The Panthers’ floor general closed his stellar four-year career in typical fashion — a 23-point, 10-rebound, five-assist performance to lead No. 1 St. Frances (38-4) past rival Mount Saint Joseph for its third straight Baltimore Catholic League championship. Baldwin was named the tournament’s MVP for a third straight year, joining elite company with St. Frances alum Mark Karcher (1995-97) and St. Maria Goretti great Rodney Monroe (1985-87), the only others to accomplish the feat. Playing with a hairline fracture in his wrist that occurred early in the season, Baldwin averaged 11 points, eight assists, four rebounds and three steals per game. The Virginia Commonwealth commit leaves the program with 1,671 points, 770 assists and 505 rebounds. He was the driving force for a combined five championships for the Panthers in the BCL and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference. “When you look at it — five championships in four years, three [BCL] tournament MVP’s and back-to-back Player of the Year honors — it’s got to be arguably one of the best careers in Baltimore high school history. I don’t know if anybody has a better resume than that,” St. Frances coach Nick Myles said.
Poly, senior, forward
With dominant size and athleticism, the 6-foot-8 two-time All-Metro standout went into the season as the area’s most imposing player. He maximized his gifted skills with hard work, leadership and the desire to take over games in every fashion. Lewis regularly played above the rim at both ends of the court. In addition, he improved his versatility on offense with an outside game to match his work down low. He averaged 19.3 points, 13.4 rebounds, 4.4 blocked shots and four assists. The No. 2 Engineers (24-2) were in position to win a fourth straight Class 3A state title before the state tournament was postponed. This season, he finished with 18 double doubles. “The thing that happened this year that I was most proud of with Justin is he began to play that much harder in practice,” Poly coach Sam Brand said. “Taking practice more serious, he pushed his teammates harder each day, and what it meant was he was more invested in winning more during games.” Committed to play at Marquette, Lewis is former Cardinal Gibbons and Duke standout Steve Wojciechowski’s first recruit out of Baltimore. Lewis finished his three years at Poly as the program’s third all-time leading scorer with 1,374 points.