02/15/14 — Princeton boys stay in title hunt

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Princeton boys stay in title hunt

By Kenneth Fine
Published in Sports on February 15, 2014 11:13 PM


PRINCETON -- When Rosewood's Ethan Chapin drained a 3-pointer to cut Princeton's lead to four with less than two minutes remaining in Friday's game between the archrivals, Bulldogs head coach Jeff Davis flashed back to the last meeting less than three weeks ago.

Chapin's 3 behind the arc gave the Eagles a double-overtime win in a game the Bulldogs led most of the way.

"I said, 'Here we go again,'" Davis said.

But this time, Princeton -- despite missing 10 free throws in the second half -- held on to win 67-60 and climb to 15-7 overall and 10-3 in Carolina 1-A Conference play.

"At this point in the year ... you just want to win," Davis said. "Anytime you can get a conference win and beat your rival, it's a good night."

The Bulldogs delivered a victory on senior night thanks to strong performances by Colby Norris, Alex Whitley and Tanner Woodard. Norris and Whitley scored 16 points apiece, while Woodard added 12 and eight rebounds.

But despite what Davis characterized as a "phenomenal" offensive performance, particularly in the first half, Rosewood's 10 3-pointers -- and a 14-point, 18-rebound outing from Dennis Mitchell -- kept the Eagles in it until the very end.

Princeton kept its regular-season conference title hopes alive. In order to raise a banner, they will need some help.

Neuse Charter and James Kenan would both have to lose again this season and Princeton would have to go undefeated down the stretch to give the Bulldogs the tiebreaker.

Neuse and Kenan play each other Thursday.

"If we beat Lakewood (Monday) ... we still have a chance. We would love to have a three-way tie, because we'd get the tiebreaker," Davis said. "We need some help ... but maybe we can get it done.

"We'll see."