POWHATAN - With their first cycle through their Dominion District matchups complete, the Powhatan Indians, still winless after 12 games, will look to break-through in their second go-around.
“We’ve started behind in a lot of our games, we’ve kind of had some slow starts…we’re trying to earn everybody’s respect and…we didn’t do that tonight,” Powhatan head coach Ryan Marable said Wednesday after the Indians’ 77-39 loss to Manchester. But he did add: “Against Monacan and James River, the coaches came to me after the game and said: ‘Man, your team plays really hard,’ and that’s all we can ask. Those are the little things that need to happen in order to change the trajectory of the program here.”
Before Wednesday, Powhatan, by scores alone, had its best three games, finishing 16 or fewer points behind Monacan (62-47), James River (66-50) and Clover Hill (59-51) on Tuesday. Before that recent stretch, Powhatan this season had gotten no closer than 17 points when the final buzzer sounded.
The Indians also challenged Clover Hill late, trailing 40-37 after three quarters, but the Cavaliers sealed the deal with the help of 10 fourth-period points from Corrie Addo.
First-year varsity player Brylan Rather has emerged as a scoring leader for Powhatan, delivering 24 points against Clover Hill and then adding 12 more to lead the team points-wise in its loss to Manchester. But Marable is looking for more than just scoring from the junior.
“I love Brylan, he’s got a lot of talent – I think, you look at point totals and you think that he’s the leader of the team, but really it’s: What can you do that doesn’t come easy to you to help the team win? And…he’s new at this, he’s inexperienced in realizing that: I’ve got to do more than just put the ball in the basket,” Marable said. “The game is 32 minutes long; anybody can have success here and there. But are you gonna be just as happy about getting a rebound and just as happy about staying in front of your guy and locking down your guy as you are hitting a 3 or getting to the basket? And we know he can do that, and we know he can do the other things really well, too.”
It’s a matter of sustainable success, and Marable noted: “That just comes with experience and maturity, and he knows that and he just has to change that on his own to help his individual success become team success.”
Players who came off the bench in the second half against Manchester were able to produce; Carl Hess, Scott Wyman, Luke Buzzard and Michael Washburn combined for 10 of the Indians’ 17 points across the final two stanzas.
“They really did what we asked of the first group,” Marable said. “They came in and kind of had some success doing what we kind of game-planned for and what we’ve been working on and what the starters have had success doing in other games, but for whatever reasons just didn't put forth the effort or had it in them to really execute like we had game-planned for.”
Marable said that they’re not going to forget these last 12 games – “we’re gonna realize why we’re in this situation.”
“But until every single person in the program wants to change them – the results – in every single possession, then it’s just going to happen again,” Marable said. “We need to make sure we identify…and I think we have as a coaching staff…what isn’t working, and we just need to get these guys to buy-in to what works so that they can experience some success on the basketball court. We want it for them, but we can’t want it for them more than they want it for themselves, and nobody’s gonna give it to us.”
Powhatan will host Huguenot (10-2) this Friday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m.