In a “Battle of Route 7” basketball double header Tuesday night, George Mason and George C. Marshall High Schools faced off as the crosstown rivals’ boys and girls basketball on Marshall’s home courts.
The battle ended in a split victory.
Mason’s girls team won 59-44 in the opener, showcasing the talent that rocketed the girls to victory at the Virginia state championships last year.
In the second game, the Marshall boys team mowed down their rivals late to take victory, 69-60.
Familiar faces dominated the Lady Mustangs’ scorecard, as returning senior Nicole Mitchell racked up 15 points to lead her team.
Mitchell was followed by senior Chantal Thomas and sophomore Lauren Kane with 14 points each.
Sophomore forward Bria Platenburg was also back from last year’s team, adding another 10 points.
The Lady Statesmen were led by senior captain Carlie Zirkle with 17 points, followed by fellow senior captain Theresa Hackett with 15 and sophomore Maddie O’Beirne with five.
Victory wasn’t assured for the Mason girls at first, as the team lagged behind 28-26 at half-time.
The third quarter turned the tables for Mason, with quick power play from Kane, Mitchell and Thomas, racking up 23 points to Marshall’s seven.
The victory over Marshall, a AAA-division school compared to Mason’s A status, keeps the single-A Mason girls team undefeated so far.
The Lady Mustangs have won all three games this season, busting out with lopsided wins over Falls Church (58-22) and Gar-Field (60-33).
When the Mason boys took the court, the team looked to rebound following their 75-41 loss to Broad Run last Friday.
The Statesmen had also lost their last game, 59-50 against Oakton High last week, failing to keep up momentum in the second half.
Tuesday night saw both teams battling neck and neck, with strong plays from Mason’s senior Jordan Cheney with 22 points and freshman prodigy Aaron Young adding 13 points.
But the Mason boys proved no match for the quick-footed Marshall senior Stanley Watts, who buffeted the Marshall scoreboard with 32 points, taking game scoring honors.
Seniors Will Simonton and Daniel McClain added 12 points each, with McClain pulling down seven rebounds.
Mason led in the fourth quarter 46-44 with 5:40 remaining, but failed to sustain the lead.
The Marshall offensive was aided by senior Steven Zimmerman, and Mason’s sophomore wing Jeremy Stewart added 11 to the board.
Next up, Mason travels to The Seton School tonight, Dec.10, while Marshall hosts J.E.B. Stuart on Friday.