"It's All About The Game"

Stepping up helped Woodson over Chavez






Ron Bailey, Publisher

Ward 7 showdown didn't disappoint.


March 2, 2016 - Going into last night’s DCSAA quarterfinal playoff matchup with Chavez, it was presumed the Warriors of HD Woodson would rely most heavily on their pair of stars – junior forward Antwan Walker and sophomore guard Kiyon Boyd. Add Chavez’ relative lack of size, and any suggestion the 6’8” Walker and 6’5” Boyd would excel made sense.

Woodson eventually did prevail 63-58, but Boyd and Walker didn’t drive that train, it was other lesser known players such as senior guard Tamontae Chambliss and senior forward Joe Montgomery who led the charge.

Montgomery (12 points), also known as ‘Joe Rock’ was a first half force, scoring on stick backs and around the rim.

“I just played hard every possession” said ‘Joe Rock’ on his gutsy, aggressive play, in which 50-50 balls were his. “I believe in my teammates and my teammates believe in me. We just played hard”. He went to laud Chavez, noting “They brought it to us, but we fought”.

Tamontae Chambliss (5) made multiple contributions.

His coach, Trey Mines said of Montgomery’s scrapping and grinding “That’s what he does. I call him ‘Dirty
Work’. Mines shared Montgomery doesn’t necessarily like that moniker, but “Guys like that are the heart and soul of this team. Guys that make those dirty plays, I’m not going to say that other guys don’t make, but it’s not the first thing on their mind. It’s the first thing on his mind. Every championship team needs one of those guys”.

Chambliss (14 points) made contributions throughout, including his huge, NBA-range three pointer with just 3:32 remaining in regulation. The shot regained a lead for Woodson, one standing at 55-54. The Warriors would never trail again.

Mines indicated Chambliss “Definitely stepped up for us, hit a lot of big shots for us. Broke on that steal at the end…I had a feeling he was going to go get that one. And he did”.

He and Montgomery’s work, buttressed by that of senior point guard Clenteous McCoy (10 points) were necessary given Chavez constantly being a threat; Senior Eagle Greg Blaine scored 12 points, including two fourth quarter long balls, while junior guard Jacob Long scored a game high 22 points, most in the second half.

Long seemed to feast when Chavez, coached by Malcolm Battle, decided to go five-out offensively. The left-handed Long repeatedly drove in that direction while so deployed, getting to the rim and causing Woodson problems.

“Down the stretch, we kept running a little different zone. But we weren’t communicating well” shared the Warriors’ head guy, Trey Mines of combating Chavez’s spread offense. “I knew they were going five-out, we work on that every day in practice”. After a time out, Mines shared “I pretty much told them ‘You’re going to have to make them hit shots’", and for his team to rebound.

“This was a neighborhood thing, Ward 7 (affair)” said Mines on the familiarity these teams, which scrimmaged in the preseason have with each other. “These guys grew up with each other, played in middle school with each other…I think that also brings a lot of personal pride on the line as well”.

That Chavez (21-11) took his team to the wire was not shocking to Mines, noting when speaking of the Eagles and their head guy, Battle “They follow their leader. Malcom is a tough nosed guy. And that team is a spitting image of him. I definitely knew that team was going to come to come to play. They’re relentless”.

Battle's crew next plays in the St. James Invitational, a top level end of of season tournament, held in Hagerstown, MD, March 10-12.

Woodson, now owners of the DMV’s best record at 31-0, have a dream matchup against the WCAC’s Gonzaga, Thursday evening. Many around the program have surmised if the Northeast-situated, DCPS institution competed against WCAC squads, the results would have been favorable.

“Now you have your chance” Mines told his team in the locker room, before challenging them to lock in on the prize at hand – a berth in this year’s DCPSAA finals, and possibly a state title.

Be sure to get your popcorn, it should be a keeper.

Recruiting Update:

Tamontae Chambliss - 6'1", 170 pound senior point guard, HD Woodson (DC) - A set up point guard, Chambliss competes on the floor. He has heart.

His jumper is improving, but needs to be further worked on. Must also get stronger.

A four year starter, Chambliss was being scouted by William Bland CC last night.

Joe Montgomery - 6'3", 180 pound senior forward, HD Woodson (DC) - Think junkyard dog when discussing Montgomery, a guy that defends, rebounds and scores in the paint.

Must work on his ball handling. Folks in the know say he's a fairly good shooter, but that can be improved also.

William Bland CC is scouting him.

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