After a promising start to the 2018-19 basketball season, the Ponte Vedra Sharks have now dropped six of their last seven games to fall below the .500 mark.
Slow first-half starts saw the Sharks dig themselves into a deep hole in all three of their defeats last week. The Sharks trailed by a whopping 20 points against Clay before beginning a comeback that would see the locals go on a 19-0 run to eventually catch and then surpass Clay, when Johnny Corlazzoli netted a 3-pointer to give the Sharks a 52-50 lead late in the game.
A couple of Clay 3-point bombs, including one of which was a fortuitous bank shot, however, doomed the Sharks’ gallant comeback effort as they fell 56-53 to the Blue Devils.
The opening game of the Fortegra 9:12 tournament at Episcopal also saw the Sharks trailing by 14 points at the half-time break. Again, the Sharks would mount one of their patented second-half comebacks, pulling to within two points of host Episcopal late in the contest, only to see their efforts go for naught in a 51-47 loss.
The Sharks were able to salvage one game during a week that saw the Sharks play four games over a five-day stretch, when they defeated Orange Park 51-45 on Friday afternoon.
The Sharks, however, reverted back to their previous habit of slow starts in their final tournament contest against First Coast, trailing by 18 points at halftime. The Sharks again mounted a late comeback, but it was too little too late. Outscoring First Coast by 10 points in the final quarter, the Sharks made the final score of 54-47 look more respectable.
Seniors Ben Houser, Reese Russi and Luke Martin have dominated Shark scoring all season, and it was very evident this past week when the trio scored 149 of the 198 points tallied during the four-game stretch.
The Sharks fell to Providence 77-33 on Tuesday. The game against Menendez on Wednesday night took place after the Recorder went to the printer. After hosting Menendez, the Sharks will take the short jaunt over to Creekside to take on the Knights on Thursday night.
Following the Dec 20 contest at Creekside, the Sharks will have about a three-week break until resuming play on Jan. 8 when they have a rematch at Clay.