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North Hagerstown boys survive Catoctin's late rush

December 14, 1999|By CURT HORNBECKER / Staff Correspondent

Normally, hitting six 3-pointers during a four-minute span of the fourth quarter would be good enough to win a game. That's why North Hagerstown boys basketball coach Tim McNamee is glad his club was able to do what he wanted.

McNamee couldn't have been happier about the 32-point advantage the Hubs enjoyed late in the third period Tuesday night, because it allowed his squad to escape Catoctin's shooting barrage with a 93-75 Monocacy Valley Athletic League win.

"I thought it was important to jump on them early," said McNamee. "You're not always able to do that. The way they shoot the ball, though, if you let them hang around, they're dangerous."

But the Cougars (0-3) weren't able to hang around nearly long enough, as North (3-1) - sparked by 12 points from Jason Ott - scored the game's first 10 points, and forced 11 first-period turnovers to establish a 29-13 margin after the first eight minutes.

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An 8-0 North run to open the second quarter gave the Hubs a 24-point advantage with 5:32 left, and they settled for a 47-27 halftime lead.

"Their press got us into an up-tempo game," said Cougars coach Chris Barnhart. "We didn't do a very good job taking care of the basketball. We didn't make smart decisions. We don't want to get into a run-and-gun game against North."

The Hubs continued to pour it on in the third period, outscoring Catoctin 10-2 to open the quarter, and claiming a 32-point bulge at the 2:29 mark. Catoctin still wasn't ready to throw in the towel. Five points apiece from Steve Smith and Jeremy Parks accounted for a 10-2 streak allowing the Cougars to close the period down by a 68-44 score.

The Hubs pushed the lead back to 22 before Evan Miller starting hitting from the perimeter for Catoctin. The junior drained four straight 3s within three minutes, with Parks and Josh Eyler adding one apiece. But thanks to eight points from Tater Russ, and four each from Ott and Chris Everett, the Hubs were able to keep the Cougars from getting any closer than 85-70.

"We have to get some pride on defense," said Barnhart. "You can't give up 93 points and expect to win. And when you score 75 points, that should be enough to win in this league. We have to make defense a priority."

Meanwhile, as though the pressure defense wasn't enough, the Hubs' passing game was outstanding, with Russ tying a school record with 16 assists, and Rice finishing with a triple-double, with 12 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds.

After Catoctin's 11-for-24 performance, the Hubs have now allowed 27 three-point goals in the last two games, including 16 by Francis Scott Key Monday night.

"(The opposition) got 16 3-pointers against you one night, and 11 the next. What are we doing wrong," asked McNamee rhetorically. "It tells me their shooting the ball pretty well against us. I guess I'll have to look at some tape."

North Hagerstown 93, Catoctin 75




CATOCTIN (75)

Eyler 9, Parks 22, Miller 17, Boyer 5, Topper 2, Ott 6, Smith 14, Totals 25 12-16 75.

NORTH HAGERSTOWN (93)

Rice 12, Naylor 12, Bell 2, Berry 3, Russ 22, Medley 8, Ott 18, Everett 16, Totals 41 5-13 93.

Catoctin13141731-75

North29182125-93

Three-point goals: Catoctin 11 (Eyler, Parks 6, Miller 4). North 4 (Rice, Berry, Russ 2).

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