By Matt VanTryon Flyer Correspondent
---- — Bethesda Christian visited Covenant Christian Tuesday night for each squad’s boys’ basketball teams opening contest of the season. The Warriors’ defense stifled the Patriots’ offense, and Covenant opened its season with a convincing 62-36 win.
A pair of Covenant seniors led the offensive charge. Trevor Johnson scored 16 points on the night, and classmate Cody Owen scored 14 along with a game-high five rebounds.
Covenant coach Scott Flatt was happy with how the team played and hopes they are putting down a solid foundation from which to build throughout the year.
“The senior leadership is huge, and that’s going to be big for us as the season progresses,” he said. “Leadership and team togetherness and the bond that you build as a team, that’s going to be big.”
Covenant dominated the opening half, as they were able to force Bethesda into turnovers. Owen had six of his 14 points in the first half.
Bethesda’s offense was stagnant in the first two quarters, as they managed just nine points and Covenant took a 25-9 lead into the locker room.
Bethesda looked poised to make a comeback in the third quarter, opening up with a 6-0 run. However, Covenant continued to force miscues. The Patriots ran out of steam, and the Warriors widened their lead to 16 by the end of third. From there, the Warriors coasted to victory.
Bethesda coach Justin Cook said he preaches discipline, and the team’s run at the beginning of the half showed what the squad can do.
“The first five or six minutes of the second half, we really checked out well,” Cook said. “That’s a mental decision we have to make, not a physical one. I was really proud of their ability to bounce back. We need to string together 32 minutes.”
Sophomore Jake Mlagan had a game-high 21 points for Bethesda in the losing effort, including 16 in the second half.
Cook said Mlagan has improved since his freshman year, and has potential to make a long term impact.
“Jake has made a lot of progress,” he said. “It’s more progress in discipline and how he approaches things on the court. He’s only a sophomore. He’s got a lot of growing to do. But if he continues at the rate he’s going, he can be a pretty special player.”
Bethesda’s next contest is Dec. 5 versus Indiana School for the Deaf. Covenant hosts Manual on Dec. 7.