Webb outlasts Person in rowdy Roxboro
Undefeated J.F. Webb has seen enough of Tyrone Outlaw Jr. to last a lifetime.
Ditto Roxboro Person of Webb star Isaiah Hicks.
Outlaw scored a game-high 39 points, but it wasn’t enough Friday as Hicks and Webb (7-0) took an 81-75 victory in the second matchup between the schools in eight days.
The Warriors took a 90-73 rout exactly a week earlier.
This one was close, with Webb pulling away in the final 22 seconds in front of a sellout crowd of about 900 in the 834-capacity Person gym. Several hundred more fans lined up down the block an hour before the game hoping to get in.
That wasn’t going to happen on a night Person (6-2) had been looking forward to all season.
“What an environment,” Webb coach Leo Brunelli said. “Anytime you get (a win) on the road, it’s great, but to do it in an environment like this is something else.”
While Outlaw put the Rockets on his back, scoring nine straight points on two 3-pointers and an old-fashioned three-point play in a 46-second span in the final 1:33 of play, Hicks (21 points, 20 rebounds) was dominant on the boards and got plenty of help from junior guard Mitron Terry.
Terry led the Warriors with 28 points and added a team-best three assists.
Person never really competed in last week’s loss, turning the ball over seven times in the first 2:30 minutes to basically fall out of contention.
The Rockets did a much better job handling the Webb pressure this time, using Outlaw to inbound the ball and then offering a nice outlet target against the press.
“We played really well tonight, well enough to win,” Person coach Charles Dacus said. “But Webb made the plays down the stretch.”
The Rockets turned the ball over 24 times to just 15 for Webb but made up for it most of the night with effective shooting and a 36-26 rebounding edge through three quarters, leading 60-57 on an Outlaw rebound follow as the buzzer sounded to end the third period.
Outlaw didn’t miss a shot until the 5:37 mark of the second quarter, had 19 points at the half and 28 after three quarters. Hicks didn’t officially attempt a shot in the first quarter but wound up with 11 at the break.
“Outlaw is a great player,” Brunelli said. “We threw some junk (defenses) at him, but it didn’t stop him.”
Person’s rebounding edge turned around in the fourth quarter as Hicks grabbed eight boards and Webb outrebounded the Rockets 18-5 for the final eight minutes.
Webb took a 65-62 lead on an alley-oop dunk by the 6-9 Hicks off a pass from Terry with about six minutes left. Outlaw and Rashi Richmond got the lead back at 66-65, Outlaw scoring on a layup and Richmond stealing the ball from Hicks and beating him to the basket. Hicks was called for goaltending Richmond’s layup try with 5:08 to play.
The next three minutes were all Webb, as the Warriors scored nine straight points thanks to turnovers and misses by the Rockets. Stefan Cates’ 3-pointer with 4:44 left and another Hicks alley-oop dunk from Terry were the key plays.
Webb had a 74-66 lead, but Person still had Outlaw, and sometimes that’s enough. The 6-5 senior UNC Greensboro signee knocked down a 3-pointer with 1:33 left and followed 10 seconds later with another from outside the arc.
“We knew (Outlaw) was hot and his teammates got the ball for him,” Dacus said. “He put us on his back there.”
Terry hit a 15-foot jumper for a 76-72 Webb lead with 1:16 left but missed a pair of free throws with 1:03 to play to leave the door open for, yes, Outlaw.
Hicks rebounded a Person miss but saw his outlet pass picked off by Logan Coats (14 points), who found Outlaw. Outlaw drove and dunked over Hicks who was whistled for his fifth foul on the play.
The free throw made it 76-75 Webb with 47.3 seconds left.
The overflow crowd roared as Webb missed three straight tries at the other end and Person got the ball back, trailing by a point with 22 seconds left.
Outlaw’s pass found Coats in the backcourt but the pressure finally did Person in, as Jerry Smith lost the handle on a pass from Coats and Devonte Williams stole it went to the hoop for two points and a 78-75 lead.
Smith lost the handle on the ensuing play, as well, Bryan Smith getting the steal and finding Terry who was fouled.
Terry’s free throw with 7.7 seconds left made it a two possession game and Williams added two more free throws five seconds later to close it out.
“That last 40 seconds was a tough sequence,” Brunelli said. “But what a great team effort.”