February 1, 2009

VIDEO: Appling goes on scoring spree in loss

DETROIT - When Detroit Pershing played Public School League rival Southeastern the first time this winter, the No. 1 rated Doughboys had little difficulty dispatching the Jungaleers. When the two teams met on Southeastern's turf, Pershing left the court with their lone loss of the season.

Southeastern's win over Pershing was not without controversy. With 5.1 seconds remaining and Pershing trailing by three points, the Doughboys inbounded the ball to 2010 Michigan State commitment Keith Appling, who dribbled past the mid-court stripe and hoisted a deep 3-pointer that found the bottom of the net with 1.2 seconds left.

That triple brought the Pershing bench to their feet and the Doughboys were in celebration mode before Appling and his coaches were informed that the triple would not count. Officials determined that Southeastern's Brandan Kearney had fouled Appling before the future Spartan had released what at-first appeared to be a field goal that would put the game into overtime.

Instead of preparing for an extra period, Appling was forced to go to the free-throw line to shoot a 1-and-1.

Whether or not Appling's triple should have counted is up for debate. Video shot by SpartanMag.com staffer Rico Beard appears to show the official who called the foul blowing his whistle while Appling was in the act of shooting. Appling appears to be in the act of shooting when he was fouled by Kearney.

Regardless of the outcome, Appling put on an electrifying performance. It was easily one of the best individual efforts of the season by a guard thus far.

The 6-foot-3, 175-pound future Spartan finished the game with 35 points. He also recorded 6 assists, 4 steals, and 8 rebounds for the Doughboys. Appling was perfect at the free-throw line where he was 10-for-10.

When Pershing and Southeastern played at Pershing on January 6, the Doughboys rolled to a 70-48 victory. In the two team's first meeting, Spartan commitment Derrick Nix was a force in the paint and kept the Jungaleers' talented young big men Percy Gibson and Will Gholston in check.

Nix had a double-double in Pershing's first meet with Southeastern. But the 6-foot-9, 285-pound Spartan signee finished the second meeting with just six points to which he added a dozen rebounds. Nix missed most of the second quarter after picking up his third foul early in the period. During his absence, Gibson scored 11 of his 20 points. Gibson also had 12 rebounds in the victory.

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