Mt. Savage beats Hancock to clinch league title

February 19, 1997


Staff Correspondent

HANCOCK - The Mount Savage Indians pulled away from the Hancock Panthers in the second half to record a 76-53 victory on Tuesday night in a Mid-Appalachian League boys' basketball game.

The victory enabled Mount Savage (11-7, 5-0) to clinch the Mid-Appalachian League championship for the second straight year.

Mount Savage led by only 30-26 at halftime.

But, during the first three minutes of the third quarter, the Indians outscored the Panthers 13-2 to increase their advantage to 43-28. However, Hancock put together a streak of nine consecutive points during the next two minutes, which was capped by a three-pointer from Justin Martinez, to narrow the gap to 43-37.

After that, Mount Savage outscored Hancock 8-4 for the last three minutes of the period to extend its lead to 51-41. Mike Brailer scored four of his six third-quarter points during the final three minutes for Mount Savage.


Brailer scored six more points during the fourth quarter as the Indians outscored the Panthers 25-12 to put the game away.

Despite only having seven of their eight players dressed, Mount Savage was still able to produce plenty of offensive firepower. Brailer and Cory Twigg scored 18 and 16 points, respectively, while Carl Crawford collected 15 points, 17 rebounds and four steals for the Indians. Bill O'Neal added 12 points, seven assists and six steals and Pat Robb had 11 points and 14 rebounds for Mount Savage.

"We figured out that we had to play better defense and get more rebounds during the second half," Mount Savage coach Gene Paul said. "We were even in rebounds in the first half. But then we outrebounded them 27-16 in the second half."

"Hancock made it close for a while to make it seem like a championship game," Paul added. "Even when we took that spurt in the third quarter, I knew that the Hancock kids wouldn't roll over."

Derek Hoffman collected 17 points, 11 rebounds and six blocked shots, while Martinez scored 10 points for Hancock (9-10, 4-2). Wesley Mosier added nine points and five rebounds.

"I just think that we need to understand that we have to play the full 32 minutes," Hancock coach Jeff Spielman said. "We have only done that a couple of times this year. We still have a chance to come out of here with a winning season."

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