Coming into Tuesday night with an 11-13 record, Lockport was searching for a confidence boost with the playoffs right around the corner.
The Porters got a big one on the road, going into Bolingbrook and stunning the SouthWest Suburban Blue champion Raiders 49-46.
“We’re going into regionals and this gives us some more motivation for the playoffs,” Lockport’s Grover Anderson said. “It gives us something to be proud of.”
Down 22-19 at the half, the Porters (12-13, 6-7) outscored Bolingbrook (19-5, 11-2) 11-4 in the third – as the Raiders made just 1-of-11 shots from the field in the period – then held on late for the victory.
Anderson and John Campbell (10 rebounds) scored 14 points each for the Porters, who avenged a 61-35 Jan. 24 loss to Bolingbrook.
Prentiss Nixon and Gage Davis had 11 points each for the Raiders, who had already locked up the outright Blue crown after beating Homewood-Flossmoor on Friday.
Campbell missed the front end of a one-and-one with Lockport leading 42-38 and just under two minutes to go, but went 6-for-6 from the line over the final 57 seconds to seal the win.
“I was just thinking ‘I have to make these free throws,’” he said. “The game is won or lost with free throws.”
The Raiders closed within three on Nixon’s trey with 15 seconds to go and within one when Brodric Thomas hit a triple with 1.4 seconds to go, but it was too little, too late.
Lockport, utilizing a pesky zone defense and a patient, efficient offense, outscored the Raiders 9-0 over the final 2:18 of the third and first 1:50 of the fourth to go ahead 35-26. Anderson scored on a pair of drives and Deiondre Taylor canned a three-pointer during the surge.
The second half was a far cry from the first six minutes, when Bolingbrook beat the Porters up on the boards and jumped to an 11-3 lead.
“Early on, the kids were looking at me like ‘Coach, we have to go man to man’” Lockport coach Larry Thompson Jr. said. “I knew we couldn’t do it. We stuck with the zone and it paid off.”
Josh Dillingham and Kenny Williams had eight points each for Bolingbrook.
“I said before the game that this was the perfect trap game,” Bolingbrook coach Rob Brost said. “We weren’t hitting shots. We want to play inside-out and (Lockport) wouldn’t let us do it.
“We’ve got to move forward. We’ll be fine.”