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South girls overwhelmed by Century

December 06, 2006|by CHRIS CARTER / Staff Correspondent

The South Hagerstown girls basketball team had a clear case of first-game jitters when it hosted Century on Tuesday night.

The Rebels struggled to hold onto the ball, stumbling through 34 turnovers, and had just as little luck shooting the ball as they suffered a season-opening 61-11 loss to the Knights.

South needed a pair of free throws by senior forward Brittany Shadrach to reach double digits midway through the fourth quarter.

"First-game jitters probably played a part in how we played, especially in the first half," said South coach Ray Singletary. "We have a lot of younger players in the sense that they haven't played a lot of basketball. They tried to do some things spectacular to make something happen."

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South turned the ball over 12 times in the first quater. The Rebels struggled to break Century's press early in the game, often heaving the ball over everyone and out of bounds. It resulted in two nine-point runs by the Knights (1-0), capped by a 6-0 spurt to end the quarter with a 24-4 lead.

"We played well in the first quarter, the way we want to play," said Century coach Joel Beard. "We're not real big so we have to put pressure on the ball and run with it. When you don't have a lot of size on a team, you have to mold it to your strengths."

Century began to empty its bench in the first quarter and its four reserves were in and out of the game and played the majority of the second half.

Still, South continued to struggle. The Rebels did manage to cut their turnover mark from 21 in the first half to 13 in the second half to create more shot opportunities, but they had trouble getting their shots to fall.

"I was a little more pleased in the second half in that we didn't turn the ball over as much," Singletary said. "But we're not a very offensive team and we need to play defense and get steals in order to create points."

South managed back-to-back baskets just once in the game - the last score before halftime and the first score of the third quarter.

Meanwhile, Century scored all its points in bunches, beginning with the two 9-0 runs in the first quarter. The Knights went on to post runs of 12, 9, 14 and 8 unanswered points, accounting for all 61 points.

Stef McCallen led the Knights with 15 points, while Julie Niblock had 11 and reserve Stephanie Butschky added 10.

Brianna Hammond led the Rebels with six points.

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