On the strength of its fast break, seventh-ranked High Point has reigned supreme over its Prince George's 4A league competition the last three seasons. Last night 20th-ranked Largo beat the Eagles at their own game, 107-97, in a conference game at Largo.
High Point's lead in Prince George's 4A was narrowed to a single game over Largo, Parkdale, Northwestern and Crossland.
The Lions (14-5, 11-4), who have won their last three games, may not be able to overtake the Eagles (14-5, 12-3), but at least they know they can beat them.
"We felt at the beginning of the season that we were as good as any team in our league," said Largo Coach Lou Wilson. "We just had to come together and believe we can win in big games. This win gives us a big boost going into the playoffs."
Largo seniors Obadiah Johnson (30 points), Robert Holmes (25) and Xavier Martin (23) were able to stem every High Point uprising while defeating the Eagles for the first time in their careers.
"We want the state title," said Johnson. "And it all starts right here."
High Point's Wayne Bristol had a game-high 35 points, but his team was without senior Rawle Whyte, who injured his shoulder in Monday's practice. Teammates Aariel Johnson and Carl Devonish added 14 points apiece.
"I would think that not having Rawle Whyte, who's a starter and a 20-point scorer, was probably the biggest factor," said High Point Coach Ernie Welch. "But Largo played very well. They did a real good job running and rebounding, and if you don't stop them, then its hard to win. We played the tempo we wanted to play. . . . We just didn't stop them from scoring."
Largo proved adept at passing over High Point's pressure defense, which led to breakaway layups and dunks as its fast break was relentless for virtually the entire game.
Trailing by 23-19 in the first quarter, the Lions scored 16 straight points to assume a lead they never relinquished.
High Point whittled the edge to 98-95 with 2:20 remaining but Johnson scored seven points to preserve the victory.