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Hawks change their plan, but not winning ways

November 25, 2000

Hawks change their plan, but not winning ways



By BOB PARASILITI / Staff Writer


Usually Hagerstown Community College basketball is about as subtle as smack across the bridge of the nose.

The Hawks make no qualms about their intentions: full-court pressure defense to disrupt opponents to the point where they almost hand the ball to HCC for a layup.

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Monroe (N.Y.) Community College had similar intentions on Saturday at the HCC athletic complex. But the Hawks used some unintentional deception - a change of pace, if you will - to pull out a 79-69 victory over the Tribunes.

It would suffice to say Monroe zoned out over the adjustments in HCC's man pressure.

"They thought we were playing a zone press but we were still in man and had chosen to double the primary (entry pass)," HCC coach Jim Brown said. "I know (Monroe coach) Jerry Burns and he was waiting for us to go to play zone and I was trying to stay away from playing it as long as I could."

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The Hawks picked off a succession of inbounds passes with 13 minutes to play, allowing them to erase a 51-50 deficit with an 18-7 run over the next nine minutes and assume control in the matchup of two evenly matched Region XX teams.

The switch allowed HCC (6-0) to make the defensive plays in the backcourt and prevented Monroe its strong, overpowering moves to the basket for easy scores.

"(Monroe likes) to penetrate and cut into the gaps of the defense to get to the basket," HCC point guard Bayi Handy said. "Our big guys got down and sacrificed in the second half by putting a body on them inside. We aren't big, but we play hard."

HCC made the first decisive move with a 8-0 flurry to start the run. Corey Tabron scored four of his 12 points to start the rally while the Hawks' defense started into its zone-like look. A pair of Handy steals in the backcourt turned into easy baskets.

After Monroe got back to within two points, including a 3-pointer by 6-foot-7 Gabriel Inglis who scored 21 points. Then HCC started the second phase of the run, finished by four straight points by Brandon DeShields, who led HCC with 19 points.

"We were really pleased with the way the kids picked up their play," Brown said. "We didn't make any mistakes during that period of time. Usually, this early in the season, you are going to see mistakes and we just didn't have any."

The two teams battled through the first half with neither leading by more than seven points. HCC was content working the perimeter while Monroe excelled at taking it strong to the basket, led by Inglis and his three dunks. The Tribunes led 36-35 at the half.

HCC fell behind 48-40 to open the second half before getting back-to-back 3-pointers from Tabron and Eric Branham followed by a Dominic Crutchfield tip-in to tie the game and set the stage for defensive switch.

Tabron finished with 12 points while Crutchfield had 10 points with nine rebounds. Derek Hoffman and Ian Brenner had seven rebounds each in HCC's final tuneup before traveling to face Southern Idaho, the No. 1 ranked junior college team in the country next week.

"This one wasn't easy ... we were glad it wasn't," Brown said.

HCC 79, Monroe 69


MONROE (69)

Nowden 0 0-0 0, Jones 0 0-0 0, Andrews 6 2-6 14, Garrett 3 1-3 7, Kinney 5 4-9 15, Wilson 0 0-1 0, Middleton 3 0-2 6, Black 2 1-1 6, Inglis 7 5-5 21. Totals 26 13-27 69.

HAGERSTOWN (79)

Tabron 3 4-4 13, Crutchfield 5 0-0 10, Branham 5 0-0 11, Handy 1 6-6 8, DeShields 7 3-3 19, Gause 1 0-0 3, Jennings 1 4-6 6, McKnight 0 0-0 0, Gaddy 0 0-0 0, Brenner 4 0-0 8, Hoffman 0 2-2 2. Totals 27 19-22 79.

Halftime - Monroe 36, HCC 35. Three-point goals - Monroe 4 (Inglis 2, Black, Kinney), HCC 6 (Tabron 2, DeShields 2, Branham, Gause).

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