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Bartlett pops off in HCC win

November 29, 2005|by BOB PARASILITI

bobp@herald-mail.com

No matter how you look at it, Christi Bartlett is the colonel - or kernel - of the inside game for the Hagerstown Community College women's basketball team.

"They bounce off of her like popcorn off the floor," HCC coach Marlys Palmer said.

Bartlett buttered up HCC's offense with 24 points and 14 rebounds - all in the paint - Monday to help the Hawks salt away a 69-60 victory over regional rival Potomac State, getting all but a concession speech from the Catamounts along the way.

Bartlett keyed a Hawks' inside game which scored 26 of its 28 baskets in the paint, including eight on fast breaks. The transfer from Barton College accounted for 19 points in the first half on a variety of inside moves to help HCC to a 36-31 halftime lead.

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"I like it inside," Bartlett said. "It's fun. I like getting in there and getting contact. We were trying to work inside and go out."

Faster than HCC could say Orville Redenbacher, the Hawks worked the inside to their advantage. They built leads of seven and 10 points in the first half, but couldn't get the big run to put the Catamounts away.

Still, controlling Potomac was a huge victory for HCC.

"We haven't beaten them since 2001 and they had been beating us by an average by 20 points over the last six games," Palmer said. "They are the defending region champions and went to the national tournament last year. I asked this team to play with the eye of the tiger and the heart of a lion and they responded."

HCC pounded the ball inside from the start while Potomac State seemed more content to find the outside shot. It worked at times for the Catamounts, allowing them to draw within a basket on a few occasions, but Potomac never led after 2-0.

"(Inside) was where we had an advantage," Palmer said. "We were trying to take advantage of what they gave us. (Bartlett) is a hard matchup for most teams. She is strong and she has a lot of inside moves while being so quick. She's tough to handle inside."

Bartlett scored five points to open the second half as HCC moved to a 45-32 lead, the biggest of the game.

Potomac State battled to get within 54-42 with 7 minutes remaining before Bartlett worked to the middle in a jiffy, popping in a rebound while being fouled. She capped the three-point play with the foul shot to give HCC a 57-52 lead it never relinquished.

"We were excited out there the whole game," Bartlett said. "It's exciting to get in there an make a big basket. It's always good to make a big play like that, but we had so many of them today with some good breakaways and stuff."

HCC moved back to an 11-point lead before Potomac State tried to make a final rush. Bartlett hit a pair of foul shots to cap the nine-point win.

Samantha Cain had 14 points for HCC, including two 3-pointers - the only outside shots the Hawks hit - to go with four steals and four assists. Lindsey Plotner came off the bench to collect 10 rebounds, while Jamie Robinson had seven points with six assists and seven rebounds.

HCC outrebounded Potomac State, 52-28. Jennifer Thomas had 21 points and Kasey Kahl added 19, while Martinsburg graduate Meredith Bullett scored four.

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