Lightfoot leads Long Reach over Oakland Mills, 49-42

Boys basketball

High Schools

February 05, 2005|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Long Reach's Eugene Lightfoot was thinking history was about to repeat itself after visiting Oakland Mills climbed out of an 11-point halftime deficit to pull ahead by three points with 3:32 to play last night.

Instead, the rangy 6-foot-4 Lightning center caught fire offensively and led his team to a 49-42 victory that kept the No. 14 Lightning just one game behind idle Centennial in the chase for a Howard County championship.

The Lightning (15-3 overall, 13-3 league) had lost to the Scorpions by a point earlier this season when Lightfoot missed a near-impossible shot at the buzzer.

"I was thinking, oh, no, here we go again," Lightfoot said.

But this time, Long Reach went on a 12-2 run to end the game and break a five-game Oakland Mills winning streak.

Lightfoot scored the first seven points on that run and put his team ahead 44-42 with 36 seconds to play.

Oakland Mills (10-5, 10-5) committed three turnovers down the stretch, including a charge and a pass in the lane to no one.

Lightfoot, who had six points and six rebounds in the first quarter when the Lightning pulled ahead 14-7 held Oakland Mills center Jamal John, who averages 18 points, to just two points in the first half.

"If I came out and played defense and shut Jamal down, I knew we could win the game," said Lightfoot.

Oakland Mills dug a hole with 17 turnovers in the first half.

Lightfoot didn't hold John down in the second half, however, as he scored 15 to finish with 17 points and eight rebounds.

"He's a heck of a player," said Lightning coach Al Moraz Jr. about John. "We executed much better down the stretch than we did the first time against Oakland Mills."

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