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By Eric Clutter | Correspondent
Myles Wright and Phillip Maggard fueled a second-half rally at Crestwood on Friday night, sparking the Kent Roosevelt Rough Riders to a 58-47 Portage Trail Conference Metro Division victory over the Red Devils.
Wright (16 points) and Maggard (12 points) did all of their scoring damage following halftime, combining for 28 points as Roosevelt regrouped after putting in just three points in the second quarter to trail 23-16 at the intermission.
"It was a great team win," said Roosevelt coach Ben Dunlap. "Guys on the bench were helping on the defensive assignments and helping on the offensive assignments."
Maggard, a 6-foot-1 sophomore who splits time between JV and varsity, entered the game early in the third quarter and promptly posted five points. Wright, who sat most of the opening half nursing two first-quarter fouls, complemented Maggard's scoring with his first six points of the game to send Roosevelt to a 13-0 run to begin the second half and give the Rough Riders (6-14, 5-8 Metro) the lead for good.
Crestwood (6-14, 2-11) finally got on the board five minutes into the frame and eventually pulled within one point at the end of the stanza (32-31).
However, Phillip Grant, who contributed 14 points, sank a 3-pointer at the beginning of the final period to up the margin to four points.
Midway through the quarter, Anthony Stuber, who along with Jacob Graves, led Crestwood with 13 points, fired in a 3 to close the gap to 43-40.
Maggard, who also pulled down five rebounds, countered with a 3 of his own and Roosevelt maintained at least a six-point cushion the rest of the way.
"We're trying to find some time for him," said Dunlap. "P.J. is going to be a special player. We're trying to take baby steps with him. He is so important to the JV team. I'm trying to balance it, but he is a very explosive scorer, a fundamentally sound player. I was very, very happy for his success tonight. We have seen it in spurts, seen it in practice."
Wright, despite sitting for a good portion of the first half, narrowly missed a triple-double, rejecting 10 Crestwood shots and garnering seven rebounds.
"Myles doesn't like to sit, so I knew he was going to come out in the third quarter like a man possessed," said Dunlap.
Joseph Watts recorded 10 points to give the Rough Riders four double-digit scorers.
After falling behind 13-11 through the first eight minutes, Crestwood held Roosevelt scoreless for the first 6:47 of the second stanza. During that span, the Red Devils reeled off 10 straight points to take an eight-point lead. A Grant jumper in the final limit made it a seven-point difference at the half.