The Championship Game of the 2014 P.I.T.S League featured a matchup between a team everyone expected to be there and a newfound crowd favorite. Would Jamar & Rob’s Mob get that third consecutive title, a three-peat so to speak? Or, would those young upstarts aka the Outsiders make league history by dethroning both of the top teams in the entire league in one playoff run? While every regular season game and every postseason game prior to the championship game featured hybrid rules and two 20 minute halves, the championship game was four quarters and NBA rules.
The first two quarters of this game were very exciting, but it’s not where the game was won for either team. The Outsiders got out to a quick lead, the youngsters seemed to bother Rob’s Mob with their length and defensive activity. Bobby Maze was a mismatch for the Outsiders as he really led the way for Rob’s Mob…not only keeping them in the game, but even leading his team to a one point halftime lead, 40-39. Wayne Chism played a big role as well, the former Tennessee Volunteers led the way.
The second half. Is. Where. The. Game. Began.
While Bobby and Wayne were producing for Rob’s Mob, Demarr Johnson was struggling from the floor. Steph Battle was a matchup nightmare for Drew’s All Stars, that didn’t change as Rob’s Mob had a tough time finding an able defender as well. Both teams were scoring at the start of the third quarter, as neither team could generate consecutive stops on the defensive end. With the game tied at 57, DJ catches the ball on the perimeter. After a quick jab step to get his defender to take a false step, he exploded down the baseline and finished with a two handed slam. It wouldn’t have been right if the Outsiders didn’t respond to the mini run by Rob’s Mob, the kids did just that and tied the game with 25 seconds left in the quarter. “Mama there goes that man.” Never has that Mark Jackson statement been more appropriate than in the actions that followed. Rob’s Mob held the ball to take the last shot of the quarter, Bobby Maze threw the ball to DJ in the post before getting it right back. Set up on the right wing, Maze creates separation from his defender with a HARD between the legs dribble…before calmly stepping back and drilling a cold-blooded three pointer as the buzzer sounds. His team would lead the Outsiders 64-61 heading into the fourth and final quarter.
The Outsiders started the last period with a bang, Tay Twyman was stripped of the ball while attacking the basket. That led to a three pointer by Rodney Clarke which tied the game, Bobby brings the ball down court and hits Tay for a wide open three of his own. Steph attacks the basket yet again, resulting in a trip to the charity stripe. He splits the pair, Mr. Maze responds for Rob’s Mob again getting a three points the old fashioned way. The Rodney-Bobby matchup escalated after Rodney hit a three in Bobby’s face and proceeded to tell him about it. The two get into a bit of a one-on-one battle in the next couple of possessions which leads to very sloppy play. The Outsiders get a one point lead after another turnover by Rob’s Mob, but it was short lived as Bobby responded with an acrobatic reverse layup. Rodney didn’t waste anytime with his response, after being hounded up court by “White Chocolate,” he took and sank a three to give his team a two point lead. Clarke wasn’t done as he hit another three, may have gotten fouled as there was definitely contact on the shot, but no call from the officials.
Bobby Maze attacks the basket again off the bounce, may have gotten away with a walk, but he got fouled and hit both of his free throws. The score is 79-77 in favor of the Outsiders, just under two minutes left in the Championship game. The crowd is now fully behind the Outsiders, as a Waldorf chant breaks out. Rodney misses a three pointer and Tay Twyman pushes the ball in transition and finishes with a spectacular layup between two defenders. He was fouled on the layup attempt, resulting in an and-1 opportunity, he hit the free throw to give his team a one point lead. Nate Flowers falls on a drive, gets called for a travel and gives the ball back to Rob’s Mob with 1:13 left in the game. Rodney is guarding Bobby down the court on the following possession, Clarke appears to knock the ball away from Maze but is whistled for a foul. Bobby goes to the line and splits the pair, giving Rob’s Mob a two point lead.
Demarr Johsnon gets fouled attacking the basket, it easily could have been seen as a blocked shot, but he headed to the line with a chance to extend the lead to four for Rob’s Mob. DJ looked as if he’s been there before (he has) and knocks down both shots. The Outsiders are down by four, Rodney had hit several big three pointers in the half and attempted another on this possession, but Bobby not only contested the shot, but grabbed the ball out of the air with both hands and threw it ahead to DJ for the slam. It’s now a six point lead for Rob’s Mob, it looked like the Outsiders were done. That wasn’t the case as Mike (#3) takes a three at the top of the circle for the Outsiders….he got fouled and the shot went in!! He has a chance to get a four point play, he knocked down the free throw and the Outsiders are down just two points.
Now, the foul game must be played. The Outsiders foul Tay, he goes to the line and splits the pair which gives Rob’s Mob an 86-83 point lead. Which lead to what may have been the worst offensive possession from the young team over the course of the entire season, it was sloppy and poorly executed, it resulted in a wide open three by Roy. Ordinarily this wouldn’t have been a bad shot, but Roy had been on the bench for the past eight minutes or so. It’s tough to take that shot after you’ve been sitting out for an extended period of time, as expected Roy missed horribly and the Outsiders had to foul. “Supa” Dave went to the line, but he split the pair giving his team a four point lead. The Outsiders call time out so they can advance the ball, once again a bad offensive possession results in a rushed shot and Rodney’s contested three fell short.
Rob’s Mob became the first team in league history to win three consecutive titles!! It was a great game and the winning team was truly deserving of the trophy and title! The young Outsiders opened up many eyes, they won’t catch anyone by surprise next season.