The first-place South Pointe Stallions faced the rare situation Monday night of having to play the second of back-to-back rivalry games at Northwestern High School.
The Stallions were coming off the much-anticipated first-place showdown with the Rock Hill Bearcats on Friday night. South Pointe fought back after trailing much of the night to avenge its only loss of the year and claimed sole possession of the top spot in Region 3-AAAA with a three-point win.
The story was much the same in the Trojans gym as the teams made up a game that was postponed from the ice glazing the area received on Jan. 25. The Stallions once again prevailed Monday, coming back from being down as many as 18 points, and scored 26 fourth-quarter points to pull out a 61-56 win over the Trojans.
Sophomore guard Marveon Mobley scored all 17 of his points in the second half, including 10 in the frenetic final frame, to lead the Stallions comeback.
Hes the James Harden of our team, South Pointe coach Melvin Watson said, referring to the Houston Rockets All-Star guard. Hes not a sophomore anymore.
Junior guard Anthony Johnson was saddled with four fouls but Mobley picked up the slack. Johnson still finished with 11 points. The Trojans were hit hardest with foul trouble as senior point guard LaThomas Long picked up his fourth at the 4:45 mark of the third and the Trojans leading 36-23. He quickly fouled out when he came back in to begin the fourth quarter. Junior forward Mason Rudolph, who had six points in the third, also fouled out in the fourth.
You lose your point guard and your guy in the middle, it hurts, Northwestern coach Mike Gossett said. We did a great job for three quarters and we just didnt finish. I love my guys. They play hard.
Northwestern led 41-23 after an and-one by Mustafia Love, who led all scorers with 19, with 3:40 left in the third. However, the Stallions finished the period on a 9-0 run, with seven of those coming from Mobley, to cut the lead to eight. He then hit two 3-pointers early in the fourth to get South Pointe right back in the game.
South Pointe tied the game at 54 when Tay Blake scored underneath and hit the ensuing free throw with 2:38 left. Blake had 14 for the game. A basket by Mobley put the Stallions ahead to stay 56-55 with 1:51 left. Blake scored again after a steal and the Stallions held on.
Losing Long hurt coach Gossett, Watson said. When I see Northwestern, I dont see their record. They are very capable.
South Pointe 61, Northwestern 56
South Pointe - Marveon Mobley 17, Tay Blake 14, Anthony Johnson 11, PJ Heath 9, Isaiah Rodney 5, Tony Frazier 3, Paul Gilchrist 2.
Northwestern - Mustafia Love 19, Rontavious McClure 13, Clenzo Ross 8, Manzi Hill 7, Mason Rudolph 7, LaThomas Long 2.
3-pointers - South Pointe 5(Mobley 3, Blake, Frazier) Northwestern 0. Team fouls - South Pointe 25, Northwestern 19. Fouled out - Long, Rudolph (NW) Technicals - South Pointe (team).
Records: South Pointe 19-1, 11-1 Region 3- AAAA; Northwestern 10-13, 6-6.