AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Andrew and Aaron Harrison can take a Texas state championship medal with them all the way to Kentucky.
Andrew Harrison scored 16 points and the All-American twin guards guided Fort Bend Travis to a 46-38 win over South Grand Prairie for the class 5A title Saturday night.
The Harrisons, two of the highest-rated recruits in the country, have both signed to play with Kentucky. Travis (33-5) is the first 5A team to win the title the season after losing in the championship game.
“It makes it sweeter because we lost last year,” said Andrew Harrison, who was named the game’s most valuable player. “Every great player wants to win a state championship. I felt it was our duty to do that.”
Andrew Harrison made 9 of 14 free throws and grabbed nine rebounds. Aaron Harrison, who turned his ankle in the opening seconds of the game but kept playing, scored eight points on 3 of 16 shooting.
Ben Emelogu scored 13 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for South Grand Prairie (37-3).
“It’s been a long, long road. We finally made it,” Aaron Harrison said. “Losing this game wouldn’t have defined our high school career, but it ended it the right way.”
Even with the talented twins on the court, the game was a sloppy affair with poor shooting and was one of the lowest-scoring championship games in 5A tournament history. Fort Bend Travis made just 12 field goals and South Grand Prairie made 13 on 26 percent shooting.
Aaron Harrison grabbed the first rebound of the game but turned an ankle and limped through the next few minutes. He struggled to jump and his first shot, a 3-pointer, was blocked by Emelogu. Harrison briefly left the court to get treatment and went 0-6 shooting in the first quarter with several shots coming up short.
Travis led 6-5 after the first quarter as South Grand Prairie missed 18 of its first 20 shots. The scoring picked up in the second as Andrew Harrison and Emelogu traded 3-pointers and Travis took a 20-19 lead into halftime.
The spotty shooting returned in the third and South Grand Prairie continued to stymie the Harrisons with a defense that denied them lanes to drive to the basket. But Travis took its time on every possession as the guards dribbled around the perimeter, probing for an opening for a drive or a pass. Travis opened a 29-21 lead when John Burnett made a 3-pointer and Aaron Harrison’s steal at midcourt led to a layup.
South Grand Prairie got a 3-pointer from Trey Hall to cut the lead to five to start the fourth and pulled within 31-29 on a 3-pointer from Dante James.
Aaron Harrison put Travis ahead 34-29 with a layup and free throw and Travis pushed the lead to 37-29 with just over three minutes to play. At that point, there was no reason for Travis to get out of its slow-down and the Tigers kept working valuable seconds off the clock.
South Grand Prairie’s last gasp came when Aaron Harrison fouled Emelogu on a 3-pointer and the 4-point play cut Travis’ lead to 39-36 with 1:22 to play.