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Hawks construct a victory

December 18, 2008|By BOB PARASILITI

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All the Hagerstown Community College women's basketball team needed was some hard hats.

After all, the Hawks spent an evening going from implosion to rebuilding to demolition in one 40-minute game.

HCC fell way behind and used speed and defense to come back before pulling away for what looked like a matter-of-fact 70-59 Maryland JuCo Conference victory over Anne Arundel on Wednesday at the HCC athletic complex.

"As a team, I thought we did a good job digging out of a hole," said HCC coach Marlys Palmer.

Funny thing about digging holes. You have to find something other than dirt to fill them with. The Hawks (7-7, 4-1) climbed out by pushing the Pioneers into the cavern.

Anne Arundel came out shooting, hitting virtually every shot it put up, while the Hawks had problems drawing iron on their attempts. The Pioneers' won the battle of zone defenses with patience by moving to a 17-2 lead in the first 3 minutes, 40 seconds of the game.

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Courtney King hit two of her four 3s and Molly McCarthy added five points in a 15-0 run that shoved HCC to the side.

Palmer replaced HCC's entire starting lineup with a speed team made up of Ricia Brown, Veronica Wheeler, Valentina Wheeler, Shawayna Morel and Amy Rhoderick to give the Hawks a new foundation.

"We relied on our quickness ... that's basically how we did it," said Veronica Wheeler, who led HCC's move to the aggressive mode. "We went out and changed the game to our way of playing and tried to get them out of their way. They were out there like a bomb squad."

The Hawks pulled out the fuse.

HCC's defense forced Anne Arundel to shoot many shots on the run in the last 10 minutes of the first half. The Hawks went to a man set in the second half and forced the Pioneers to start their offense 25 feet away from the basket, which took away set shots and opened the rebounding.

The Hawks outscored Anne Arundel 29-20 in the last 16 minutes in the first half to trail only 37-31 at the intermission. They outscored tiring Anne Arundel by 15 in the second half to blow up the Pioneers' upset bid.

HCC used an 11-0 run over a six-minute stretch to go from two down to a 56-49 lead with 6:44 remaining. Alex Baker scored on a 12-footer to tie the game at 49-49 before Rhoderick scored three straight points to put the Hawks ahead to stay.

Valentina Wheeler led HCC with 14 points, while Thompson had 11 points and six assists. Morel finished with seven points but added 12 rebounds and six steals. HCC outrebounded Anne Arundel, 51-23.

King finished with 16 points and McCarthy had 13 for Anne Arundel (2-9).

"Most teams feed off their offense. We have been trying to feed of our defense," Palmer said. "I was pretty proud of them. We have to rely on our team speed. I'm also proud that we finally got back to .500. ... I never thought I would be happy to see that."

HCC 70, Anne Arundel 59
ANNE ARUNDEL (2-9)

McCarthy 5 1-4 23, Beall 3 0-0 6, Rohleder 2 0-0 6, King 6 0-0 16, Webber 5 2-4 12, Druger 2 0-0 4, Kristin 1 0-0 2 Totals 24 3-5 59.
HAGERSTOWN COM. COLLEGE (7-7, 4-1)
Brown 1 0-0 2, Payne 2 0-0 5, Ve. Wheeler 4 0-0 8, Pierce 0 0-0 0, Wa. Whiller 4 4-6 14, Morel 3 1-2 7, Thomposn 3 4-4 11, Baker 3 0-0 8, Rhoderick 2 2-4 6, Williams 3 3-6 9. Totals 25 14-20 70
Halftime -- Anne Arundel, 37-31. Three-point baskets -- Anne Arundel 8 (King 4, McCarthy 2, Rohleder 2), HCC 6 (Va. Wheeler 2, Baker 2, Payne, Thompson). Fouled out -- Kruger.

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