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Hawks finish regular season with win

February 17, 2005|by BOB PARASILITI

bobp@herald-mail.com

There were some positive things Kenny Keyes could say about Hagerstown Community College's game on Wednesday.

The only problem, none were about the game itself.

The Hawks took total control over Northern Virginia Community College with a 27-7 run starting four minutes into the game and ran away with a 110-89 victory in the regular-season finale at the HCC athletic complex.

"Hey, it gives us 18 wins," said Keyes, HCC's coach. "That's one more than we had last season."

That was the closest thing Keyes had to blinders and selective memory after watching a game which resembled a tennis movie played at fast forward.

It wasn't pretty or all that helpful. But it was what it was.

"We were hoping for it to be a little more competitive so we can work on some things but it didn't happen," Keyes said.

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The game was HCC's last dress rehearsal before it kicks off tournament season. The Hawks (18-8) start with the Maryland JuCo Conference Tournament play-in game at home Tuesday at 4 p.m., followed by the possibility of three games over the Feb. 25-27 weekend at HCC for the JuCo title.

A week later, HCC will be in Frederick on March 6 playing in the Region XX final.

Instead of a tuneup, Wednesday's game was more of a get well run (and gun) in the park. The win helped plug two major holes in the Hawks' ship after losing to Allegany and Frederick in the last five days.

"Those two games we lost were what I wanted to play well in heading into the playoffs," Keyes said. "I was hoping to win at least one of them."

The two teams played at a pace that would have lapped hummingbirds and made auctioneers stutter.

NoVa trailed 10-9 after Clay Brown hit the third of the Raiders' three 3s to open the game at the 16:29 mark. David Miner ignited HCC's decisive burst with a rebound and putback with 16:05 remaining before halftime.

Then, for the next 12 minutes, 50 seconds, HCC ran its lead to 49-22 with a 39-13 run behind 17 points by Miner and another nine by Derek Fields.

"Our defense made our offense there," Keyes said. "We were just making shots - hitting 3s and making steals and finishing. When we do that and get out and finish, we are tough to beat."

They were the defining moments of another good point for the Hawks as Miner finished with 21 points, 19 rebounds and 10 assists to post a triple-double.

Game plans went out the window in the second half, especially with HCC holding a 60-39 lead.

NOVA tried to fight back with pressure and 3-point shooting, mounting a 21-5 run late in the game to close to within 104-87 with 1:14 remaining. The Raiders came back against HCC's bench, turning turnovers into easy scores.

Dereje Fekadu kept NoVa in the game by hitting eight of the Raiders' 12 3-pointers en route to 26 points while Kenny Wilson cleaned up on the turnovers to score 17.

Fields paced HCC with 23 points while Momodou Jobe, Bernard Harris and Marko Hamlin finished with 14 each.

"We are hoping to win on Tuesday now and get ready for the Maryland JuCo," Keyes said.

Another good point, Wednesday's game not withstanding.

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