Thursday evening was quite eventful at the Comcast Center. Eleanor Roosevelt's Akil Charles hit a game winner versus reigning 4A champion North Point and Sherwood took arch-rival Magruder to over-time after Scott Bolen hit an NBA range -3 in the final seconds of regulation to tie it.
It was quite an eventful day at Comcast. We will break down both 4A games.
Magruder 75 Sherwood 68 in Over-time
Many thought Magruder would win this game with ease after defeating Sherwood twice by double figures during the regular season. Magruder would go on to win, but Sherwood put up quite a fight. The first quarter was fairly even. Magruder led 12-10 after one. Magruder began to pull away in the second and held a 28-19 lead at the half. The third quarter was pretty even, Sherwood outscored Magruder 16-14. The fourth quarter was a quarter that seemed to take forever. There were tons of fouls called both ways in the fourth quarter, that resulted in multiple players being disqualified due to fouling out. Three of Sherwood's top players were disqualified, Charlie Rogers, Brandon Loiacono, and Jourdain McCants. Two Colonels fouled out, Garland Owens and Cameron Royster. Magruder did not make a field goal in the fourth quarter and it was the very first time all season that Magruder was involved in a one possession game with less then a minute to play in regulation. In the final two minutes the team exchanged appearances at the free throw line. With less then 30 seconds to go Magruder junior Justin Witmer split a pair of free throw's and that left the door open for Sherwood who trailed by three. Scott Bolen would hit a 26 foot three with five seconds to go to force over-time.
JJ Epps carried Magruder in the over-time session, the same way he carried Magruder the last time they were involved in an over-time game. That game was in December of 2010, and that game ended Springbrook's 59 game Montgomery County winning streak. Epps was phenomenal, scoring the ball at will with his sneaky dribbling and ability to create space to get open jumpers. Magruder's Garland Owens fouled out in the over-time session so it was up to the underclassmen to bring it home for their star senior. That they did outscoring Sherwood 17-10 in the over-time session to walk away with a 75-68 victory.
The game's high scorer was Scott Bolen with 26. Charlie Rogers added 22 before fouling out. The Junior trio of Nick Griffin, Justin Witmer, and JJ Epps poured in 19,18, and 16 respectively to lead the Colonels. Nick Griffin went 11-11 from the free throw line. Magruder as a team shot 82.5% from the line, going 33-40. Magruder also shot an astounding 52.8% from the field for the game. They didn't miss a field goal in the over-time session. Sherwood committed only six turnovers in the ball game.
Eleanor Roosevelt 65 North Point 63
Many people didn't give ER much of a shot. Those people probably aren't familiar with the type of tenacious defense that the Raiders play. This was the third consecutive year that Roosevelt has made it to the Comcast Center. Roosevelt senior Chaun Miller is hoping the third time is a charm. Miller played a terrific all around game and was the game's high scorer with 17 points. He also grabbed eight rebounds and had four assists. But the night belonged to guard Akil Charles, who had 13 points and six assists and hit the game winner, an acrobatic contested lay-up with the score tied and .6 seconds remaining on the clock.
With the game tied and 30 seconds remaining North Point had possession and it appeared they would take it down to the final seconds and get the last shot so that either they would win in regulation or the game would go to over-time. North Point's Marquis Wright got a look he couldn't pass up and missed a 9 foot jumper from the baseline with 25 seconds remaining. After ER crossed half court they called a time-out and set a play up for the senior guard. Charles got an ISO on the right elbow and got around his defender. As two help side defenders collapsed Charles was already mid-flight and tossed in an acrobatic left handed lay-up with .6 remaining. North Point would not get a shot off and the Raiders walked away with a thrilling victory in Thursday's most exciting game.
Chaun Miller led all scorers with 17. Akil Charles chipped in 13 and Malachi Alexander Double-doubled with 10 points and 12 boards. Roosevelt shot 80% from the line. North Point shot 35.7% from the line. North Point was led by Tre Mouton and Naim Muhammad who each scored 14. Marquis Wright scored 13 points and had seven assists. Matt Bonds had 11 points and eight rebounds.