Patrick Ewing was in perfect position to grab the rebound of a teammate's missed shot. The ball bounced high but the 7-footer caught it with one hand, his back to the basket.
Now Ewing had a problem.
He wanted to put the ball right back up, but two opposition players, both standing 6-foot-8 or so, were between Ewing and the basket, defying him to turn around for a layup.
So without wasting a second, Ewing leaped -- the basket still behind him. The two defenders jumped, too. But they quickly came down. Ewing didn't, not until he had nearly brought down the basket support with a two-handed, reverse jam.
The fans in Dunbar's crowded gymnasium yesterday went berserk. That basket with five minutes left in the first half gave the Metromedia 5 team -- composed mainly of former, current and future Georgetown players -- a 63-37 lead over the Jets.
Metromedia 5 coasted from there to defeat the Jets, 148-102, in a senior division Urban Coalition game. Ewing, the soon-to-be Georgetown center, played only about half the game yet led all scorers with 24 points and 17 rebounds.
The highly touted graduate of Rindge & Latin High School in Cambridge, Mass., arrived in Washington less than 24 hours earlier, but said he still wanted to play. Ewing, who will soon begin summer school classes at Georgetown, will be the centerpiece of a showcase summer league team.
In the one-sided victory over the Jets, Anthony Jones and William Martin, both bound for Georgetown, each scored 19 points. Gene Smith, the Hoya defensive standout as a freshman last season, orchestrated the attack from point guard.
Earl Jones, UDC's 7-foot center who plays forward for Metromedia 5, scored 23 points on an assortment of slams, dips, scoops and jumpers. John Duren, the former Hoya guard now with the Utah Jazz, scored 21 points.
The Jets never had a chance. Victor Kelly, a 5-9 guard, ran the team and scored 19 points. Joe Manley and Howard's James Ratiff each scored 22. Metromedia led by as many as 50 points and many of the seats in Dunbar were empty before the final buzzer.
Ewing will probably play in most of Metromedia's games. It's the perfect opportunity for him to get comfortable playing with future teammates Anthony Jones, Martin and Smith.
Hoyas Coach John Thompson, observing from the Metromedia guards kept throwing Ewing chest-high passes. "All they have to do is put the ball above the rim," Thompson said. "Just put it above the rim and he'll be there."