There were no defenders in his sightline or hands in the way when J.J. Epps prepared for the biggest shots of his career.
The junior point guard is accustomed to slicing between defenders a foot or more taller, so he said he felt no pressure as he went to shoot free throws with third-ranked Magruder trailing by one point in the final minute of the Maryland 4A championship game.
Epps made both free throws with 43 seconds left, then sealed the victory by making two more with 4.6 seconds left and added a steal on 12th-ranked Eleanor Roosevelt’s final chance, leading the Colonels to a 39-36 victory before 11,265 at Comcast Center on Saturday night.
“Just got to hit them if we want to win,” Epps said.
Two nights after scoring six of his 16 points in overtime to lead the Colonels to their state semifinal victory, Epps finished with 13 points as the Colonels won their second state title.