Williamsport upset in 1A West

March 06, 1997


Staff Correspondent

CUMBERLAND, Md. - During the regular season, Williamsport's boys' basketball team could win by accomplishing just two out of three team goals.

But that didn't work Wednesday night, as Westmar upset the Wildcats, 39-34, in the Class 1A West region semifinals at Allegany High School.

The loss snapped Williamsport's 18-game winning streak.

"I felt like there were three things we needed to do to win," a disappointed Wildcats coach Kevin Murphy said. "First, we needed to take away the easy hoops, and I think we did that. Second, we needed to play good defense, and I think we did that, too. Third, we had to box out and do a good job on the boards, and that's the one thing we didn't do. (Westmar) kept the ball alive, and seemed to come up with the loose balls. And there were a lot of loose balls."


The other problem the Wildcats were unable to overcome was a poor shooting night. Williamsport managed to hit just 2 of 17 second-half field goal tries, scoring just 13 points in the final 16 minutes.

"In the big games, people have to step up," said Murphy. "There were times when we'd have great looks, we just couldn't knock it down. We just didn't expect to have trouble scoring."

In the decisive fourth quarter, Westmar (18-5) committed three turnovers in the first three minutes, but the Wildcats were unable to take advantage. Williamsport finally scored when Duc Trieu sank two free throws with 2:36 remaining.

Meanwhile, Westmar expanded its lead to 34-29.

Andy Artz closed the gap to 34-32 with a 3-pointer at the 1:19 mark, but turnovers on two successive possessions and four straight Westmar free throws sealed the outcome.

Facing a more physical team also created problems for the Wildcats (22-2).

"It doesn't take a rocket scientist to look at Trieu, (Steve) Ritchie and (Rusty) Tritsch and see that we don't have a very physical team," explained Murphy. "Our kids just weren't as strong, and they got knocked around. That was the most physical game we've played in all year."

In the first half, Williamsport was able to get the ball inside, but found its shots repeatedly rejected by Westmar center, Alex Kinnie, who registered seven blocked shots in the half.

Artz finished the game with 16 points.

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