DURHAM — The SJG Greater Pro-Am showcased the home talent in the league's semi-finals Wednesday night.
N.C. Central University teammates Dominique Sutton and Emanuel Chapman guided Team Jamison to a spirited 68-65 win over John Wall and the Triangle-G team at the McLendon-McDougald gymnasium on the NCCU campus.
Wall finished with 36 points but it wasn't enough against the NCCU duo.
"It means a lot to be out hear and enjoy the night," K-State transfer to NCCU, Sutton said.
The game started out easy and even but after a back and forth first 15 minutes, Team Jamison pulled away toward the end of the half for a 38-27 lead. Sutton and Chapman led the way with 11 points each. Chapman knocked down three 3-pointers, and Sutton drew the task of guarding Wall, who was held scoreless in the first half. Sutton was receiving encouragement from Rasheed Wallace from the stands.
"It's great to have Rasheed there. It's been a blessing," Sutton said.
Wall stepped it up in the second half with his team down opening the half with 5 straight points, cutting the lead down to six.
As the game progressed the intensity grew and the whistles became more frequent. Wall tried to carry Team G (5-6) back but the quicker Team Jamison (11-1) pushed relentlessly up the court and hustled back on defense.
Triangle G clawed its way back and Wall hit two 3-pointers, cutting the score to 55-52 with 5:17 left in the game.
Jamison built back the lead but then Sutton fouled out with 1:37 left and Team G cut the lead to 61-57 on a Stackhouse foul shot.
Sutton finished with 19 points.
"I'm playing with a chip on my shoulder. I feel like I've got something to prove after not having a chance at K-State," Sutton said.
Chapman's plus-1 and steal pushed to a 65-59 lead but Chapman turned it over and Wall converted on a plus-1 of his own to make it 65-62 with :38 seconds left.
Wall was forced to foul, but it was his sixth personal.
Joel Kendrid's free throw and basket off a missed 3 pointer made it 68-62. A goaltend on a three pointer closed the scoring at 68-65.
Losing player-coach Jerry Stackhouse summed up the night: "If anything it's about the kids and get these kids to play."
In the second game, Rasheed Wallace's turnaround jumper with 2 seconds left gave the undefeated Team Sheraton Imperial a 84-83 win over Nolan Smith's team, Next Level.
Next Level (5-7) with a few added players, took the big first-half lead, 52-40. Smith and former Word of God player Bishop Daniels led with 10 points each.
Team Sheraton (12-0) battled back behind last season's tourney MVP, Marcus Fisher. The experienced Fisher from the Norfolk, Va., area and Atlantic Coast Pro Basketball league player single-handedly carried his team back.
Fisher's basket tied the score at 67-67 with under four minutes left.
Next Level built a 5-point cushion with a minute left but it disappeared and Smith missed a free throw with 5 seconds left, leaving the score at 83-82 and Rasheed's heroics.