Friday night’s Narrows League high school boys basketball battle between Wilson and host Foss was a contrast of styles.
Foss tried to get the ball inside and use an interior advantage to score in the paint. Facing the Foss zone, Wilson played on the perimeter and shot lots of 3-pointers.
On this night, the inside game was superior. Foss picked up a 93-79 victory, and claimed a season sweep over first-place Wilson.
Foss, Wilson, and Lincoln are each now 10-2 and tied atop the 3A Narrows League standings. Wilson hosts Lincoln on Wednesday night in a game that will be crucial for both teams.
Foss sophomore Roberto Gittens shot the lights out in the first quarter, pouring in 14 points as the Falcons built a 22-17 lead. Gittens scored inside and outside, including three 3-pointers.
“My teammates told me to just play my game; they trusted me,” said Gittens, who finished with 26 points to lead Foss.
Gittens and senior forward Stephon Shaw combined for 42 points and 15 rebounds, with numerous blocked shots.
“We knew we had an advantage because we’re bigger than them,” said Gittens. “Coach has been telling us all week to work it inside.”
Foss played more zone defense than usual, which opened up the perimeter for Wilson. The Rams were 10-for-26 on 3-point attempts, shooting 38.5 percent.
“We decided to roll with (the zone) and see how they shot the ball,” said Foss coach Mike Cocke’. “It seemed like they struggled with it in the first half aside from David Jenkins, so we decided to stay with it in the second half.”
Jenkins led Wilson with 34 points, shooting 6-for-12 on 3-pointers.
Foss built a 17-point lead in the third quarter, but Wilson fought back and cut the gap to seven with three minutes, 11 seconds to play.
Foss freshman point guard Lazjon Bonds kept a cool head down the stretch, helping control the ball to stave off the Wilson comeback bid. His steal and layup with 1:15 remaining sealed the game.
“As a freshman, to play that well in that environment and get his teammates involved — that to me, offensively, won the game,” Cocke’ said.
Senior guard Haywood Irwin added 22 points for Foss. Irwin was 5-for-6 from the free throw line in the final two minutes, when Wilson was fouling to try to get back in the game.