Williamsport reels in Hubs

January 30, 2008|By TIM KOELBLE

Williamsport and North Hagerstown played role reversal in the first quarter of Monday's boys basketball game.

North Hagerstown, winner of just four games this season, staggered Williamsport, which has only two losses, by taking a 17-3 lead in the first eight minutes before the No. 4 Wildcats righted the ship.

Williamsport roared back in the second period and punctuated the game with a strong second half on the way to a 59-43 victory at North.

"I was shocked with the first quarter," said North coach Kevin Hartman, who worked the sidelines under the weather.

The Hubs (4-11) hit Williamsport with some inside work on offense and a zone defense that kept the Wildcats shooting from the outside in the first quarter. Williamsport went 1 of 14 from the floor in the first -- the lone goal coming on a lay-in by Greg Minnick off an inbounds play.


Eric Wilfong opened the second with two 3-pointers that began the Williamsport comeback, with the Wildcats taking a 19-18 lead on a basket by A.J. Jamison.

At the half, both teams were shooting 25 percent from the floor and Williamsport's big-man duo of Sean Dixon and Minnick had combined for just two points.

"We've had slow-start tendencies and I know that (Kevin's) team is going to come out and scrap," said Williamsport coach Scott Mowbray. "I didn't say a lot at halftime. We've got senior leadership with pride."

In the second half, Dixon hit a 3-pointer from the right wing for a 25-23 lead. After North responded with buckets by Tyler Spencer and Joe Mattei for a 27-25 lead, the Wildcats began to bring it home. Minnick hit three straight buckets and Williamsport (11-2) closed out the third with a 9-1 run for a 44-34 lead.

"(Williamsport) started hitting those shots and we just started standing around not being active," said Hartman. "Our zone worked the first 18 minutes."

Before North knew it, Williamsport orchestrated an 11-1 run to open the fourth, with seven Wildcats getting in the act.

Williamsport's about-face came in the form of 12-for-21 shooting from the field and a 12-for-16 clip at the line after going 4-for-11 in the opening half.

"It's amazing when you make shots that it leads to offensive and defensive intensity," said Mowbray. "We played good the final three quarters."

Minnick finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds and Wilfong added 11 points. Dixon had nine second-half points and seven rebounds.

Mattei and Brent Bell each scored 13 points and Bell had seven rebounds for the Hubs.

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