HCC shoots self out of title game: No. 1 Frederick routs Hawks

February 20, 2000|By BILL STERNER / Staff Correspondent

HCC shoots self out of title game: No. 1 Frederick routs Hawks

LARGO, Md. - Frederick Community College women's basketball coach Jack Mehl preaches to his Cougars that the play in the first five minutes of each half can be the difference between winning and losing.

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Hagerstown Community College coach Marlys Palmer may not agree, but she certainly can see his point.

Frederick raced to an 11-2 lead and the Hawks never recovered, dropping a 76-45 decision in the Maryland JuCo Conference championship game.

For HCC, the dream of a repeat championship ended as the Cougars first built, then readily defended a double-digit lead for 24 minutes. Frederick's smothering defensive sets - combined with a 19 percent shooting performance from the floor by the Hawks - spelled doom for HCC.


"You have to give credit to Frederick; it wasn't just poor shooting by us." Palmer said. " They played some pretty good defense, too."

The Cougars gave up only two points in the first five minutes of each half to Hagerstown, an opening layup by Shanna Williams.

"I think defense was a key here today," Mehl said. "We played about as well as we could play early in each half."

Both coaches opened the game in conservative fashion in a direct opposite approach of the earlier rounds. Zone defenses and high percentage point-blank shots were the order of the day.

As HCC's cold hand at offense turned frigid, the Cougars kept taking advantage of any opportunity. Down by nine with just over five minutes gone, HCC roared back into contention behind the aggressive play of Williams and Brooke Russ. A Russ layup cut the Cougars' lead to 13-10.

The three points seemed like a distant memory minutes later. A 15-footer by tournament MVP Dani Thomas and a pair of 3s by Meaghan Beall put some padding between the teams.

"We played good defense, but our shots would not drop." Palmer said. "We kept trying and working, but you don't win many championships shooting like we did today."

Frederick 76, HCC 45


Tucker 2, Williams 7, Zeger 2, Ferguson 5, Rector 7, Russ 14, Fischer 8. Totals 15 13-25 45.


Thomas 21, Brooks 6, Beall 11, Liver 4, Luckett 7, Bowes 9, Kapust 5, Turner 6, King 7. Totals 28 16-22 76.

Halftime - Frederick 32, Hagerstown 20. Three point goals - Hagerstown 2 (Fischer 2), Frederick 4 (Beall 3, Thomas). Fouled Out - Williams, Miller (H), Zeger.

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