Every time the visiting Edgewood boys basketball team made a run to get closer to C. Milton Wright on Tuesday, the No. 5 Mustangs' depth showed up to spoil any comeback plans.
The home team got points from nine players with a number of them stepping up at key times. Senior guard Corey Bays was the biggest contributor, scoring a team-high 25 points as C. Milton Wright claimed a 78-62 win over the Rams in Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference play.
The Mustangs (13-1) improve to 5-0 in UCBAC's Chesapeake Division. Edgewood, which has been without three starters the past three games, falls to 9-4 overall and 4-1 in league play.
After a subpar first quarter and a slow start to the second quarter, which helped the Rams build a 22-15 lead, the Mustangs challenged themselves to attack the basket and tighten on defense. They outscored the Rams 26-10 over the final 6:54 of the half to take hold of the game with a 41-32 halftime advantage that grew in the second half.
Sophomore guard Brett Lindsey opened the run with two baskets; senior guard Malik Jackson was good for seven straight points later and Bays had 10 in the take-charge quarter with collective team defense also making an impact.
"Our guard play is very good, so we're very steady with the ball and we have a lot of different shooters, so we're able to spread the floor and open a lot of lanes," said Bays, who was honored before the game for becoming the program's fifth 1,000-point scorer. "That's what we did in the second quarter — we stopped settling and started going to the basket. When we did, it also opened up some 3 point shots."
The Rams, who got a game-high 29 points from David Velasquez, did all they could to rally in the second half, but could only get within eight points — 58-50 with 6:14 to play — before the Mustangs pulled away.
Senior Dante Brown also reached double figures with 13 for the Mustangs, who got seven or more points from four others.
Bays was an important part of last year's region champion team.
"There's definitely a lot of similarities," he said. "We know the pressure we have on us, we know we have the bull's-eye on us, so we got to come out and give it our all every game. Like last year, when we started winning a lot, a lot of teams started coming at us. This year, we've accepted that and we realize we've got to bring it."
For Edgewood, junior Tyrone Mckisset scored 15 points.
5 C. Milton Wright 78, Edgewood 62
E–Velasquez 29, Burgess 7, Mcgraw 3, Mckisset 15, Harrison 5, Arnold 2, Hooper 1. Totals: 22 7-14 62.
CMW–Bays 25, Sampson 4, Lorenzo 7, Harkins 5, Lindsey 7, Brown 13, Jackson 7, Bailey 8, Husain 2. Totals: 29 12-19 78. Half: CMW, 41-32