In another epic installment of the George Mason High School – Clarke County rivalry, the Mustangs rode a smothering defensive effort to a harrowing 44-43 win over the Eagles last Wednesday night that snapped a 37-game winning streak for Clarke in Bull Run District games.
With 15 seconds remaining, sophomore center Jordan Cheney found teammate Anthony Andrianarison who laid the ball off the glass and in to give the Mustangs a stunning home victory.
Joel Chandler and Mike Straub led the George Mason scorers with double-digit point totals of 13 and 10 respectively.
The pivotal plays came on defense however, with Mason Head Coach Chris Capanolla crediting Jake Johnson and Andrianarison for their relentless work guarding reigning Single A Virginia Player of the Year Chandler Rhodes. While Rhodes was only slowed and not stopped — he managed 15 points on the night to lead the Eagles — it was enough to give Mason the edge it needed to win on its home court.
Clarke sharpshooter Joey Racer was likewise contained by Mason's Mike Scwhengel. Schwengel held Racer scoreless after two first-quarter three-pointers, he also poured in seven points of his own.
The win certainly serves as the season's foremost highlight for the Mustangs. To this point, high points have been few and far between for Mason, as the team has suffered through a series of injuries en route to mark of 4-10 (1-1 in the Bull Run District) entering the contest with the Eagles.
In the wake of the Clarke County win, the Mustangs reeled off another victory, this time downing Rappahannock County on the road last Friday, 59-41.
The Mustangs' record now stands at 6-10 overall and sits atop the Bull Run District at a formidable 3-1. The Mustangs return to action on Jan. 25 when they lock up with Manassas Park on the road. Mason previously defeated the Cougars at home 49-43 to kick off the Bull Run District schedule. Since that game, the Cougars have defeated both Strasburg and Madison County, though they will have not played in game conditions since January 16, after a January 18 away game against Clarke County was postponed to February 2.
Following the Manassas Park game, the Mustangs travel to Strasburg for a January 29 meeting with the Rams. Mason returns home January 31 to face Madison County. The Mountaineers are thus far responsible for the Mustangs' only district loss, a 49-39 decision on January 11.