Bel Air wanted to keep the ball out of Aberdeen guard Kashif Brown's hands last night. The plan worked nicely - for the first three quarters.
Brown took command in the fourth quarter, scoring 19 of his game-high 28 points to help No. 9 Aberdeen rally for a 72-66 victory over host Bel Air in an Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference game.
The 6-foot, 160-pound Brown was able to get into the lane in the fourth period much more than earlier. Brown often tried to create for 7-foot center Robbie Jackson (16 points, 14 rebounds), but instead found good shots himself.
"I just felt it, and it just started happening," Brown said. "I was penetrating to the basket to get the ball to the big man, but they weren't stepping off him."
Brown also hit all eight of his free throws in the period and finished 10-for-10 overall. That proved important as Aberdeen made just 22 of 40 from the line.
"He's so quick, and he's a good basketball player," Bel Air coach Nate Weigl said. "But he finally got open in the fourth quarter, and he started [making shots]."
Aberdeen (11-3, 6-0) looked sluggish for much of the first three quarters as it hadn't practiced for a few days. All five Bel Air starters scored in double figures, and the Bobcats had an 11-point lead in the third quarter and stayed on top into the final period.
That's when Brown took over. He scored seven straight points in 43 seconds to give the Eagles a 54-51 lead with 5:50 left. Brown later scored eight straight points and then added the team's final four.
Leandre Richardson came off the bench to give Aberdeen 15 points.
Kevin Goines led Bel Air (10-4, 3-3) with 15 points and Miguel Negron and Bryan Shannon both added 13. A six-point run during the final minute helped the Eagles, along with a costly Bel Air technical foul.