Aberdeen High’s boys’ basketball team is a little myth about not winning the Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference championship last season after winning the previous six. It remains to be seen whether the Eagles will regain the crown, but they a major confidence boost Friday evening.
Aberdeen knocked off No. 10 Lake Clifton, 53-51, at the 15th annual Basketball Academy at Coppin State University Friday evening. Gerrae Williams scored 16 points for Aberdeen, and sophomore guard Brian Adkins added 10.
The Harford County school led the entire fourth quarter as Lake Clifton’s Anthony Lee missed a three-point attempt for the lead with 17 seconds remaining. Williams got the rebound and threw the ball down court to a breaking Adkins for an uncontested layup and a 53-48 advantage with 10 seconds left.
“We’ve been looking forward to this game for a long time, and this is a young group,” said Aberdeen coach Richard Hart. “We’re trying to grow up and be a part of the mix, in terms of the best teams around, and we took a step in that direction.”
“We just stayed together as a team,” said Williams, a junior forward. “We were a little shaky in the beginning, but we straighten up. We stayed together and were able to get things done.”
The Eagles trailed 38-37 entering the final eight minutes, but scores by Williams and Adkins put them in front. Adkins gave Aberdeen its largest lead at 47-42 with about three minutes remaining in regulation.
Lee brought Lake Clifton to 49-48 with 1:33 left on a three-pointer, then regained possession after Adkins missed a pair of free throws. Trae Summers (game-high 17 points) lost the ball in the paint for Lake Clifton and the Eagles gained possession, leading two free throws by Williams with 29.1 seconds remaining.
After calling timeout, the Lakers went back to Lee, whose 15 points came from behind the arc. His shot hit off the back of the iron, and Williams got the ball to Adkins for the clincher.
It’s the biggest win of the season for the Eagles, who regularly play a tough non-league schedule. They’ve been motivated after watching Havre de Grace claimed the UCBAC crown last season.
“This team right here is hungry,” said Williams, who dropped three three-pointers in the opening quarter. “We want it with a vengeance. That’s our job, play hard every night. Hopefully, we’ll get it back.”
The Eagles are back on the Coppin court Saturday afternoon with a matchup against defending Baltimore City league champ and No. 8 Edmondson. Lake Clifton takes on No. 11 Owings Mills Saturday on the final day of the Basketball Academy.