The underdogs almost made a clean sweep of it Thursday night. Fifth-seeded Dunedin scored 37 second-half points to erase a six-point halftime lead and upset fourth-seeded Largo 66-61 in first-round action of the Class 4A, District 7 boys basketball tournament at Clearwater High School.
Meanwhile, third-ranked Seminole (19-10) was taken to the limit by No. 6 Pinellas Park (8-18). The Warhawks had to overcame a horrific first quarter, when they were outscored 14-6, in order to beat the No. 6 Patriots 61-53.
The top two seeds, Clearwater and Countryside, had first-round byes.
The Patriots looked unstoppable in the first half, jumping out to a 14-2 lead. But things improved for the Warhawks in the second quarter when they scored more points in the first three minutes than they did in all of the first quarter. Still, Pinellas Park, behind the hot shooting of Greg Roberson, was able to take a 10-point lead at the half.
Roberson scored 10 second-quarter points and finished the game with 24.
The Warhawks tried to chip away at the Patriots' lead in the third quarter, but Pinellas Park answered each Seminole score with one of their own.
But the fourth quarter was all Seminole. The Warhawks ran off nine unanswered points and outscored the Patriots 24-7 to advance into today's semifinal.
In the night's second game, Dunedin (12-18) jumped out to a 17-13 lead against Largo (17-12) after the first quarter. But the Falcons fell behind the Packers by as many as nine points late in the second quarter.
But Zane Morris scored Dunedin's first seven second-half points and pulled the Falcons to within two, 38-36. From that point on, the two teams traded the lead until late in the fourth quarter when Dunedin scored the game's final six points to seal the win.
The fifth-seeded Falcons were paced by Morris' 21 points, while Largo's Gerald Jones led all scorers with 26.
Dunedin will play Countryside tonight at 6:30. Seminole plays top-seeded Clearwater at 8.
Sarasota Riverview tops Dixie Hollins in 4A-8
BRADENTON _ Dixie Hollins let a four-point lead in the final minute slip away and the Rebels fell to Sarasota Riverview 60-59 in the quarterfinals of the Class 4A, District 8 boys basketball tournament Thursday night at Manatee High School.
Dankey Robinson's jumper from the baseline with two seconds to play won the game for the Rams.
Leading 59-57 with 13 seconds left, Dixie Hollins went to a stalling offense. The strategy backfired when center Dametri Hill caught a pass and then stepped out of bounds.
On the change of possession, Dixie Hollins' Joe Archie fouled Riverview's Lawrence Mathews with eight seconds left. Mathews then hit the first end of the one-and-one but missed the second. His second shot bounced away from the rim and Riverview's Jason Possehl got a piece of the rebound with a Dixie Hollins player.
The possession arrow went to Riverview, and then Robinson was able to hit his winning shot.
_ Times correspondent Steven Gotfried contributed to this report.