2012 HighSchoolOT.com Holiday Invitational Live Blog

FINAL: Hampton gets by in overtime, wins thriller against Cuthbertson

Posted December 27, 2012
Updated December 28, 2012

FINAL, Hampton 61 Cuthbertson 59 : In what was one of the more thrilling matchups of the tournament so far, the Hampton Crabbers found a way to win in overtime against the Cuthbertson High School Cavaliers. The matchup of popular guards did not let anyone in the building down, including the likes of Mark Gottfried and Rodney Purvis.

In the final seconds of overtime, Cavalier guard Emmitt Afam missed a 3-pointer to tie the game. Hampton big Sammie Royal secured the rebound, got fouled, and made one free throw to make it a two possession game. The Cavs then scored on a late basket to go down by two with a second left. In thrilling fashion, Afam stole the inbound on the following play and lobbed a shot up that could have forced a second overtime. The shot was short and the game ended with Hampton on top.

Cuthbertson's high-profile guard Shelton Mitchell had a game-high 30 points on 11-of-18 shooting, but his performance was overshadowed by the Wolfpack guard on the other team.

Hampton's Anthony Barber, future Wolfpack guard, led his Virginia team with 26 points, 6 of which came in overtime. This was on 8-of-19 shooting, but 7-of-9 from the foul line. Despite a few key turnovers, Barber had a magnificent game in which he showed off some of his speed and ability to get to the basket. Cyonte Melvin added 9 points for the Crabbers, and Sammie Royal had 8 more.

Hampton will advance to play DeSoto High School of Texas tomorrow night at 7:20 pm. Cuthbertson will fall and play Kinston in a rematch of last year's State Championship. This game will be tomorrow at 2:20 pm.

END Q4, Hampton 48, Cuthbertson 48 : Several Hampton players were unable to finish easy chances around the rim, Anthony Barber lost the ball on a crucial play with 26 seconds left in the game, and Shelton Mitchell's Cuthbertson Cavaliers have battled back from nine down in the fourth quarter to force overtime. Both team's point guards have scored over 20 points.

Anthony Barber sprinted down the court on two occasions in the final minutes to set up his big men for easy points. Several times, these big men were unable to convert for the basket. Shelton Mitchell missed a game-winning shot at the buzzer that could have sealed the game.

END Q3, Hampton 35, Cuthbertson 26 : Defense has been the main story of the third quarter in this low-scoring contest. It has been difficult for multiple players to get involved on either team, and the two flashy point guards are continuing to put up big numbers.

For Hampton, Anthony Barber put up 10 of his team's 11 points in the period. He earned these 10 points through a combination of baseline jumpers and drives to the basket that put him on the line. The lone point of the half from another Hampton player was a single free throw from Jordan Baker.

For the Cavs, Shelton Mitchell was slowed significantly. However, he still scored 6 of his team's nine points. Hampton's Barber should look to remain a dominant offensive force to keep the Cavs from coming back in the 4th.

HALF, Hampton 24, Cuthbertson 17 : Hampton guard Anthony Barber has given Mark Gottfried and NC State fans some smiles in the first half of his teams matchup. The Crabbers have gotten out to a nice lead on the Cuthbertson Cavaliers, despite a solid showing from opposing Cav point guard Shelton Mitchell. While both team's defenses have left something to be desired after two periods, Barber and Mitchell have both been highlights for their teams.

Anthony Barber has 7 points so far, but has not shot well from the field. He's gotten a lot of help from fellow teammate DeShawn Valentine, who has 5 points. Jordan Baker and Cyonte Melvin have 4 each.

On the other end of the floor, Cuthbertson guard Shelton Mitchell has 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting. At one point in the game, Mitchell scored 9 straight points for the Cavs. Only two other Cuthbertson players have scored for the Cavs in the half.

END Q1, Hampton 15 Cuthbertson 10 : The guard matchup of Shelton Mitchell vs. Anthony Barber has worked in Hampton's favor during the opening quarter, as good team play has put them up by 5. The team has spread the ball around well, with Barber scoring 4 points. Shelton Mitchell of Cuthbertson leads the team with 6 points. Hampton has been slightly faster, scoring a few transition buckets and driving to the rim more effectively.

PREGAME: Back to the Summit Hospitality Bracket, Cuthbertson High School will face Hampton High School of Virginia. The winner of the game will meet DeSoto High School after the Texas team handled Kinson earlier today.

Cuthbertson High School, located an hour outside of Charlotte, is fresh off a State Championship appearance last season. Despite losing the championship to Kinston, the Cuthbertson Cavaliers return every player from last year's team. Among these experienced players is junior guard Shelton Mitchell. Mitchell averaged 24 points a game as a sophomore and scored in double-figures in each one of his contests last season.

Hampton has plenty of recent success as well, winning last year's Virginia 3A State Championship. Among the impressive players of the Hampton Crabber roster is Anthony Barber, Virginia's #1 recruit. Barber is also significant to today's North Carolina crowd, as the ESPN ranked 14th player in his class is a Wolfpack recruit. Barber is looking forward to joining NC State soon, but right now he is focused on leading his team on a run to defeat North Carolina schools and bring the Holiday Invitational title home to Virginia.

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