Memphis (Tenn.) Ridgeway, No. 9 in the latest RivalsHigh Top 100 boys basketball rankings, had overcome many obstacles to win its first 21 games of the season. Friday night, it went up against one thing it couldn't control: Senior night.
Germantown (Tenn.) High, playing its final home game of the season, got a solid effort from start to finish producing a surprisingly easy 78-63 victory.
"I put two things on the board tonight," Germantown coach Newton Mealer explained to the Memphis Commercial Appeal(read its story here). "First, that it was senior night and we needed to play with emotion. But I also said that we needed a signature win, and we didn't want to wait until the district tournament to have to get it. Beating the No. 1 team in the state gives us immediate respect."
It got it behind four seniors as Jordan Hulsey and Todd Mayo had 19 points, Andre Hollins added 14 and Chris Pollard had nine.
Germantown (23-6) jumped to an early 12-1 lead and maintained its edge throughout by going 28-for-36 from the line during the game.
Ridgeway, meanwhile, could never find its game.
"When it counts, you have to make big shots, and you have to make free throws," Ridgeway coach Wes Henning said. "We did neither."
Memphis commit Tarik Black finished with 18 points but eight came in the final quarter, when the game was out of reach.
Henning can only hope the loss pays off in the end.
"This might be a blessing," he said. "It's tough to take that goose egg in the loss column into the post-season."