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Urbana's big men stand tall in victory over North Hagerstown

February 15, 2008|By TIM KOELBLE

IJAMSVILLE, Md. -- North Hagerstown made a go of it during the first half of Thursday's boys basketball contest against Urbana, but the Hawks had too much firepower in the second half and walked off with a 77-48 victory over the Hubs.

Urbana (9-9) celebrated Senior Night with a 42-20 advantage in the second half, handing the Hubs (5-14) their worst loss of the season.

After not hitting their first field goal until midway through the first period and trailing 16-9 at the end of the quarter, the Hubs fought back by eliminating some sloppy passing and nearly took the lead in the second.

"We had some shot selections early that weren't in the offense, but we began to move the ball well and attack offensively and played well for the most part in the first half," said North coach Kevin Hartman.

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A 3-pointer by Urbana's Kevin Sowers gave the Hawks a 19-9 lead before North whittled the margin to 21-19 with 4:40 left in the half. The 10-2 run was capped off by Allen Sandberg's 3-point shot.

North had a chance to tie or take the lead following a missed shot by Urbana, but a 3-point effort by Joe Mattei was no good and Urbana rattled off a 9-2 run on the way to a 35-28 halftime lead.

The Hubs staggered out of the locker room to open the second half -- a familiar sight for Hartman -- while Urbana decided to pound the ball inside to utilize its height advantage.

Jason Erickson (6-foot-3) and Lex Utt (6-4) combined for nine points in the paint in the first three minutes of the third period to take a 48-31 lead that increased to 52-33 at the end of the third as North tallied just five points in the quarter.

"You just looked on the floor and could see we were outsized," said Hartman. "For some reason, and I wish I had the answer, we've just been coming out flat in the third period. Tonight was nothing new."

Urbana finished off North with a 25-point fourth period. Andy Stephens hit a pair of 3-pointers on the way to a team-high 19 points.

Brent Bell led North with 15 points and seven rebounds. Mattei added 12 points and Sandberg had 10.

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