Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Richwood boys off to slow start, but should pick up steam

By Keith Prince • kprince@thenewsstar.com

Beware of the slow moving Ram – Because it always picks up speed as the prep basketball season moves along.

The Rams of Richwood won just two of their first six games to open the current campaign, but coach Terry Martin isn’t alarmed.

In fact, the coach of the defending 3A state champs isn’t even surprised.

"This year is like always because some of our guys are in football through most of November," he said. "This year we have even more than usual (12) who played football, so we are have only had them the past 10 days."

By playoff time, Martin’s Rams, who defeated Vidalia 75-61 in the state championship game last March, will likely right back in the thick of the title chase again thanks to the presence of 6-7 all-state returnee LaDon Carter, several other veterans and some promising newcomers.

Already nominated for the McDonald’s All-American team, Carter is definitely one of the state’ premier players thanks to a smooth, fluid style that allows him to run the floor, shoot from anywhere and also be a force inside with his rebounding and shot-blocking abilities.

"We’ve had some good big people and LaDon is certainly up there with the best of them," said Martin. "He’s a big time player and he is working hard. We need him to help lead this team to reach the level we are capable of."

Carter led the Rams in scoring last year with 17.8 points per game.

Marceis Davis, a 6-3 senior, is another returning standout who contributed 14.2 points per game last year. He is also one of the many football players who is now working to get into basketball shape.

""Marceis is an all-around player who helps us in a lot of ways. He’s a true scorer inside and outside and when he gets back in the flow of basketball he will be one of our best," said Martin.

Senior LaDarrin Williams (6-6) and junior D’Andre Martin (6-5) also return and will be big contributors this year.

Others who will vying for plenty of playing time in Martin’s 8-10 man rotation include Anthony Abraham, Jamal Dial, Michael Hunter, Rakim Lumpkins, Akeem Ceasar, Lamaktris Alexander and Chad Clay.

"Right now it is difficult to read this group, because we have had so many coming in late from football. But there’s a lot of talent here and we should become a good, solid team. It really depends on chemistry and everybody working together to fit the pieces together," said Martin.

The Rams are again hitting the road for out-of-state tournaments during the Christmas break, first playing in Las Vegas Dec. 16-20 and then going to Orlando, Fla., for a Dec. 26-30 event.

"The competition is also outstanding and traveling like this is a good opportunity for our team to come together on an off the court," believes Martin.

Courtesy of the News Star in Monroe

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