Cadets beat Hubs to the quick

December 09, 2006|by BOB PARASILITI

North Hagerstown boys basketball coach Tim McNamee's mouth was moving, but even he couldn't believe what was coming out of it.

"(Frederick) was quicker and more athletic than we were," McNamee said. "I looked at my assistants and said 'That's the first time I ever said that about a team other than us.'"

Speed and athleticism has been North's trademark over the years. The qualities were traitors on Friday.

Frederick had a little more speed, a little more athleticism and a lot more experience as the Cadets had everything fall into place Friday for a 75-61 win over the Hubs.

"They were more athletic and quicker off their feet," McNamee said. "The kids held their own and played hard, but (Frederick) made a run to start the second half."


The Cadets (2-0) were showing some loco motion. They were moving around the floor in some constant motion and did it with little notion in their new offense.

Frederick's guard tandem of Chris Thompson and Steve Custis controlled the entire show, scoring 52 of the Cadets' 75 points. They did it by moving the ball and looking for each other in their free-form style of offense. Thompson finished with 27 while Custis, Frederick County's reigning player of the year, added 25.

"We are still working to learn the timing and spacing of the offense," said Frederick coach Arnie McGaha. "But the guards, across the board, made better decisions. Tonight was Steve's birthday and he wanted to celebrate a little and Chris probably played the finest floor game I've seen."

Frederick jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead and protected it the rest of the game. The Cadets slowly pulled away by spreading the floor and beating the Hubs (1-1) to the glass for missed shots.

Frederick led 18-13 at the end of the first quarter and 36-25 at the half, outscoring North 4-0 in the final minute to push to the 11-point lead.

"Their offense didn't hurt us," McNamee said. "If we could have kept it close, we would have stayed in the zone. We had some matchup problems with them. They hurt us on the boards. They beat us to the ball off the glass."

Frederick set the tone for the rest of the game to start the second half as Custis made a steal on North's inbound pass, leading to a Thompson layup. It ignited a 12-5 run in the first three minutes of the second half to build a 48-30 advantage.

"We played a lesser experienced team and exploited some things," McGaha said. "We're getting better every night."

North tried to climb back into the game as Diez Johnson scored six points in the final five minutes of the third quarter to help the Hubs get within 56-43 by the end of the third quarter.

Frederick got another quick start to start the final period, outscoring the Hubs 13-7 in the first four minutes to build its largest lead, 69-50.

North fought back, but ran out of time as both teams cleared the benches down the stretch.

"(Frederick) made some tough, athletic shots," McNamee said. "We shot 67 percent in the second half, and didn't even make a dent on them."

Tyrone Wheeler led North with 20 points while Johnson added 12 and Freddie Matthews had 11.

"We'll go back to work now," McNamee said. "I like this team. They play well together, but we are still in the basic stages of developing. We just have to take it one game at a time."

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