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Woodson boys prevail
Defeat Wilson 72-70 in overtime
(Published January 10, 2005)

By DAVID STEINBACHER
Special to The Common Denominator

In an extremely close contest, the Woodson Warriors boys varsity basketball team held off the Wilson Tigers to gain a 72-70 overtime win Jan. 6 in the nightcap of a doubleheader that saw the Wilson girls win the opener.

After regulation was deadlocked 67-67, Woodson outscored Wilson 5-3 in overtime to prevail.

Woodson, coached by Edward Wilkerson in his first season, improved to 5-6 overall on the season.

"We were fortunate to get out of here tonight with a win," Wilkerson said after the game.

Wilson, coached by Mike Namian (also in his first season), dropped to 6-9 overall on the season.

Warrior junior William Cray knocked down one of two free throws to commence the overtime scoring to make the score Woodson 68 - Wilson 67. Following a Tiger turnover, Woodson senior point guard Keith West converted two free throws to put Woodson ahead by three points.

"We seemed to have a little more poise than they had in overtime. Keith made his free throws in overtime," said Woodson Coach Wilkerson.

Wilson missed a trey; Woodson turned the ball over and Wilson missed from the field. With 1:25 remaining in overtime, West knocked down the decisive shot to give the Warriors a 72-67 lead.

"Keith is our real leader out there on the court," said a pleased Coach Wilkerson.

Both teams then proceeded to turn the ball over twice each. With merely 19.1 seconds remaining, Wilson senior Muhammad Abdul-Ali knocked down a trey to get the Tigers within reach of victory at 72-70. Woodson missed its final shot from the floor. Wilson senior Brendan Wright rebounded the miss and after a couple of passes, Wilson sophomore Jarrell Baltimore's long-range shot at the buzzer was just off the mark.

It was a frustrating loss for Wilson - after trailing by as many as 11 points in the second quarter and trailing by as many as eight points in the third quarter, and leading by 10 points in the fourth quarter.

Woodson led 16-12 after the first quarter was in the books and the Warriors also led 37-29 at intermission. In the third quarter, Wilson outscored Woodson 12-6 to trail 43-41 after three complete quarters.

"We switched our defense to a 'diamond and one' at the start of the third quarter," said Wilson Coach Namian.

Woodson's coach said Wilson "did some things to take us out of our rhythm in the third quarter."

In the torrid fourth quarter, the teams combined for 50 points - more than many NBA teams combine for in a typical professional quarter. In the riveting fourth, Wilson senior Lucien Koefoed opened the scoring with a three-point play (Tigers 44 - Warriors 43). Approximately one minute later, Koefoed knocked down three of three free
throws - following a Woodson technical foul to make it Wilson 47 - Woodson 43.

Ali followed with a trey. The Warriors responded with junior Tony Coleman converting a three-point
play, then Koefoed knocked down another two free throws to make it Wilson 52 - Woodson 46. Wilson's Wright converted a shot off of the glass to add two points. Koefoed kept his streak alive by knocking down two more free throws to put Wilson ahead 56-46.

Koefoed said that "the key to shooting free throws is concentration. You need to block everything out and make the shot."

Coach Namian said his team was "down early in the game. We found a way to get back into it and take a 10-point lead."

From that point forward, Woodson outscored Wilson 21-11 to force overtime.

Woodson junior Robert Lumpkins knocked down a baseline trey to cut Wilson's lead 56-49 with 4:50 remaining. Wright responded for the Tigers with a trey of his own. Keith West added a lay-up with 4:18 remaining.
William Cray scored for the Warriors after being fouled, but missed his free throw, making it Wilson 59 - Woodson 53. Ali added a long jumper for the Tigers with 3:38 remaining.

"Muhammad made some big shots tonight," said Coach Namian.

After a timeout, Woodson's Cray converted one of two free throws. Wilson got caught traveling and Lumpkins nailed a trey to bring the Warriors within four points, 61-57, with 3:01 remaining.

"We have been turning the ball over much too much this season," said Coach Namian.

Wilson missed from the field and Cray rebounded the ball for Woodson. Moments later, Lumpkins added yet another trey to cut Wilson's lead to one point with 2:25 remaining.

"Lumpkins is a great shooter. He's been playing well as of late," said Coach Wilkerson.

Wilson turned the ball over via a bad pass, and moments later a Lumpkins lay-up gave Woodson a 62-61 lead with 2:01 remaining Koefoed missed from the charity stripe (seven of eight from the line in the fourth quarter) and 25 seconds later, William Cray knocked down a medium range jumper for the Warriors. Wilson missed from the floor and the ball was rebounded by Woodson's Tony Coleman.

Moments later, Coleman converted one of two free throws to put Woodson up 65-61 with less than a minute remaining. Wilson missed a trey; Woodson traveled. Wilson's Brendan Wright knocked down a clutch trey to get Wilson within one point with 29.6 remaining.

"Brendan is a big time shooter. He is capable of knocking down 20 points every game," said Coach Namian.

Tony Coleman added a lay-up for the visitors, then Coach Namian said his team "almost found a way to lose this game in regulation."

With the game on the line, Wilson senior Quentin Morrow knocked down a huge trey to knot the score at 67 apiece with just 9.8 seconds remaining.

"We need to continue to work together," said a disappointed Morrow after the loss.

Woodson junior Marcus Marshall was fouled "on the dribble" - but missed his free throw. There was a scurry for the loose ball, following Marshall's miss but the horn sounded, which sent the game into overtime - where Woodson outscored Wilson 5-3 to prevail 72-70.

"Coach Namian is a very good coach. This loss hurts. We're like brothers - we just need to keep working hard," said Morrow.

Coach Namian said that "the story of our season is that we have been too sloppy with the basketball. We have been turning it over too much. The senior class has had to adjust to a lot - I'm the third head coach here in the past three seasons. We're doing the best we can. We're getting into the tough part of the season now - the DCIAA is a very tough league."

Coach Wilkerson said his team has "improved lately with our rebounding. We have also been blocking out well. A realistic goal this season is to win the DCIAA East."

PACING the WARRIORS: Lumpkins (28 points - an incredible six treys and five "deuces"), Coleman (14), West (13), Cray (nine), junior Ed McGee (three), junior Marcus Marshall (two), sophomore Victor Brown (two) and
junior Derrick Peterson (one).

PACING the TIGERS: Wright (20 - six treys), Koefoed (11 - nine of ten from the line), Quentin Morrow (10), Ali (eight), senior Mike Lampkin-Sayers (seven), Jarrell Baltimore (seven), junior Harry Von Kann (four), sophomore Jeff Brooks (two) and junior Brian Green (one).

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