With a raucous home crowd in tow, Gilman upset their crosstown rival Boys Latin by a score of 66-64 on Friday.
Christian Winborne led the Greyhounds to victory with his 15 points, helping offset a game-high 20 points from Lorenzo Donadio of Boys Latin.
Winborne, a sophomore, was particularly clutch down the stretch, hitting a late three to help pull out the win.
“It just made me want to go harder because I saw that my teammates believed in me and they wanted to run another play for me to get an open shot like that,” Winborne said. “So, I knew that next time I came down that I was going to make the shot for my teammates.”
Winborne’s 3-pointer and Danny Rosenfield’s lay in with 15.1 seconds remaining proved to be enough for Gilman to stay in front. Rosenfield, a senior, finished with 10 points on the night off of the bench, coming up clutch for his squad with timely shots, rebounding and strong defensive play.
“Every time that I go out, I’m just trying to play as hard as I can,” said Rosenfield. “I try to bring positive energy — if a guy is missing shots, if a guy’s not playing well — I tell him ‘keep shooting, I believe in you’. At the end of the day, this team’s like a family. We’re going to stay with each other no matter what. If a guy’s not making plays one night, we’re going to keep going to him, we’re not switching it up. So, I just try to reinforce that in guys.”
The game started with each team trading blows and ended in the same fashion. Donadio ended the first quarter with a 3-pointer at the buzzer, leading the way with seven points for a 14-13 Boys’ Latin lead.
Gilman senior Roman Hinds began his push for the basketball in the second quarter, making his presence felt on the board and with multiple blocked shots. He scored four of his 12 points, to go along with Rosenfield’s two 3-point shots for a Gilman 31-27 lead at the half.
It was just the culmination of four years of hard work and a great deal of travel for Hinds.
“For Roman, it was just a year about confidence,” said Gilman head coach Will Bartz. “Things that don’t go noted is Roman is from Jamaica. He moved here in the ninth grade away from his family and he lives here with his incredibly generous aunt and uncle. But, he’s away from his family, he’s seen them twice since he moved here and basically playing a new sport. He really grew up playing soccer.
“So, just watching his growth — I came when he was finishing his freshman year. To have three years with him and see the progression of what he’s done and see him now believe in himself ... Today, he was playing to be great."
In the third quarter, Winborne added six additional points, but was flanked by Donadio and Will Spencer’s nine total points for the Lakers. Gilman still held onto the lead with the game sitting at 53-47.
Gilman’s win came courtesy of the hands of Winborne and Rosenfield, with a 3-pointer by the former and a lay-in by the latter, but Kendall Walker and Riar Schell came close to spoiling the game with two buckets of their own in the final minute.
It was an emotional win for Bartz, who is a 1999 graduate of Gilman.
“To see the kids believe in each other like they did and we have some key injuries,” said Bartz. “Jordan [Foster] fouling out and being in foul trouble the entire game and just to watch the next guy come off of the bench and be ready and excited to fill the role, rather than nervous to fill the role. Being a teacher-coach, that’s all that you can hope for is for your kids to take away from the sport that you coach and I’m really proud of them.”
With the win, his team pulls within a half game of first-place Boys’ Latin in the MIAA “A” Black Division.
Though a close loss for the Lakers, head coach Cliff Rees was displeased with his team’s defensive effort. He did, however, like their ability to claw back into the game at the end.
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“I was happy with their fight,” said Rees. “They’ve been fighting all year, but I wasn’t happy with our defensive effort or our defensive communication all night long. That’s really where we struggled. That, and Gilman played a heck of a game — they shot the ball really well, executed some really nice sets to get the right looks. So, they played well — well-coached, well-executed and we just didn’t make the defensive plays that we needed to.”
Gilman (11-7, 8-4) will next take on Mount St. Joe at 6 p.m. on Wednesday at home and Boys’ Latin (11-7, 8-3) also has a home game on Tuesday at 5:45 p.m. against Loyola Blakefield.