The Metropolitan All-Stars won two division games over the Washington Madness this past weekend to stay in sole possession of first place in the EBA with a perfect 4-0 record. On Saturday, the All-Stars won in overtime 119 to 114 at the Madness and won 123 to 114 on Sunday at home.
Terrance Carter (49 points), Elyon Bush (46 points) and Calvin Brown (32 points) in the two games, led the All-Stars balanced scoring attack. Cedric Stewart was outstanding scoring 33 points and playing tenacious defense against one of the most prolific scorers in the EBA, Jamar Board (64 points in two games). Cedric also registered 15 assists over the weekend.
Coach Al Brown of the All-Stars said, “Going into today’s game, I knew it would be a tough contest. I could almost count on team Madness bolstering a supremely talented roster. It is always a tough game. I thought the team was extremely anxious to play this game. In fact, playing the same team twice in once weekend made cause for a playoff-like environment. Initially our anxiety got the best of us.
He continued, “Although we had no real problems scoring, there were several defensive lapses. You can’t afford to make too many mistakes against a team with the offensive fire power of Team Madness. We went back and forth, one taking the other’s best shot. There came a point where we rallied and made several defensive plays in succession. This allowed us to build a big lead – as large as 18 points. However the lead was short lived. Again several missed assignments and a hoard of turnovers put Madness back into the game and allowed a lead late in the game.”
“I believe in the last 3 minutes of the game, the All-Stars made their best defensive stance. We got stops and we were able to attack the rim. However, we had dug ourselves a serious hole – down 5 with 30.6 seconds left. Things were rather bleak.”
“I encouraged the team to stay aggressive – attack the rim and foul immediately. With some missed free throws and some favorable bounces, we found ourselves in overtime. We rode the defensive momentum into overtime and were able to capture the win. This was truly a nail biter.”
On the second game, Coach Al commented, “After the Saturday night battle and victory, there was no time for celebration. We were right back at it on Sunday afternoon.”
“The games this weekend really had a playoff atmosphere to them. After Saturday night’s game, I knew we would be in for an even tougher game on Sunday. Sunday’s game was everything I anticipated. The Madness team got off to a fast start forcing the tempo and knocking down shots. It took us mid-way through the first quarter to get settled in defensively and to play at our pace, which was extremely hard when playing against such and offensively capable team. We withstood their initial run and were able to capture the lead by half time.”
“The 3rd quarter was not so favorable for us. Team Madness opened the quarter with a flurry of 3 point shots. We had some key players get into foul trouble, but we have players that are more the capable of filling in when needed. In fact, I believe the unit in the 3rd quarter took the lead back. They were in a great rhythm, especially defensively.”
“We road that momentum mid-way into the 4th quarter. With fresh legs, we made some substitutions and we able to extend the lead with increased defensive pressure and rebounding. We stayed in attack mode, didn’t settle for jump shots and were able to secure the victory. It was one of the better games I’ve been a part of.”
To very talented teams playing twice over one weekend – couldn’t ask for much more!