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March 7, 2010
No. 24 Winter Park wins state title
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Austin Rivers picked a good night to have another solid performance.
With his father - Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers - in the stands, the junior guard poured in 23 points, leading No. 24 Winter Park (Florida) High to its first-ever state championship, 76-57, over Orlando (Fla.) Dr. Phillips on Saturday.
"I've been dreaming about this every since I was a little kid," Rivers told the Orlando Sentinel. "Now my sister can't be the only one in the house to have a state (championship)."
Callie Rivers, Austin's older sister, scored a state championship on the volleyball court during her scholastic career.
But Rivers wasn't the only player on top of his game on Saturday. Robert Lovaglio scored 17 points and had 10 rebounds.
And Brett Comer, who missed the team's semifinal game after being hospitalized on Thursday with possible food poisoning, returned to the court in a big way, playing all but two minutes. He finished with 14 points and seven steals.
"I feel great now," Comer told the Sentinel. "Can't feel better than this. I had to feel good for this."
Winter Park (28-5) led by just two, 26-24, at the half, but used a 24-point third quarter to build a nine-point lead heading into the final period. The margin was extended to 12 when Rivers hit a deep 3-pointer with 7:07 left. It was never close after that.
Dr. Phillips (27-6) was led by guard Shane Larkin (15 points), whose father, Barry, was the longtime shortstop of the Cincinnati Reds.
"They executed their offense and made big shots," Larkin told the Sentinel. "We could never get back into the game."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.