By Patrick McGavin
DeVante Jones practices the shot all the time. We practice shooting, and we try to get a thousand shots up every day, the Orr senior guard said.Jones drilled a game-breaking three-pointer from the left wing with just over three minutes remaining that powered the host No. 9 Spartans past No. 22 Farragut 54-43 in a second-round Public League Playoff showdown Friday afternoon.Seconds after Farragut star Rashaun Stimage missed the front end of a one and one, Jones caught the ball on the break and fired in the 20-footer for a 48-43 Orr lead. In the third quarter, he hit a three-pointer from an identical location.Orr scored the games final eight points.I had a lot of faith and desire that the shot was going to go in, Jones said. Jones and senior guard Deshawn King combined for five three-pointers in the second half that erased a 27-24 Farragut halftime lead.Jones and King scored 13 points apiece for the Spartans (18-3), who advance against in Sundays quarterfinals against the winner of the ForemanLane game at Chicago State.With Jamal McDowell, the Orr guards also shut down Farraguts own perimeter attack. Senior Farragut guard John Carter hit three three-pointers and scored 13 points n the first half as the Admirals led by as many as eight points (27-19) in the first half.Carter was held scoreless and Farragut guard Lavell Boyd was limited to just five points. We take a lot of pride and competition in our defense, Jones said. We play the right defense, getting into our stances and getting the right position.We feel like we can shut down any backcourt in the state.With the Spartans up 39-37 to start the fourth quarter, King converted a rare four-point play. During an odd stretch, both teams combined to miss 12 consecutive free throws. Farragut went 0 of 10 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter. It shot just 1 of 12 for the game. Orr was finished 10 of 21. After committing just seven turnovers through the first three quarters, Farragut turned it over five times in the final quarter.Senior Deonte Terrell, who scored 10 points, scored on a drive and was fouled with 3:21 that cut the Orr lead to 45-43. The Admirals never scored again. The repeated missed free throws and inability to score meant the Admirals could never apply their press. Thats the craziest thing Ive ever seen, Farragut coach William Nelson said. If we make our free throws, we win the game. Orr missed a lot of free throws, too, but they made some. Everybody missed.Stimage nearly recorded a triple-double by scoring 13 points, blocking 11 shots and grabbing nine rebounds. His counterpart, Orr 6-7 junior Marquise Pryor, scored eight of his 12 points in the second half. He added 10 rebounds.The Orr guards were the story. Orr never had a name in basketball before, and were trying to change that, King said.
By Patrick McGavin