Top-ranked Lake Clifton survived its first major challenge of the season, turning back host and No. 3 Walbrook, 108-94, in overtime in a Baltimore City 4A League contest last night.
Senior point guard Shawnta Rogers scored 36 points, including seven in overtime, to lead Lake Clifton. Guy Butler added 22 and 10 rebounds. Travone Broadway led Walbrook with 29 points, and Anton Jenifer added 21 and eight rebounds.
Though it was the most serious challenge for the Lakers coming in, their closest game of the season -- a 73-71 victory over No. 16 Severn in the final of the Severn Christmas Tournament on Dec. 28 -- gave them a taste of how to handle a tight situation on the road.
Lake Clifton (8-0, 2-0), ranked No. 13 nationally by USA Today, did just that, outscoring the Warriors, 16-2, in the four-minute session.
"These two games are going to definitely help us down the road," said Lake Clifton coach Charlie Moore. "When you're able to come into someone else's place, score 100 and beat them, it can't do anything but give you confidence."
One player whose confidence was given a major boost was Butler, who bounced back from two bad showings, including a three-point performance against Mervo on Wednesday. Butler, a foot-7 center who transferred from Woodlawn, scored five points in overtime and finished with six blocked shots.
The Lakers also received a major contribution off of the bench from Dante Lemmon, who scored 13 points and had two assists and three steals. Reggie Frazier had 16 points and Ronald Byrd scored 10.
But it was Rogers again in the crucial moments for the Lakers. Going scoreless in the third quarter after scoring 23 in the first half, Rogers had 13 in the game's final 12 minutes.
"It doesn't get easy. The competition is there," said Rogers, who had eight rebounds, eight assists and seven steals. "We won't have any easy games. We're No. 1 and they are out to get us . . . everybody."
With 14 seconds left in regulation, Rogers tied the game at 92 with two free throws. After Jenifer missed the Warriors' second one-and-one opportunity with 13 seconds remaining, Rogers failed on a chance to give Lake Clifton the tie when the ball rolled in and out on the front end of a one-and-one.
Walbrook (7-2, 0-1) called timeout with five seconds left, but couldn't end the game in regulation as Carroll Watts' 15-footer fell short at the buzzer.
The Warriors, who led by as many as eight points in the second half and missed those two key front ends of one-and-ones, never recovered. Walbrook had six turnovers and scored only a field goal with 34 seconds left after five misses.
"We got away from what was working," said Walbrook coach Gus Herrington. "That has been a concern for me all year is trying to finish the game at the end. This game, hopefully, will show them that we got to learn how to take care of the ball."
Trailing 58-45 with 6:13 left in the third quarter, Walbrook scored the next 15 points to take a 60-58 lead. The Warriors led 70-62 with 53 seconds left before the Lakers scored the final four to close to 70-66 at the end of the quarter.
The Lakers regained the lead at 88-87 with 2:35 left in the fourth quarter on a tip-in by Frazier. After a basket by Reynolds gave the Warriors the lead, Frazier hit one of two free throws to tie the game at 89.
Walbrook went ahead by 91-89 with 2:04 left on two free throws by Jenifer. Rogers hit one of two free throws to pull Lake Clifton within one.
The Warriors had a 92-90 lead after Kevin Elliott hit the front end of a one-and-one. He then missed the second, but Carroll Watts got the rebound and was fouled.
Watts didn't convert the front end of the one-and-one with 20 seconds left. Jimmy Moore got the rebound for Lake Clifton and got the ball into the hands of Rogers, who was fouled as he streaked down the court with 14 seconds left. Rogers converted both free throws.
"They let us right back in the game," said Rogers, whose team faces No. 5 Southwestern and No. 6 Southern of Baltimore next week. "When they did that, I knew they couldn't beat us. It was over."