Carrboro’s Chris Thompson dumped in a team high of 22 points as No. 19 Carrboro upset No. 3 Goldsboro, 82-73, in the second-round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 2-A boys’ basketball playoffs Thursday evening.
Throughout the game, Carrboro attacked the paint and played well against the Cougars’ press defense. More than two-thirds of Carrboro points came in the paint.
“We fought hard, and hats off to Carrboro, they really handled our pressure for the most part,” said Goldsboro head coach Jamal Croom.
In a back-and-forth first quarter, that saw multiple lead changes, the Cougars and the Jaguars kept exchanging body blows. By the end of the first quarter, it was all tied up 18-18.
However, in the second quarter, Goldsboro ran into some trouble. With four minutes remaining in the second quarter, Carrboro went on a 21-9 run and took a 45-33 halftime lead.
“The second quarter shifted the game a little bit,” said Croom. “We had a lot to overcome and by the time we started figuring it out, time wasn’t on our side.”
At the start of the third quarter, the Jaguars’ lead swelled to 56-37, but with four minutes remaining in the third quarter, the Cougars, led by senior guard Isaiah Wilder, went on a 10-2 run. Going into the fourth quarter, the Cougars were down 58-48.
In the fourth quarter, the Cougars gave it everything they had and managed to cut the Jaguars lead down to single digits twice, but the Jaguars remained poised down the stretch and held on to win the game.
“We cut it to single digits, but we couldn’t get the stops,” said Croom. “It’s tough, but I’m really happy with my guys. All season long, we’ve been battling, and we fought hard in this game but we dug ourselves in a hole we couldn’t climb out of.”
In his final game in a blue-and-maize uniform, Wilder paced the Cougars’ offense with game high of 38 points.
Christian Bullock contributed 16 points, while Xavion Atkinson supplied 10 points.
“Isaiah left it all out there, and he did exactly what a senior should do. He’s been our leader all year and he went out with a bang. He answered the call, and I’m extremely proud of him” said Croom. “I’m incredibly proud of all the players because they worked extremely hard this year and they accomplished some great things this season.
“We’ll be back. Trust me, we’ll be back.”