BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Allonzo Trier really knows how to spoil a party.
With the Barclays Center crowd roaring every time local favorite Isiah Briscoe of Roselle (N.J.) Catholic touched the ball, Trier hit what turned out to be the winning free throws and finished with a game-high 28 points Friday to lead the West to a 118-116 victory at the Jordan Brand Classic.
After the opening moments, the West led most of the way, stretching the lead to 16 in the second half. The East, led by Cheick Diallo of Our Savior New American (Centereach, N.Y.) with 26 points and 11 rebounds and by Briscoe with 22 points, six rebounds and six assists, chipped away at the lead until a Briscoe layup gave the East a 105-103 lead with 3:27 to play. From there, Trier, a Seattle native playing for Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.), had five points at the line to ice the game.
“We made a response as soon as they got close every time today,” said Trier. “We knew we didn’t want to give up the lead and they were close to getting it, but we were relentless.”
Trier, an Arizona signee, was nursing a sore lip afterward, courtesy of what he said was a head butt by Briscoe. Trier was an efficient 8-for-10 on the floor and 11-for-16 at the line and was the West’s Most Valuable Player.
“I didn’t try to force things,” Trier said. “I just tried to make plays. Make the pass when someone was open and shoot when I’m open and make the right plays for our team.”
Diallo, who is being recruited heavily by Syracuse, among many other major schools, wasn’t answering recruiting questions afterward. He was the MVP of the winning team at the McDonald’s All American Game and this time was the MVP of the losing team.
“I’m just so excited. There were a lot of people who came to support me,” he said. “But, it’s an All-Star game, not a team game. Some people pass the ball to you and some of them don’t.”
While the West squad was missing LSU signee Ben Simmons, who skipped the game to recuperate from a busy season, the East squad had three players who sat out with injuries or soreness: Jaylen Brown of Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.), the top uncommitted prospect in the 2015 class; Marquette signee Henry Ellenson; and Duke signee Luke Kennard.
“I think it would have made a difference,” said East player Skal Labissiere, who has signed with Kentucky and finished with 11 points and 12 rebounds. “We had 10 players and they had 13.”
The East squad had a hard time slowing the West in the first half as the West shot 52.9% from the floor, led by Oregon-bound Tyler Dorsey (Maranatha; Pasadena, Calif.) and Trier, who each had 11 points and only missed three shots between them.
Briscoe, a Kentucky signee who is from Newark, said that Carmelo Anthony, who attended the game and handed out the MVP awards, teased him afterward about the loss in front of his hometown fans.
“First he said, ‘I don’t know how you all lost’ and then he said, ‘It’s never good to lose in New York City,’ ” Briscoe said. “I hoped I could have (gotten the win), but it didn’t turn out like I wanted it to.”