Oakland Mills and Glenelg hooked up for an old-fashioned shootout Friday night.
And when the dust settled, Oakland Mills’ size and clutch play down the stretch was ultimately just enough to pull out a 76-72 victory over a Glenelg team that finished the night with 12 made 3-pointers.
“I literally thought that game might go into the 100s at one point and it was just back-and-forth, back-and-forth … an absolutely great high school basketball game,” said Oakland Mills coach Jon Browne, whose team finished with six threes of its own. “As a head coach, I really didn't want that tonight, but I saw it coming after the Centennial win for us on Wednesday. Glenelg can absolutely shoot the lights out and they were exceptionally hot tonight. We really had to earn this one.”
Mamadou Ndiaye scored a season-high 26 points and Oakland Mills (12-1, 14-2) ended up with four guys scoring in double figures to prevail in game where there were 18 lead changes.
In the losing effort, Glenelg (4-9, 6-9) got 28 points from Dom Napolitano and 26 from Nick Oates, as the duo combined for 10 of their team’s threes.
Gladiators’ coach Jansen McMillan said he couldn’t have been happier with his team’s fight.
“They played with fire, they played with effort and they played with energy. That’s what they can be when they bring it,” he said. “That’s as good as they’ve been this year and I’m glad they found that tonight.”
Glenelg had raced out of the gates to a 14-7 lead late in the first quarter and 12 of those points had come courtesy of long-range shots. After Oakland Mills made a run to close the deficit behind Ndiaye and Larry Aaron (10 points), the Gladiators opened things back up again the middle of the second quarter.
Following an acrobatic lay-up by Garrett Mills with 2:20 left before halftime, Glenelg had its largest lead of the night, 37-28.
“That’s the best shooting team I’ve ever played against to tell you the truth. We had to lock up defensively, fight over screens, help each other … just continue to fight through,” Ndiaye said.
In those final two minutes before intermission, Oakland Mills put together one of its patented runs. Sparked by threes from Ndiaye and Naquan Williams-Day (15 points), the Scorpions went into the break on an 11-0 spurt to take a 39-37 lead.
Then, early in the second half, as the two teams traded leads, Oakland Mills stayed hot itself from beyond the arc. Williams-Day hit two more threes in the third quarter and Deion Graves hit one too to help Oakland Mills maintain a lead, 62-61, heading into the final period.
“Naquan went nuts and he was clearly in the zone, but we also got threes from Mamadou and Deion, so I think it was just one of those nights where the ball is just going in,” Browne said. “We were attacking the rim well and I think that might have opened up just a little extra space for us on the perimeter.”
But, as was the theme all night, Glenelg had answers for everything. Oakland Mills built two leads of six points early in the fourth quarter, but Glenelg continued its 3-point barrage to come back each time.
With 2:49 left, following a made free thrown by DeShawn Monroe, Glenelg was all the way back in the lead, 72-71.
“I told the kids at halftime, there is no way they could continue to shoot like that. But, man, I guess I was wrong. They were absolutely unconscious the entire night,” Browne said. “They were deep shots too. My hats off to those guys, they never went away.”
With the game on the line, though, Oakland Mills attacked the rim and got to the foul line. There, the trio of Ndiaye, Will Robinson Jr. (16 points) and Hopkins combined to sink five free throws in the final 2:23 to help secure the four-point win
Having just beaten Centennial in overtime on Wednesday, Browne said his guys were comfortable in those pressure-packed moments late.
“Every battle you go through, you hopefully learn something from it and you experience what it takes to win basketball games. That Centennial game certainly helped … it’s something to draw upon,” Browne said. “We’re definitely getting better in those situations and we obviously had to be at our best tonight to beat that team.”
Oakland Mills 76, Glenelg 72
OM (12-1, 14-2): Ndiaye 26, Robinson Jr. 16, Williams-Day 15, Aaron 10, Graves 6, Kiely 2, Hopkins 1.
G (4-9, 6-9): Napolitano 28, Oates 24, Hammert 6, Mills 4, Conners 4, Monroe 4, Wade 2.
Half: 39-37 OM.
Atholton 58, Mt. Hebron 43
A (6-6, 8-7): Willis 27, Rodgers 10, Mendelsohn 7, Carter 5, Kelly 5, Mason 4.
MH (8-5, 11-5): M. Smith 12, A. Smith 12, Trapuzzano 9, Madden 6, Bryant 4.
Half: 30-16 A.
Howard 67, Wilde Lake 35
Ho (6-7, 8-8): Green 19, Noble 13, Dawkins 11, Savage 8, O’Malley 7, Robinson 6, McNair 1, Skates 1, Okoye 1.
WL (1-12, 3-13): Cantwell 9, Barnes 7, Hill 5, DeLaRosa 4, Ichrist 4, Morgan 4, Stubblefield 2.
Half: 25-15 Ho.
Hammond 81, Marriotts Ridge 66
Ha (2-10, 3-12): Johnson 21, Wheatley 19, Wilcher 17, Whong 13, White 6, J. Thomas 2, Nicholas 2, Allen 1.
MR (3-10, 4-12): Clipp 30, Speelman 17, Talentino 8, Curtain 3, Whitacre 2, Beschner 2, Morath 2.
Half: 37-31 Ha.
River Hill 62, Long Reach 57
RH (8-5, 11-5): Thomas 31, Martin 13, Heitzmann 5, Sandler 5, Mitchell 4, Borucki 2, Desimone 2.
LR (6-7, 7-9): Avery 16, Carter 11, Brodnax 9, Clark 8, Duckett 8, Statimatides 5.
Half: 28-12 RH.
St. Pauls 56, Chapelgate 53
SP: Matsinye 20, Bare 13, Wilson 10, Ward 4, Lee 4, Brown 3, Kierson 2.
CCA (5-6, 11-12): Grandy 20, Frierson 14, Mitchell 7, Madden 6, Ball 6.
Half: 36-31 CCA.