Patriots find gem in freshman Wilson

January 23, 2004|by DAN KAUFFMAN

There's nothing about Kem Wilson's play that indicates Thomas Johnson's leading scorer and rebounder is a freshman.

Of course, that's what makes Wilson special.

"If you watch her play, she is very young but she knows the game," Patriots coach Amy Schmuck said. "She has so much potential."

And in the first 11 games of her high school career, Wilson has shown plenty. From her spot on the baseline, Wilson has averaged 16.2 points and 8.7 rebounds per game.

"She's very quick, has a great jump shot, can rebound, she's a very good all-around player," Schmuck said. "She's tough underneath, and she can jump for sure."


Schmuck saw her first glimpses of Wilson's talent last year, where "she was definitely thr leading scorer on our summer team." Already, she's come to the forefront as a leader of a Patriots squad whose future is bright.

"I think she has taken over leadership responsibilities," Schmuck said. "When we needs points or free throws, I can always count on her to put it in the hoop. She'll do whatever it takes and whatever I ask her to.

"I would honestly have to say Kem will be one of the top players in the state. She has so much talent, everybody who's seen her play can't believe her talent for how young she is."

Wilson isn't the only freshman turning eyes in the MVAL. North Hagerstown's Cara Thompson is also earning rave reviews.

Thompson is averaging 12.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game and had been in double figures in five straight games until the Hubs lost to Antietam-leading Catoctin on Tuesday. One Antietam coach called Thompson "the best player in the league."

Thompson and junior center Chelsea Clark (16.2 points, 11.5 rebounds) have the Hubs at .500 (2-2) in conference play.

Injuries derailing Brunswick

It's been a bad year for injuries in Frederick County. Middletown's John Keimig and St. John's-Prospect Hall's Jared Lyons are currently out with wrist and hand injuries, and now Brunswick's boys are feeling the pain.

First, outside shooting threat Craig Wachter broke his wrist in a game against Williamsport two weeks ago.

The first set of X-rays taken after the game were negative and Wachter, who averages 12.7 points per game, actually scored 10 points in two quarters of play one week ago against North Hagerstown.

But when the wrist was still bothering him last Monday, Wachter had more X-rays, which showed the break. Wachter will be out at least three weeks.

Making the situation worse, leading scorer and rebounder Jason Anderson went down in Thursday's loss to Boonsboro with a severe high ankle sprain. It is unknown how long Anderson will be out, but it's a crippling blow to the Railroaders.

"We're losing our firepower offensively and it's tough," Brunswick coach Jim Sklencar said. "Our kids, the effort is there, we just really have trouble scoring. I've been coaching 30 years ... and I have never seen anything like this in all the years I've coached. All our leading scorers, we lost them all."

Spalding's Gay invades Gael Center

One of the country's best prep players - Archbishop Spalding forward Rudy Gay - will be in town Sunday as Spalding plays St. Maria Goretti at the Gael Center in a Baltimore Catholic League matchup.

Gay, a 6-foot-8 forward who will play at Connecticut next year, has so many ways he can take a game over, which is what he's been doing in leading Spalding to a 15-3 record (5-1 in the BCL).

"He carries their team," Goretti coach Cokey Robertson said. "If we can't stop him, we can't stop Spalding, it's that simple.

"He can hit the 3, post you up and take it to the hole. He brings the whole package. ... He sits right up there with Carmelo Anthony and that type of player."

Goretti (10-8, 1-5) doesn't have anything unique planned for Gay on Sunday.

"They've got some other players who can score, so we're not going to box-and-1 or match up on him," Robertson said. "We've just got to play him straight up and hope to keep him as far from basket as we can."

Robertson is hoping for a loud and spirited crowd on Sunday.

"That'd be nice, to have it like that," he said.

Week's top performers

  • South Hagerstown's David Miner put 42 points on the scoreboard against Williams-port on Tuesday to follow a 35-point outing against Clear Spring last Friday.

  • Walkersville's Brock McCollum scored a season-high 31 points last Friday against Winters Mill.

  • Heritage Academy's Drew Kidd had 32 points, 14 rebounds and seven steals Tuesday against Cumberland Valley Christian.

MVAL Web site

North Hagerstown boys assistant coach Dave Foltz has no trouble keeping himself busy. He's put tons of time and work into media guides the past few seasons (which are invaluable to us) and even more research into updating the school's football and basketball record books.

Somehow, Foltz also finds the time to maintain an MVAL Web site. It's worth a visit (or two or three) for any fan of the league.

The Web site can be accessed at

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