The No. 1 Patterson boys basketball team was never able to find its offensive rhythm against No. 6 Edmondson in Thursday night’s Baltimore City championship game at Morgan State.
So the Clippers did everything else — rebound, defend, secure loose balls and make the extra pass — to have an opportunity to win the game at the end.
When the end came, so did Patterson.
The Clippers went on an 11-0 run in the final three minutes, turning a tie game into a 60-52 win over the Red Storm for the program’s second Baltimore City championship in three years and third overall.
Senior star Marvin Price best represented the Clippers’ resiliency. He hadn’t made an outside shot the entire game until hitting a 3-pointer with 2:36 left. He followed with a thunderous left-handed baseline dunk a minute later to help seal the win. Junior guard Zach Blackwell scored a team-high 16 points, including a 3-pointer and three free throws in the closing minutes.
Patterson improved to 18-3 and will close out the regular season at No. 7 Lake Clifton on Saturday. Edmondson, which got a game-high 19 points from Markus Hocker, fell to 20-3.
Following his 3-pointer, Price, who finished with 12 points, made a gesture of relief and the Clippers were on their way to victory with a 50-44 lead.
“It was just like a relief, like ‘Thank God,’ and I was just happy because it was close the whole game and I was cold, so if I even got a little bit going it would push us over the edge and that goes with anybody,” Price said.
The Red Storm never had a lead but pushed back every time the Clippers threatened to break the game open. Edmondson’s Keith Bolden hit a 3 with 5:18 to play to tie the game at 44. Two minutes went by before the next points, but it was two free throws from Blackwell that gave the Clippers the lead for good at 46-44.
The play that proceeded Price’s big 3-pointer summed up the Clippers’ effort throughout the game. Price was at the free-throw line and made his first attempt to make it 47-44. His second try rimmed out, and when it hit the floor, Blackwell pounced on it to force a jump ball.
Patterson got the ball out of bounds and Gerard Mungo found Price at the top of the key.
Jalen Willis played a fine all-around game and finished with 14 points, while Mungo added 12.
Willis said it was just a matter of believing in the team.
“They got on a couple runs, but we just had to keep our composure and play together,” he said. “Once we played together, we got in transition some and then had to get our main player [Price] involved and he got us there.”
All season, the Red Storm have been able to also stick together and find ways to close out games – a 73-67 win over Lake Clifton to win the league’s A Division the best example. But they weren’t able to find the same form Thursday, missing several chances close to the basket and also getting called on a five-second violation when trying to rally. Daniel Frink came off the bench to score 13 points.
“We played tough,” Edmondson coach Darnell Dantzler said. “We just missed shots — missed layups down the stretch and didn’t convert when we needed to. Our defense we played on Price worked for the majority of the game, but he got hot and hit a couple big shots that helped decide the game.”
P – Price 12, Willis 14, Blackwell 17, T. Thomas 3, Mungo 12, Jones 2. Totals: 22 11-19 60
E – Hocker 19, Bolden 3, Lewis 10, Frink 13, Jones 2, Q. Williams 4, Smith 1. Totals: 22 5-11 52
Half: P, 32-22