least three times in a season for the second consecutive year.
“We have to work harder than we did the first time,” Ingram said. “We didn’t play the greatest defensively against them so we’ll try and come out and play hard and fast like we did tonight.”