Vincent Parks refused to call it a statement game for his New Manchester team, but its certainly can serve as a confidence builder.
The Jaguars defeated defending Class AAAAAA champion Mays, 67-50, in their Region 5-AAAAAA opener on Tuesday night.
It is the second time in as many games the Jaguars have defeated the powerhouse program.
Last season, New Manchester knocked off Mays in the region tournament to earn its first state playoff berth in school history. Mays would finish third in the region, but went on to claim the state title.
“It’s too early in the season to call it a statement,” Parks said. “Given that our expectations are extremely high, it is something that we can build on. By no means did we do everything right.”
The win improved the Jaguars to 3-0 overall and 1-0 in the region as Mays dropped to 0-2 and 0-1.
“This was a big win,” New Manchester junior forward Kyndall Golden said. “Their expectations coming into the game was to beat us.”
New Manchester was led by Makaila Cange, who had a game-high 20 points. Senior point guard Ja’Lisya Glover had 18 points while Golden had 12 points and freshman Hannah Wright had 10 points.
The Raiders, who lost their opener to Class A Greenville, was led by Tori Hill’s 17 points while Jade Bell contributed 11 points.
“This is another major win for our team,” Glover said. “I’m extremely proud of this team. This was another step towards our big goal.”
New Manchester controlled the game from the start. The Jaguars jumped to a 21-5 lead after the first quarter.
Mays didn’t get its first basket in the contest until a layup at the 5:39 mark as it was down 10-2.
It was a lead that the Raiders could never overcome.
Mays cut the lead to 14 points halfway through the fourth quarter, but could never get any closer.
“We played four freshmen, and they played very well,” Parks said. “I told the team to enjoy this win tonight, and then we have to get ready for our game on Friday.”