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Hawks men misfire from outside in loss

January 15, 2004|by CURT HORNBECKER / Staff Correspondent

It was a simple, regular, run-of-the-mill, everyday, no-frills 3-2 zone, but it was more than the Hagerstown Community College men's basketball team could solve.

Miserable shooting from the outside and an unwillingness to try to get the ball in the paint Wednesday night doomed the Hawks in a 92-72 loss to Chesapeake Community College.

"It's just a regular zone," Skipjacks coach John Mappas said. "We don't go for any of that matchup stuff. It's just a normal zone defense."

But it was a zone for which HCC had no answer. Resigned to shooting from the outside, the Hawks suffered through an eight-minute span in the first half during which Chesapeake turned a 14-6 deficit into a 25-16 advantage.

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After hitting seven of its first nine shots from the floor - all layups against a man-to-man defense - Hagerstown went cold, draining just six of 26 shots in the final 15 minutes of the half against the 3-2 zone.

"We've been trying to get them to pass the ball inside all year," Hawks coach Kenny Keyes said. "We're just not doing it, and our big men are getting frustrated. We don't have anybody who will pass the ball inside. We have a lot of work to do."

For the Skipjacks (12-4), Ellis Yeadon and Chijioke Anyanwu did most of the damage in the first half, combining for 22 points. Chesapeake led 40-29 at the break.

Matters only got worse for the Hawks in the second half. Another eight-minute stretch early in the half - during which HCC (12-4) was outscored 18-2 - all but put the game out of reach.

Despite taking 37 shots from beyond the arc, Hagerstown didn't make one until Terrell Kittleberger knocked one down with 7:42 left in the game. The Hawks made eight 3-pointers (21.6 percent).

"We've shot 35 percent of our threes all year," Keyes said. "I don't know what happened tonight. We just weren't knocking them down."

Thomas Johnson led the way with 18 points for the Hawks. Kittleberger added 14 points.

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