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Hubs prove they rule Antietam

January 28, 2006|By KEVIN SPRADLIN

Thanks to the American Civil Liberties Union, the separation between church and state is often an issue without boundaries.

Thanks to Dee Mency, the lines between the top teams in the MVAL Antietam are more clearly defined.

The North Hagerstown junior guard scored 14 points in a 2-minute, 50-second span in the second quarter and finished with 28, and the No. 7 Hubs led by as many as 35 points in a convincing 75-49 win over visiting Smithsburg on Friday.

After the first quarter, the Hubs dominated, scoring 28 points in the second period for a 39-20 halftime lead. They added 22 more points in the third.

"That's not what I expected," said Leopards coach Eric Gerber. "They took it to us. The game was clearly over by halftime. We just imploded in the second quarter. They beat us in every aspect of the game."

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The Hubs trailed 12-11 two minutes into the second period before Mency began his streak of impressive weaves between Smithsburg defenders. Whether penetrating inside, shooting from mid-range or just inside 3-point range, the area's leading scorer couldn't be stopped.

"I was able to get easy buckets," Mency said. "I was able to shoot anywhere from the 3-point line to inside."

Mency's layup gave North a 13-12 lead with 5:42 left in the second quarter. The Hubs never trailed again.

After a 3-pointer by Fred Kreiger, Mency went inside again for a 19-14 advantage. Mency hit three of the next four field goals for the Hubs (10-3, 7-0) to help build a 28-14 lead with 2:52 left in the half.

The start of Mency's scoring blitz coincided with the full-court press the Hubs applied. Under pressure, the Leopards folded. While Smithsburg had hoped to use the 3-point shot to stay close, the Leopards made just 2 of 7 from 3-point range in the second period and missed 13 3-point attempts in the game.

"That's something we certainly expected," Gerber said of North's intensity. "Our transition defense was pathetic."

Coming into the game, Smithsburg (8-5, 6-2) was only one game behind North in the conference standings. On paper, it was a matchup between contenders.

With the loss, the Leopards drop to third place. North holds a one-game lead over Williamsport (8-5, 6-1), which beat Catoctin, 51-31.

It didn't help that the Leopards' leading scorer, Andrew Bentley, was held scoreless.

"I don't think that's happened in his varsity career," Gerber said. "I think it's safe to say that. When he doesn't score, we're going to have trouble scoring."

Tyrell Wilson added 12 points for the Hubs. Chris Brown led Smithsburg with 12 points, while Bentley and Andre Hardy had nine rebounds each.

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