NORTH AUGUSTA — With Theo Pinson’s blocks either coming on an attempted 3-pointer or leading to a fast break, the player isn’t hard to miss with all that athleticism.
But, if for some reason, he was difficult to find, chances are all it took was a glance to the free-throw line if his team had the ball.
The North Carolina commit scored 17 of his 23 points at the foul line as the CP3 All-Stars (N.C.) beat the Meanstreets (Ill.) 65-60 Friday in the Nike Peach Jam at North Augusta’s Riverview Park Activities Center.
Both teams were 2-0 going into the game, but Pinson’s two free throws with 20.2 seconds remaining helped secure the win.
“I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” Pinson said about standing at the foul line late in a game. “I wanted those free throws bad. I had a good streak going, and I just wanted to finish it off with a bang to win a game.”
The five-star, Class of 2014 recruit used the impressive 17-for-18 shooting at the line to offset a 3-for-12 shooting performance from the floor. He also had nine rebounds and blocked three shots.
Besides Pinson, three other players reached double-digit points, with the Meanstreets’ Paul White, a four-star prospect, putting up 20. White’s eight field goals were exactly half of the CP3 All-Stars’ entire team total.
But the CP3 All-Stars were still sometimes dangerous in transition and provided impressive plays. First, L.J. Peak slid in for a one-armed slam dunk. Later, Pinson got hold of the ball and immediately flung it up the court to Peak, who got in another dunk.
Though the Meanstreets trailed almost the entire game, they nearly stole a win in the final minute. Tyler Wideman made two free throws with 1:08 showing to cut it to 62-60, but the Meanstreets went cold from 3. In fact, the two squads shot a combined 2-for-28 from distance.
“We gave a good effort defensively,” CP3 All-Stars coach Andy Poplin said. “That helps us all the way around. When the defense is good, the shot selection is better. It all kind of works together.”