The public address announcer called Parkdale's up-tempo game the "run-and-shoot offense." But High Point's pressure defense was more relentless than the Panthers' blazing fast break last night in a Prince George's 4A boys basketball game at Parkdale.
In the end, it was the Eagles' hustle and a pesky defense led by Sherwyn Devonish's five steals that proved to be the difference as No. 3 High Point raced to a 103-93 victory.
"Our offense is based around our defense," said Devonish, who finished with a career-high 21 points. "If we play defense to the best of our ability, we'll win. We know that we'll win. It's like we came out tonight and knew what we had to do."
No. 17 Parkdale (1-2 overall, 1-1 in the league) averaged 100 points in its first two games, but the Panthers' run-and-gun style is what High Point (2-1, 2-0) has specialized in the past three seasons.
Last night High Point unraveled Parkdale with its patience, particularly its smart passing.
Devonish led the outstanding performance by the Eagles guards on both ends. Wayne Bristol finished with 30 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals and Ken Avent had 17 points.
Parkdale's twin brothers Brett (29 points, 21 rebounds) and Brent Sherrill (13 points, 9 rebounds, 2 blocks) displayed tremendous athleticism, dunking with two and three defenders on their backs and scoring off cotton-soft bankers.
But the Eagles' wave of substitutions and dazzling open court skills began to take a toll on Parkdale. High Point outscored the Panthers, 36-21, in the second period to lead by 61-44 at halftime.
High Point started the second half with six straight points on two driving baskets by Avent and and one by Rawle Whyte (15 points, five rebounds).
The Panthers calmed down, however, and surged back behind the play of the Sherills. But High Point refused to let the Panthers get closer than eight, 71-63, with 3:08 left in the period.
"Big kids get tired quicker than little kids and that makes the difference," said High Point Coach Ernie Welch. "Eventually, if you move them around enough and are a little bit patient, you'll get basically what you're trying to achieve."