In front of a capacity crowd at Coolidge High School in Washington, DC, Montrose Christian trailed by double digits in the 4th quarter before mounting a comeback which culminated with a buzzer-beating putback by junior guard Adrian Bowie to give Montrose a 74-72 win.
The game featured two Maryland-bound seniors in Montrose guard Greivis Vasquez and Oak Hill forward Landon Milbourne. Oak Hill is so talent-rich that Milbourne came off the bench to score five points for The Warriors. Vasquez starts for Montrose Christian.
In a game with enough division 1 prospects to fill an entire college team, the fiery Vasquez proved he belonged on the same court with such talented players and then some. The Venezuela native scored 17 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the floor and 4-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc to help lead Montrose Christian to the upset victory.
But it was perhaps his emotional intensity and defense in the 4th quarter that was most important to his team on this night. With UNC-bound point guard Tywon Lawson pretty much having his way with the Montrose defense, Vasquez insisted that he be allowed to guard his future ACC foe.
“I was pretty mad,” said Vasquez after the game. “I said I need to play ‘D’ on him. I went to the coach and I said ‘coach, let me guard him.’”
Vasquez not only did a good job of slowing down the previously unstoppable Lawson, he also started talking non-stop in an attempt to get into Lawson’s head. The two were jawing at each other during play, when neither had the ball, and even during dead ball situations.
“I was trying to mess with his mind,” Vasquez said, adding how much respect he has for Lawson’s game. “He is too good, he is too talented. I just [think] he’s really good. I think I played good ‘D’ on him.”
All the talking seemed to work as Lawson cooled off considerably in the 4th quarter with Vasquez hounding him. Vasquez also lead Montrose Christian’s emotional charge during the comeback, often times pounding his chest or gesturing to the crowd after a Montrose score. Vasquez says he always plays the game with emotion.
“I love basketball – ever since I was little. I play with passion and I love the game.”