The New Town Titans did more than just close the back-door on the Patterson Mill Huskies, Wednesday night, they barricaded it for the second half in a 48-37 comeback win during the 1A North Regional semifinals.
Coming out of the first half, New Town trailed Patterson Mill, 20-17, but the Titans took a lead less than three minutes into the third quarter and never looked back.
“We played very good basketball the second half,” Titan coach Mike Salapata said. “We cut down on the back-doors, we got on the board and rebound, and we just worked hard.
“Scouting them, we knew they wanted to go back-door on their offense, and 20 points in the first half were giving up the back door. We really stressed at halftime to cut down the back-door cuts.”
And cut down the Titans did, allowing just one back-door cut in the second half, silencing the Husky offense to just six points in the third quarter and 17 points in the entire second half.
But as much as the Titans had to solidify defensively, they also needed to ass points to their mere 16-point score after 16 minutes of play, and came back to rock a 31-point second half, nearly doubling the Huskies’ second half effort, to the 11-point win.
“First half, I had seen that we were down and I knew I had to pull it up,” said Devaunte Coleman, who posted a 13-point second half. “I wasn’t making my shots in the first half, so I just had to pull it up for my team so we could get the ‘W.’”
Coleman turned a seven-point first half into a 20-point performance through the end of the game, sinking two three-pointers and going a perfect two-for-two from the line.
Even while limiting Patterson Mill’s offense in the second half, the Juskies trailed by just one-point with four minutes left in the game, and tried to foul their way back in the game’s fina minutes.
That’s where New Town’s Tavon Geter stepped in, sinking his final three free-throws in the games final minute, leading the Titans to a 16-point fourth quarter finish.
“My teammates encouraged me, my coach encouraged me, and the item bit of fans that we had encouraged me,” Geter said about his time at the line. “I juts had to stick to my regular routine; four dribbles and take my shot. Nothing else.”
Geter ended the game in double-digit scoring, scooping up 10 points, including his eight-point fourth quarter performance.
Patterson Mill was led by Mike Eckart, who posted 10 points in the game, while teammates Reggie Daniels and J.J. Butler sank eight-points each.
The Titans now advance to the 1A North Regional Finals, taking on the No. 1 seeded Owings Mills Eagles. The Eagles recently dispatched the Havre de Grace Warriors, 72-62, in their own regional semifinal.
“We have to play like we played the second half,” Salapata said. “We set a goal at the beginning of the year, and we didn’t have a goal for county or for nothing else, we had a goal to get to states and put a banner on the wall.
“We will enjoy this game for our hour bus ride home, but its over, and it is back to work tomorrow.”
New Town 49, Patterson Mill 37
NT 9 8 15 16 — 48
PM 7 13 6 11 — 37