Warriors ride DeBarge to sail past Leopards

January 24, 2007|by DAN KAUFFMAN

SMITHSBURG - Mike DeBarge had 16 points, eight rebounds, four assists and four steals, leading Boonsboro's boys basketball team to a 46-31 victory over rival Smithsburg on Tuesday in the MVAL Antietam.

"Mike was the difference on the floor tonight," Warriors coach Sam Connelly said. "He played real well on both ends and played a great all-around game."

After leading by just four, 22-18, at halftime, Boonsboro (7-6, 4-2) blew open the game with a 16-0 run after Terry Sword made two free throws for Smithsburg (3-11, 2-5) a minute into the third quarter. They were the last points the Leopards scored in the period.

"We obviously did a very bad job attacking their zone, and I certainly take a lot of the blame for that," Smithsburg coach Eric Gerber said. "We didn't make the adjustments we needed to make. ... That drought in the third quarter, we've been giving up runs lately that have really hurt us."


DeBarge started the run with two layups, one off a steal and the other by curling around a screen. Adam Flook and Matt Wetzel followed with 3-pointers to force a Leopards timeout. Two free throws by DeBarge and an offensive rebound and putback by Chris Selby gave Boonsboro a 36-20 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Flook opened the final frame with a layup to finish the run. He scored nine of his 11 points in the second half after a lackluster first half in which he was benched following a bad shot from 25 feet in the first quarter, then sat for most of the second quarter with two fouls.

"Adam bounced back real nice in the second half," Connelly said.

Jimmy Burgess and Steve Whitt shared team-high scoring honors for Smithsburg with eight points each. The Leopards went cold in the second half, going 4-for-18 from the floor - including 0-for-8 in the third quarter - to finish 13-for-41 for the game (31.7 percent). They also committed 21 turnovers.

"Defensively, we weren't bad," Gerber said. "Our goal was to limit Flook, and we did that. We just had some breakdowns in the third quarter, which is what happens with kids who are struggling at the other end. Our problem, needless to say, is on the offensive side."

Boonsboro committed 18 turnovers, but the Warriors shot 16-for-41 from the floor (39 percent) and 11-for-12 from the foul line.

"That's what wins tight games, is at the line," Connelly said. "This is our fourth straight game over 70 percent from the line, and that's just focus."

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