The senior guard came alive scoring 22 points in the second half against the Hawks to turn a 10-point halftime deficit into a 72-70 victory for the Thunderbirds.
"I kept my head up," Freeman said. "I was worried about a lot of calls and stuff in the first half and the coaching staff told me to keep my head up."
Freeman said he is still getting used to the attention he gets from opposing defenses, but the Thunderbirds leading scorer seems to be adjusting well.
"This is the first year people have kind of face-guarded me and not helped off me," he said. "It takes a little time. I'm finally getting used to it and knowing how to prepare for teams like that."
Mountlake Terrace jumped out to a 9-1 lead and controlled the first half. The Hawks held Freeman to just four points, while Greg Bowman and Yoel Tekle scored 11 and 10 points respectively to take a 33-23 lead into the locker room.
Momentum swung in favor of the Thunderbirds almost immediately in the third quarter. The backcourt of Brandon Mar and Freeman led Shorewood on an 8-0 to get back in the game.
"We've talked to these guys a lot about the next play," Shorewood coach Kevin Faw said. "There's a lot of plays in basketball and you've got to move on to the next play. That's something that wasn't happening in the first half and I kind of tore into them at halftime and really talked about that.
"That's what I think the biggest change was, those guys coming together as a team and keeping their heads up and moving to the next play every time."
Mountlake Terrace maintained its lead throughout the third quarter, but the Thunderbirds were able to stay within striking distance.
In the fourth quarter, they made their move.
Freeman's fadeaway with 5:28 to play in the game gave Shorewood its first lead of the night at 53-52. The Hawks briefly took it back with a spinning lay up by Loren Lacasse before the Thunderbirds used an 11-0 run to take control of the game for good.
With his team struggling and quickly seeing a lead turn into as much as a 10-point deficit in the final minutes, Mountlake Terrace head coach Nalin Sood didn't call a timeout.
"They've got to work through something on the court," Sood said. "I don't think we did, in hindsight maybe I would have called a timeout, but I think when February comes around hopefully I will be glad I didn't call that timeout. Where's the ownership? Where's the leadership? Where's the team accountability that we've got to fix this guys?"
The Hawks trimmed the deficit to one on an Isaiah Green three with 5.6 seconds remaining and tried to immediately foul after a timeout. The Thunderbirds were able to dribble away from the intentional foul and take nearly five seconds off the clock before Mountlake Terrace finally fouled with 0.7 seconds remaining. Shorewood's Jordan Muir-Keung made the first free throw and purposefully missed the second. Gabe Altenberger grabbed the rebound, but his nearly full court heave fell short as time expired.
Aaron Lommers covers prep sports for The Herald. Follow him on twitter @aaronlommers and contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At Shorewood H.S.
Mountlake Terrace 19 14 14 23 -- 70
Shorewood 13 10 19 28 -- 72
Mountlake Terrace--Isaiah Green 9, Yonnas Tewolde 5, Prescott Day 0, Gabe Altenberger 0, Matthew Moisant 2, Greg Bowman 21, Loren Lacasse 21, Yoel Tekle 12. Shorewood--Anxhelos Pere 2, Taylor Freeman 26, Brandon Mar 19, Jordan Muir-Keung 6, Karson Gronvold 2, Zane Hopen 11, Cameran Testerman 0, Sam Boone 6. 3-point goals--Green 3, Lacasse 3, Freeman 2, Hopen 2. Records--Mountlake Terrace 2-1 league, 7-2 overall. Shorewood 3-1, 8-3
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