IN A REVERSE of the old saying, Luke Eddy taketh away, but then nearly giveth back.
And then in one big swish, he knocketh out the state's No. 1 team.
The junior point guard shined on the biggest stage in the final minute of George Washington's 53-51 victory Friday over top-ranked Martinsburg, scoring 20 points and hitting the game-winning shot.
For the defending champions, it was a moment every bit as dramatic as the end of last year's AAA final, when officials viewed the monitor and ruled Wheeling Park's Bubby Goodwin's final shot was good for two points instead of three.
Eddy's efforts were front and center for most of the final minute, broken down into three decisive plays.
GW had fought its way to a 51-51 tie on a Tino diTrapano free throw with 1:15 left. Martinsburg got the ball over halfcourt and called timeout with 1:07 left.
Whatever Bulldog coach Dave Rogers drew up, we'll never know, for Eddy leaped for the inbounds pass from Jalen Lewis and tapped it to himself. For the first time, GW fans truly smelled an upset.
Coach Rick Greene called timeout with 37 seconds left. He wanted Eddy to milk the clock before playing for the final shot. To brutally twist another saying, the milk almost spilt in Martinsburg's favor, and left the Patriots crying.
The Bulldogs' Jordan Robinson tapped the ball away, setting up the game's most important "50-50" ball. Eddy gave up 3 inches to the 6-foot-4 Robinson and probably a half-step in speed, but somehow, someway, slid to the ball first. He cradled the rock just enough to call a timeout.
"That last play's on me," Greene said. "You can do a lot of different things; trying to hold the ball, especially against a team that athletic. But that's how much confidence we have in Luke or the other guards, if they would have stepped out."
With that timeout, Greene kept his confidence in the point guard, and it was rewarded. Eddy shook off Robinson and squeezed off a 17-foot jumper, which hit nothing but net.
Eddy was downright sheepish about his confidence on the shot - "I really don't know what to say," he said at one point - but his coach and teammates know better. I know better - of his 15 shots at the basket, I didn't see one fired tentatively.
Eddy's performance was no surprise to Rogers.