MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) – Tournament MVP Bo Hodges scored 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds in leading Maplewood to its first state championship, 60-57 over Knoxville Catholic in the Tennessee Class AA boys final on Saturday.
Hodges, a Mr. Basketball and an East Tennessee State signee, scored on a layup with 1:50 left after Knoxville Catholic (31-2) cut the deficit to two.
Maplewood (29-7) gave Metro Nashville its first state title since 1996 when Martin Luther King took the AA championship.
“Bo and I had a conversation last summer and the main thing we talked about was bringing the gold back to Nashville and bringing it back to Maplewood,” Panthers coach Ty Wilson said after Friday’s semifinal win over Haywood.
The Fighting Irish narrowed the deficit to one before a layup by Robert Wilcox III completed the scoring.
Wilcox and Hassan Littlepage both added 12 points and Hodges’ younger brother, Timotheus, posted 11 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
The Irish’s 28-game win streak ended with their third runner-up finish, including 1974 and 1976.
Brock Jancek, a 6-foot-7 junior, led Knoxville Catholic with 16 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots. Davari Reeder scored 11 and Luke Smith, a Mr. Basketball finalist, added 10.
Maplewood enjoyed an 11-2 advantage in second-chance points and Knoxville Catholic went 4 of 18 from 3-point range.