December 9, 2023 – Davidson-Davie had the offense firing on all cylinders Saturday afternoon inside the friendly confines of Brinkley Gym. The STORM surpassed the century mark for the fourth time this season, surging to a 120-86 victory over visiting Southwest Virginia. Now 5-1 in conference play, Davidson-Davie moves its overall record to 10-1, as they recently climbed to No. 2 in the NJCAA Division II national poll.
A hot start had the STORM firmly in control for much of the afternoon. The Flying Eagles did hang around at times, but never posed a serious threat to get the game into single digits. Forward Trey Fields was a catalyst in the sizzling first-half performance. The sophomore has slowly been working himself back into game shape after a knee injury in the offseason. Fields flashed his potential with a breakout first half, netting 17 of his 21 points. He was one of six STORM players to reach double figures in scoring.
Davidson-Davie totaled the first seven points and flirted with a double-digit advantage just a few minutes in. Fields’ driving layup stretched the lead to nine, and Tyler Johnson made it 24-13 seconds later. The Eagles would not get back within single digits for the rest of the game. Fields remained hot, bottoming a trio of 3-pointers including one at the halftime buzzer. An 11-0 run midway through the first half had the STORM in command at 45-19. The last Fields triple was part of a closing 11-2 spurt that secured a 68-42 advantage.
“I hope games like this will continue for Trey,” said STORM head coach Matt Ridge. “He is so talented, and sometimes I think kids coming off injuries, struggle between their ears instead of the physical side of it. I was glad to see Trey play like he is capable because we know how talented he is.”
Davidson-Davie did have some breakdowns defensively second half, specifically allowing Southwest Virginia guard Jaden Lyles entry into the paint for easy buckets. Lyles wound up with 25 points to lead all scorers in the contest.
But the defense of the STORM was still really good. They forced 22 turnovers and scored 31 points from them. A dozen of those turnovers were steals that often wound up being fastbreak layups at the other end.
Nygie Stroman had a couple of those, as the sophomore forward dumped in 16 of his team-leading 24 points in the second half. Others reaching double figures for the STORM were Frank Stockton (12 points), Aden Taylor (12 points), Baron Williams (11 points), Jakob Moore (10 points). Johnson had 12 rebounds with Williams and Ethan English dishing six assists each.
The closest the Eagles (5-5, 1-4 conference) would get in the second half was 91-69 with just under nine minutes remaining.
Up next for the STORM is a pivotal Region X showdown on the road against Louisburg College. The Wednesday headliner will be tough as the two teams battle for sole possession of first place in the league standings.
“That is a big game for us,” said Fields. “We talk about championships are won on the road, so we need to go there and handle business.”
The Hurricanes (5-5, 4-1) are led by Ronald Bridges Jr (18.3 ppg) and Ayinde Taylor (15.4 ppg).
“We know coach (Bryan) Bagwell will have those guys ready,” said Ridge. “I have to make sure I prepare as a coach on Monday and Tuesday at practice. It is going to be a huge game for us. We had better be ready physically and mentally.”