SNELLVILLE -- Berkmar's philosophy on defense is simple -- hold its opponent to 45 points (or less) and the Patriots feel they have a pretty good chance of winning.
And on Friday night, that philosophy became reality.
Berkmar's Yonel Brown hit a floater in the lane with 1.1 seconds left to lift Berkmar 46-45 over top-ranked Shiloh in a matchup between Region 8-AAAAA front runners.
Brown's shot capped off a tension-filled final 60 seconds that saw Shiloh (12-2, 8-1) let several opportunities slip away to put the game in the win column for the Generals.
Shiloh led 44-42 with 49 seconds left with Robert Carter going to the line for a one-and-one, only to see the senior standout hit the front end.
Berkmar (10-5, 8-1) cut the score to 45-44 with 26 seconds left when Tyler Rogers' put back off an offensive rebound.
Shiloh again found itself at the free throw line in the bonus with 15 seconds left, this time it was Jordan Chance taking the shots, but his front end was missed.
A.D. Rogers snared the rebound, setting up Berkmar's final possession and Brown's game-winning shot when Tim Rowe set a high screen to the right of the key, allowing Brown the room he needed to drive down the lane.
Instead of challenging Shiloh's big men inside, Brown opted for the right-handed floater, and it hit home cleanly.
"They went to zone on that play and then dropped back into man coverage," Berkmar head coach Greg Phillips said. "That was the look we were hoping to get."
Brown finished the night with 13 points and four rebounds, while Rowe led the team with 14 points and eight rebounds.
Along with Rowe, Rogers chipped in with 10 points and seven boards off the bench.
"Those two (Rowe and Rogers) had tremendous games," Phillips said. "We wouldn't have won without them."
Neither team was able to pull away from the other with Shiloh building the biggest lead of the night at five points early in the third.
Shiloh had hoped to take control inside with its size advantage in 6-foot-9 Carter and the seven-footer Trayvon Reed, but that plan took a big hit in the second quarter when Reed had to leave the game with a knee injury after landing funny when he threw down an ally-oop.
"We missed Trayvon after that second quarter," Shiloh head coach Kim Rivers said. "He tried to come back but just couldn't."
Shioh was led by Carter with 17 points and five rebounds, while Jordan Gaither scored 10 of his 14 points in the second half.
But Gaither's second-half surge wasn't enough as Berkmar's defense held Shiloh to just seven points in the final quarter, holding the Generals right at Berkmar's magic number of 45.
"We missed some free throws and didn't play as smart as we could have with the lead," Rivers said. "But I give all the credit to Berkmar because they were relentless. We've got a great rivalry going with them and have developed some great competition in our region."
Both teams started off slow by just scoring 11 points each in the first quarter. Carter put in nine of those for the Generals, while Brown's long 3-pointer at the buzzer knotted the score at 11-11.
Five different Generals scored in the second, but Berkmar countered with six points from Rowe as the Generals led by just one point at 23-22 at the break.
Shiloh showed signs of taking control in the third, especially on the quarter's final play when Carter cleared out the left side for the period's final shot, only to have him pass the ball to a wide-open Chance, who buried a 3-pointer at the buzzer for a 38-34 Shiloh lead.
Shiloh was able to push that lead to five at 41-36 with 5:56 left to play, but the Generals were only able to manage four more points.
"We pride ourselves when we can hold a team to 45," Phillips said. "We feel that when we do that, we have a good chance. It's a lofty goal but our guys are buying into it."
Berkmar girls 48, Shiloh 35
Berkmar received 14 points each from Daijah Cooke and Nina Williams as the Patriots went on to defeat Shiloh 48-35.
Shiloh got off to a slow start, scoring just four points in the first quarter and eight in the second as Berkmar took control with a 25-12 lead at the half.
Berkmar's offense was more productive in the second half with 23 points, but Shiloh matched that with 23 of its own.
Shiloh was led by eight points each from Raquel Cranston and Bria Ratliff.