Wootton Patriots upset Clarksburg Coyotes in boys basketball, 66-62

Wootton Patriots' Garrett Koch (#1) and RyanWarshaw (#0) converge on Clarksburg Coyotes' Corey Bullington (#1) as he drives the lane during the game at Wootton on Friday.  PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITHWootton Patriots' Garrett Koch (#1) and Ryan Warshaw (#0) converge on Clarksburg Coyotes' Corey Bullington (#1) as he drives the lane during Friday's game at Wootton.                  PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITH  

ROCKVILLE – The basketball gods were smiling at Wootton High School on Friday night.

True Johnson, a talented 6-foot-5 junior shooting guard, led four Wootton players in double figures with 15 points in the Patriots’ 66-62 win over visiting Clarksburg.

Johnson, who spent last season at Bethesda-Chevy Chase, has emerged as one of the county’s top performers this season, scoring double digits in nearly every game.

“This kid’s got potential to play at the next level at a legit school,” said Wootton head coach Erick Graves.

The Coyotes entered the contest riding a four-game winning streak; Clarksburg hadn’t lost a game since suffering a 14-point setback to Watkins Mill last month.

 “It definitely boosts our confidence,” said Wootton senior guard Ryan Warshaw, who finished with 13 points. “I don’t know if we came in thinking we were going to win or not, but this is huge.”

Clarksburg has also registered wins over Urbana, Damascus, Sherwood, Blair, Springbrook, Tuscarora and Frederick this season.

Garrett Koch, a junior guard, finished with 13 points and classmate Trey Wilson added 12 points in the win over Clarksburg.

Zachary Nannen, a 6-foot-4 senior guard, finished with eight points in the game and described the win as “very big” for the team’s confidence.

“Close game but it’s very big for us,” said Nannen. “Hopefully, it will bring us some momentum coming into this tough stretch that we got.”

Julian Levin, a 6-foot-6 senior forward, also contributed five points in the win.

“A great team win,” said Graves. “These guys have been working really hard. We’ve got five guys on the floor all the time that can score the basketball and you can kind of see that with our balanced scoring.”

Meanwhile, Clarksburg was led by seniors Alexander Behzadi and Stephen Armstrong who combined for 34 points.

“We played a great team,” said Graves. “Coach [Steve] Watson’s got a great group of guys over there.”

Behzadi, a 6-foot guard, finished with a game-high 18 points including five three-pointers.

Armstrong, who finished with 16 points, has scored in double figures for Clarksburg in all but two games this season.

Graves described the 6-foot-4 Armstrong as “strong” and “able to finish around the basket. “He’s a tough, tough matchup,” said Graves.

Clarksburg also received significant contributions from Corey Bullington, Diven Wallington, Raemond Thompson, Cornell Hanna and Kendall Smith.

After opening the campaign with a loss to Magruder, the Patriots have registered wins over Poolesville, Churchill and Sherwood this season.

The win over Clarksburg helped to boost the Patriots’ confidence heading into the homestretch of their regular season schedule.

“It just motivates them to keep moving,” said Graves. “The thing about the team this year, there’s a hunger in there. These guys want to get better every day they’re on the floor.”



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