Of all the big contributions that Edison forward Tyvez Monroe made in Saturday night’s game against W.T. Woodson, the most important came with about three minutes left in the fourth quarter. With his team clinging to a five-point lead in a loud environment, Monroe had to help subdue a teammate who had become emotional after being charged with a foul.
“Use your head,” Monroe screamed at him, then pointing to the scoreboard. “Look at the score!”
This wasn’t about Monroe scoring or dishing or rebounding, all of which he excelled at in the second game of the season. It was more about establishing his identity as the team captain.
Monroe got back to work shortly after, making several key plays down the stretch – and fellow junior Isaiah Buck-Lowman provided the go-ahead points with 35 seconds left to lift No. 11 Edison to a 58-56 win over No. 18 W.T. Woodson in the Red Jenkins Tipoff Classic in Fairfax.
The physicality of the 6-foot-5 Buck-Lowman (11 points) caused problems for W.T. Woodson (1-2) all evening, and it came to a head with just a half-minute remaining, when the junior came away with an acrobatic offensive rebound and hit a fadeaway jumper in the lane to give Edison (1-1) the lead. The Cavaliers had several looks in the final seconds, including a baseline three-pointer from forward Tyler Wilson (16 points) that went begging at the buzzer.
“If they hit a shot, they hit a shot. But everybody did their part on defense,” Buck-Lowman said.
A night after Edison lost 95-91 in overtime to Robinson, Monroe called Saturday’s win “perfect.” It was a game that, unlike the run and gun style of the season opener, required the Eagles to grind late in the game on the Cavaliers home floor. He scored 10 of his 12 points in the second half, and made a key play at the top of the key with just under two minutes left, slashing into the lane and finding Marcus Brumsey Jr. for a layup. The team has just three seniors, including Brumsey Jr. (13 points), so Monroe saw his opening to make a statement as a leader late in the fourth quarter. He took it in more ways than one.
“This win is big because we are a new team, full of new players with a lot of scorers. We’re still trying to figure out how to work as a team,” Monroe said. “As a captain of the team, I gotta make sure my people are good.”