Rebels rock, roll Railroaders

February 12, 2004|by BOB PARASILITI

The No. 2 South Hagerstown boys basketball team turned coach Bob Starkey into a man of few words on Wednesday.

In fact, it was so quiet in the Rebels' huddle, you started to look for the volume control buttons.

"In the first three timeouts Brunswick called, I didn't say anything," Starkey said. "I just said, 'You are playing good defense.'"

That was more than enough coaching on this night. South Hagerstown befuddled Brunswick with its pressure half-court defense to force turnover after turnover as the Rebels easily derailed the visitors in an 86-39 MVAL Antietam victory.

After falling behind 3-0, South scored 17 consecutive points and 30 of the next 33 to lead 30-6 with 6:27 remaining in the first half.


It wasn't that the longtime coach was at a loss. The Rebels were so effective, Starkey was able to save his voice for his postgame comments.

"No sweat," Starkey said, while mopping his dry brow. "We had a tremendous half. We put a lot of pressure on them. We were awful good for 1 3/4 quarters ... awful good."

Almost lost in the stirring defensive performances was guard David Miner's march to the South Hagerstown all-time boys basketball scoring record. The senior scored 13 of the Rebels' 21 first-quarter points before hitting two foul shots at the 7:20 mark of the second quarter to eclipse the mark of 1,486 points set by Scott Kidd in 1988.

Miner scored 22 of South's first 30 points - aided largely on steals by the defense leading to layups - en route to his game-high 44. He has 1,516 career points and trails Smithsburg's Colby Bachtell by 266 points for Washington County's all-time public school scoring title.

Miner was able to play all his defense above the foul circle as he either slapped Brunswick passes away to get breakaways, slipped away to convert steals by teammates or released down the court to catch long outlet passes from his taller teammates for easy scores. Thirty of Miner's points came off layups.

"He scored a lot, but we assisted them," Brunswick coach Jim Sklencar said. "They are so quick and they're all transition. They work real hard on defense. We didn't take care of the ball very well. We had a lot of turnovers."

The turnovers only primed the pump for the Rebels (15-2, 9-0). Miner continued to get out in front of the pack for easy scores to finish the half with 31 points.

"I think it's smart what South does," Sklencar said. "They can rely on their size and take some risks out front with their defense. It allows Miner to get down the floor. It's good coaching. Every one of us would love to get easy baskets that we don't work hard for."

South got more than its share, but lost some of its edge early in the second half. Miner opened the half with a tip-in before the Railroaders tried to climb back into the game with a 10-2 run, cutting the deficit to 52-27. Jason Alexander, who is just returning from injury to the Railroaders lineup, scored five of his team-high 17 in the stretch.

It was as close as Brunswick got as South outscored the Railroaders 34-12 the rest of the way. Miner left the game with 30 seconds left in the third quarter.

Guyon McNab came off the bench to score 13 for the Rebels, while Cody Hickerson finished with 11 for Brunswick.

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