Five Takeaways: MPSAA 1A/2A Final Four

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Maryland/D.C.

Posted On: 03/10/18 5:00 AM

COLLEGE PARK, MD — Dunbar, Fairmont Heights, Lake Clifton, and North Caroline each picked up wins in their respective state semifinal contests on Friday. Here we recap the day with five takeaways.

POETS DOMINATE INSIDE & OUT

Jamal West
Jamal West is a solid prospect who low-mid major schools should track closely in 2020

Dunbar guards Dashawn Phillip and Malik McCormick were key in orchestrating a comprehensive win over Clear Spring in the first game of the day. Let’s not ignore the contributions made by the Poets’ long-limbed and very strong 6-foot-4 sophomore Jamal West, who pulled down a game-high 19 rebounds. McCormick, a junior, recorded 18 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, and a steal. Phillip, an unsigned 6-foot-5 wing, recorded 19 points, 9 rebounds, 2 steals, and 2 assists. As a team, Dunbar made 7 of 19 from three while holding Clear Spring to 0 for 13 in that department.

HORNETS LOOKING TO GO BACK-TO-BACK

Darren Lucas-White
Lucas-White is due for a significant jump in the next rankings update

Fairmont Heights outlasted Patterson Mill 72-49, and have advanced to their second straight state title game. 2018 Kimani Benjamin set the tone with his activity, but also showed that he can put the ball in the basket. The 6-foot-2 wing scored 17 points. 2018 Darren Lucas-White showcased impressive leadership intangibles for the Hornets. The experienced lead guard recorded 14 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals, and committed just 1 turnover. Fairmont Heights forced 25 Patterson Mill turnovers, and committed just 11 as a team.

LAKERS KNOCK OFF BEARS

Baltimore teams improved to 5-0 at Xfinity this weekend after Lake Clifton’s win over Oakdale. This was the most anticipated matchup of the day, and it didn’t disappoint. The marquee matchup in this contest was between Oakdale 2019 standout Collin Schlee, and 2020 guard Michael Gray of Lake Clifton. Schlee ended up with 22 points, but shot just 8 of 20 from the field, including 2 of 10 from three. We have to give Gray a lot of credit for the way he frustrated his man by playing stingy defense both on and off the ball. The sophomore swiped 4 steals, but also recorded 22 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 block.

NORTH CAROLINE’S CINDERELLA STORY CONTINUES

North Caroline knew that the odds were pitted against them, but it seems that only brought them closer as a team. The Bulldogs were anchored inside by their imposing Notre Dame Football Commit Ja’mion Franklin, who recorded 11 points, 6 rebounds, 1 block & 1 steal. Joey Adams, an unsigned senior guard, went for 29 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals.

QUICK TAKES

  • Dunbar & Fairmont Heights will face off tomorrow for the 1A state title. This is a significant matchup between two storied programs. The Poets will look to earn their 16th state championship while the Hornets are looking for two straight.
  • Poly & Milford Mill are set to duke it out for the 3A state title. The Engineers are looking to go back-to-back, but we don’t expect the Millers to make it easy. This matchup should prove to be one among the most intriguing of the day.