RICHMOND - The fun may just beginning for Altavista. The Colonels, a team led by four sophomores, captured the VHSL Boys Division 1 state championship 80-62 over West Point.
"It feels like a dream right now but I hope it sinks in," coach Mike Cartolaro said.
It's Altavista's second state title. The Colonels won it all in 2004 as well.
The quartet of sensational sophomores combined to score 71 of their 80 points. Juan Thornhill and Darius Johnson each had 21. Meche Maulbeck had 16 and Demetrius Johnson added 13.
The twin brother Johnson boys combined for 34 points and 23 rebounds, one day after combining for 20 points and nine rebounds in the state semifinals.
Inside play was a point of emphasis for the Colonels. Cartolaro said that's where they felt they had an advantage. They outscored West Point 50-16 in the paint and only took five three-pointers.
West Point's Jamie Wilson scored 26 points and made seven of the Pointers 12 three-pointers, one shy of the Division 1 state tournament record.
The Colonels took a double digit lead with 4:27 left in the second quarter. They took a double digit lead for good with 2:20 left in the second quarter and maintained a sizable lead for the duration of the game.
In the post game interview room Cartolaro also pointed out the importance of the seniors. He acknowledged that it can be tough for upperclassmen to not be able to play as much as the younger players but noted that Eric Poindexter, Josh Walker, and Jacob McCluer provided quality minutes throughout the entire season.
Altavista finished the season 24-3. All three losses were to Dogwood District rival Dan River. Cartolaro credited Dan River with helping the Colonels prepare for a run to the state title.
West Point finished 21-5.
Tune into ABC 13's Full Court Press show Friday at 11:15 p.m. for complete coverage of this game.