Down eight points to City College entering the fourth quarter Tuesday evening, Edmondson faced a devastating blow to its Baltimore City title hopes and region playoff standing. The Red Storm regrouped and the chase for the city title game is a little tighter.
No. 10 Edmondson rallied for a 61-57 victory over the eighth-ranked Black Knights in a Division I match on The Alameda. Darius Hubbard scored a team-high 15 points for Edmondson (15-4 overall), and senior guard Darius Walker added 14.
The west Baltimore school upped its defensive pressure over the final eight minutes to hand City (14-5, 7-1 Division I) its first loss in league play. The Knights are tied with defending champ and second-ranked Dunbar in Division I with more than a week remaining in the regular season.
The top two teams in the standings at the end of the regular season will play for the city title in two weeks at Morgan State University’s Hill Field House. The Red Storm (7-2) and No. 10 Poly (6-2) sit a game behind in the loss column.
Edmondson is back in the hunt thanks to its aggressive man-to-man which held City to two field goals in the fourth and forced several turnovers.
“We had to scrap up and change things on defense,” said Dantzler, who switched from zone to man. “We got a couple of steals and couple of blocked shots by Jaquan Smith and turned the game around.”
Kani Coles’ three-point play gave Edmondson the lead for good, 53-51. Coles, a talented 6-foot-5 sophomore, combined with Hubbard for 13 points in the final frame.
Leading 28-24 at halftime, City expanded the lead in the third with junior guard Omari George scoring nine of his game-high 16 points. But George and junior guard Blair Davis (14 points) had only field goals in the fourth as City went the final six minutes without a basket.
Dantzler said a dunk by Myrek Lee Fowkles (nine points) in the fourth helped turn the momentum for the Red Storm. After blowing fourth quarter leads in losses to Dunbar and Milford Mill, Dantzler thinks his squad has matured.
“We’re starting to become battle-tested and trust each other,” said Dantzler. “We went through some adversity early with some tough losses. The kids have to play harder, the coaches need to coach harder. It’s on all of us.”
Edmondson, which is chasing Randallstown for the top seed in the Class 2A North Region, has a non-league game against Cristo Rey Friday before completing Division I play next week with FAET and Patterson.
City, which has dropped four of its last five decisions, plays at Carver Vo-Tech Friday. Next week, the Knights host Dunbar and City.
No. 10 Edmondson 61, No. 8 City College 57
Edmondson – Walker 14, Hubbard 15, Lee-Fowlkes 9, Tripp 7, Coles 11, McClain 2, Smith 3. Totals: 20 19-31 61.
City – Davis 14, Butler 4, Williams 9, Bond 6, George 16, Juwan Grant 6, John Grant 2. Totals: 19 19-25 57.
Edmondson 14 10 13 24 – 61
City 14 14 17 12 – 57