Blues Win First Boys Basketball State Title In Program History

By 
Jonathan Schwab
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Saturday, Feb. 20 – The Parry McCluer High School boys basketball team won its first state championship in program history, defeating Altavista 56-39 in the Class 1 state finals on Saturday afternoon at PM.

The Fighting Blues (12-1) overcame a slow start, trailing 12-4 after the first quarter, to take a 17-15 halftime lead. PM picked up its offense and clamped down on defense in the second half and gradually pulled away, allowing the Blues to get all their reserves in late in the game.

PM junior Spencer Hamilton led all players with 17 points, scoring 15 in the second half, and added six rebounds and five blocks. Teammate Will Dunlap scored 12 points, pulled down 12 rebounds, and dished our six assists. Talen Roberts added eight points and five boards, while Ethan Moore chipped in seven points.

Stuart Hunt led Altavista (9-5) with 15 points, sinking four 3-pointers, while Marquel Dawkins chipped in six points.

For PM head coach Mike Cartolaro, it was a win over a school that he coached to four state titles before becoming the Blues’ head coach five years ago. Altavista’s head coach, Casey Johnson, played for Cartolaro at Virginia High School in Bristol in the early 1990s.

The Blues will graduate seven seniors: Dunlap, Moore, Roberts, Durham Baker, Aaron Plogger, Ty Ruley and Justin Wade.

For the full story and photos from the Blues’ run tot the state title, please see our Feb. 24 newspaper.

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