Boys Basketball: Stone Bridge Cruises Past Potomac Falls to Win VHSL Region 5C Crown

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Ashburn, Va. — When a No. 1 seed hosts a No. 6 seed in an 8-team playoff tournament, it’s usually pretty clear cut as to what the result will be heading into the game. However, that wasn’t the case when Stone Bridge High School hosted Potomac Falls High School for the VHSL Region 5C championship game on February 12 in Ashburn.

Entering the game, the No. 1 Bulldogs were red hot having won 7 in a row, but they knew they’d have their hands full with No. 6 Panthers, who are perennial state contenders.

Knowing they’d need to grab the momentum early, Stone Bridge used an 18-8 first quarter to jump out to a big lead from which the Bulldogs would never look back in their 88-61 win over the Panthers to claim the VHSL Region 5C crown.

“I’m kind of in shock; I never thought we’d be here,” Stone Bridge junior guard Jacob Thomas said. “We told ourselves going into the playoffs that we wanted to use our momentum to our advantage, and we did throughout the playoffs.”

Even as Potomac Falls turned up the defensive intensity, Stone Bridge was able to find holes in the pressure and distribute the basketball to the open man, so by the half, Thomas and the Bulldogs had expanded their lead to 37-20.

“Our guys don’t care who scores. If they get doubled, they kick to somebody. They’re content not scoring, and they’re happy for each other when they do score,” Stone Bridge head coach Kent Kling said. “They don’t care who succeeds as long as the team succeeds.”

That team-first mentality was as evident as ever in the region championship win as four different Bulldogs scored in double figures thanks to 19 team assists. Led by Thomas—who finished with 17 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists—Stone Bridge also saw double-digit performances from sophomore forwards Sam Whitehead and Domenic Duncan as well as junior guard Dylan Hundertmark—who also added 8 assists.

“When multiple people can score double digits and everyone can contribute, it’s really big in helping us towards that win,” Thomas said.

Defensively, the first quarter really set the tone for the Bulldogs as the Panthers never got into rhythm offensively, despite scoring progressively more points each quarter. Potomac Falls was led by senior forward Jacob Mancuso—who put together an 11-point, 13-rebound double double—and junior guard Kyle Ables, who provided a 10-point spark off the bench.

“Credit to Potomac Falls because they rebounded really well in the beginning of the game,” Kling said. “We just tried to stay compressed as much as possible, but then we were also able to close out on the perimeter.”

After hosting throughout the region tournament, Stone Bridge will go on the road to Region 5D Champion Patrick Henry-Roanoke on February 17 to battle in a VHSL 5A State semifinal. The winner of that game will host the VHSL 5A State championship game.

“Patrick Henry is probably going to want to run; we can run, but we can also play in the half court,” Kling said. “We know we have to play defense, and we’re going to have to protect the paint. In the end, we’ll just have to see.”

Mike Ferrara captured 140+ photos at the game!

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Stone Bridge Stats
Stone BridgePointsReboundsAssistsStealsBlocksFT
Jacob Thomas1787213-for-4
Sam Whitehead1730000-for-0
Dylan Hundertmark1648101-for-2
Domenic Duncan1010001-for-1
Cole DeVido961120-for-0
Torben Hart500000-for-1
Dayvon Faulk460010-for-2
Jerico Limcaoco413201-for-2
Alec Zabel310001-for-2
Michael Hafer210002-for-2
Kaden Limcaoco110001-for-2
Jonathan Dudley000000-for-0
Anthony Gonzalez000000-for-0
Totals8832196410-for-18
Potomac Falls Stats
Potomac FallsPointsReboundsAssistsStealsBlocksFT
Jacob Mancuso11132105-for-8
Kyle Ables1011100-for-0
Rico Brown911014-for-4
Aidan Apietu710100-for-0
Owen Copeland640100-for-0
Mark Delaney500000-for-0
Liban Farah430000-for-0
Aidan Carrillo410104-for-4
Jalen Jackson210100-for-0
Ryan Miles120101-for-2
Gavin Plunkett120001-for-2
Elijah Adegbenro100001-for-2
Nolan Levenhagen040000-for-0
Justin Opiola000000-for-0
Totals613347116-for-22
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Owen Gotimer has a passion for helping people grow and self-educate through new media. Owen spent his college years at Syracuse University, where he studied broadcast and digital journalism in the renowned Newhouse School of Public Communications. In his "free time", Owen volunteers as a varsity baseball coach at John Champe and is the president of the Jeffrey C. Fowler Memorial Scholarship.

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