Not done yet
Lackey boys rally to beat Stone in overtime in 2A South section semis
Throughout Tuesday night’s Class 2A South Region Section I semifinals contest at Lackey, the Thomas Stone basketball team was able to set the tem- po offensively and create havoc on defense, but the Chargers did not go away.
After going up by as many as 15 points in the third quarter, Stone saw its lead dwindle to just six by the end of the quarter and Lackey had taken the lead with less than two minutes left in the regulation.
The Cougars roared back to tie the game at 63 to force overtime, but the top-seeded Chargers used stout defensive pressure in the extra period to secure a 81-75 victor y.
Lackey (17-6 overall) will host third-seeded Westlake at 7 p.m. Thursday in the section championship game with the winner advancing to the 2A South Region championship game scheduled for Saturday to meet the winner of Thursday’s Section II final between Prince George’s County Central and Douglass. The Wolverines (18-7) defeated second-seeded Calvert 90-64 in Tuesday’s other section semifinal.
In overtime, Stone (15-9) led 69-67 on a three-pointer from junior swingman
Kamau Mitchell (game-high 34 points), one of his eight threes in the game, with 2 minutes 15 sec- onds remaining, but Lackey senior guard Hakeem Everett (team-high 23 points) help spur a 7-0 Chargers run with 1 minute remaining.
Stone came to within 74-71 with 51.4 seconds left, but Everett nailed a pair of free throws to push the lead to five.
“We just had to play with some heart and keep our heads up and play with intensity,” Everett said. “We practiced for six straight days leading up to this game and we had to crank it up. Our communication picked on defense in the second half and that was the key.”
Mitchell’s three in the left corner brought the Cougars to within 7674 with 41 seconds remaining, but Lackey’s Destin Ingram split a pair of free throws with 30 ticks left and steal and a lay-in by Vincent Parker (17 points) with 10 seconds to go gave the Chargers a 79-74 lead to help wrap up the win.
Lackey, which had four play- ers in double figures, received a huge spark off the bench from sophomore Rasheed Cooley, who finished with 20 points and four steals, connecting on two three-pointers in the third quar- ter, one of which capped a 9-0 run that ended the period to help cut a 15-point Stone lead to 51-45 enter- ing the final period.
“It was all about trust that the seniors had in me to come out and play my game and that’s what I did,” Cooley said. “I knew we needed a spark and that’s my role to come off the bench and bring energy. We have to come in ready for Westlake.”
Trailing 30-22 with 45 seconds left in the second quarter, Cooley scored back-to-back baskets on a jumper and a layup off of a steal to help cut the Cougars lead to 30-26 at halftime.
“We got away from what we nor- mally do, but we had one more run left in us,” said Lackey head coach Sean Fox, whose team won both regular season meetings over Stone by a combined five points. “Rasheed is a great penetrator, but he is also one of our best defenders and he helped that lead shrink, so it was a big win for us.”
Mitchell scored 14 of Stone’s 21 points in the third, hitting four straight three-pointers to give the Cougars a commanding 51-36 lead that eventually unfolded.
Stone sophomore forward Gary Grant (24 points) scored 14 points in the first half to provide a spark inside and on the boards.
The Cougars, who defeated fifth-seeded La Plata 98-45 in Friday’s section quarterfinal, had critical turnovers late in regulation and during overtime as Lackey outscored 36-24 during that span.
“Some of the mistakes that we made came at bad time and it happens,” said Thomas Stone head coach Dale Lamberth, whose team had just one senior in guard Donovan McCrae in the starting lineup this season. “We regrouped a little bit in regulation when we were down five in regulation to give us an opportunity to play overtime. We have a young team and I think the future is bright.”
Lackey sophomore guard Rasheed Cooley goes up for a layup attempt as Kevin Skidmore of Thomas Stone trails from behind in Tuesday night’s Class 2A South Region Section I boys basketball semifinal contest. Cooley finished with 20 points off the bench as the Chargers won 81-75 in overtime.