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Warriors hold on to beat Panthers

December 21, 2004|by BILL STERNER/Staff Correspondent

HANCOCK - In the season of giving, the Hancock girls basketball team just was not in the taking mood.

Boonsboro (4-1) gift-wrapped a close game for the Panthers. But Hancock missed opportunities at the free throw line and point-blank shots in the paint, enabling the Warriors to hang on for an exciting 47-42 win Monday night.

In a game that saw nearly 40 personal fouls committed by both teams and a pair of player ejections, both teams actually settled into playing an entertaining game, which matched the speed and finesse of the Warriors' perimeter offense with the muscle and hustle of Hancock's front court.

In the end, the Warriors held on as Alex Baker and Caitlin Selby sank four free throws in a row with just less than 40 seconds left to pack it up and put it under the tree for Boonsboro coach Bernie Semler.

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"Both teams played really well," Semler said. "Hancock is a scrappy bunch, hustling after every loose ball and really fighting for possession. I would have to say that overall, they beat us to the ball several times tonight."

But Hancock (2-4) couldn't convert with consistency as the Panthers trailed 29-24 at halftime after bricking a half-dozen wide open looks in the lane and shooting a frigid 7-for-18 from the free throw line.

Hancock's Jennifer Willison had another double-double, scoring 13 points and controlling the boards with 18 rebounds. Amber Moats added 12 rebounds and eight points for the Panthers.

"Amber played very well and really helped establish us underneath," Hancock coach Rocky Wills said. "With both her and Willison, we never let Boonsboro get too comfortable."

The Warriors threatened to break the game open three different times, building double-digit leads before Hancock fought back into the game each time. Throughout the fourth quarter, Hancock never trailed by more than five.

"They did a great job of getting the ball into Willison," Semler said. "We had to adjust several times, but our defense came through."

Jesse Ambrose scored 13 points and Jerica Hewett had 11 for Boonsboro.

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