Suitland senior Roddy Peters was busy high-fiving classmates near his team’s locker room when Coach George McClure summoned his players back to the court after Thursday’s 75-66 loss to seventh-ranked Eleanor Roosevelt. A day before shoulder surgery, the University of Maryland-bound guard had scored 24 points in his final high school game, and McClure took over the public address system to give a proper send-off to a player who had shirked the lure of private school competition to stay at his neighborhood school.
Peters “doesn’t like a lot of recognition,” McClure said after his team faded down the stretch in its third loss. “I didn’t really want to make a big deal of it because that’s not his thing, but people need to understand what this kid has done for Suitland.”
Last month Peters began practice with the Rams knowing surgery was likely necessary to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder, and a second opinion soon confirmed Peters would have to cut his senior season short.
Peters, who attended Westlake as a freshman, said Terrapins Coach Mark Turgeon preferred he not risk further injury playing high school ball with a shoulder that often tightened in the middle of the game. Instead, the 6-foot-4 guard slapped on a black brace and continued to lead the Rams for as long as possible.
Peters was scheduled to undergo surgery at 2 p.m. on Friday before kicking off a roughly six-month recovery that will include eight weeks in a sling. Peters said Turgeon called him before Thursday’s home game and told him to take it as easy as possible.
“If I wanted to I could have played a full season,” Peters said, “but I know I’ve got bigger things to look forward to.”
Early on Thursday, Peters seemed poised to finish his season in storybook style. He scored 14 before halftime, and the Rams (3-3 overall, 3-2 Prince George’s 4A) didn’t trail until midway through the third quarter in a rematch of last season’s Maryland 4A South final.
But Peters picked up his third foul in the first minute after halftime, blasting into senior Emmanuel Matey on a drive to the basket, and Eleanor Roosevelt (6-0, 5-0) took control behind senior Tiwian Kendley, who scored a team-high 22 points. The Rams trailed 63-61 with less than three minutes left before the Raiders put the game out of reach with an 11-2 run.
Afterward, Peters already had his brace ripped off by the time he had made it through the postgame handshake line and soon after he wrapped McClure in a hug. He closes the season scoring 21.3 points per game, slightly behind his average from last season when he led the Rams within a victory of the state tournament.
“I was starting to get more nervous and nervous because I knew it was about to be over,” Peters said, “but I just fought through it and did the best I could do.”