Girls Basketball: Rebels come up big for Small in win over North

January 20, 2012|By DAN KAUFFMAN |
  • South Hagerstown's Dejaih Johnson, left, doesn't let North Hagerstown's airborne Crystal McLeod stop her from getting the ball upcourt on Friday during the Rebels' 59-40 win.
By Colleen McGrath/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — Seven previous times, South Hagerstown senior Alexis Small had played against rival North Hagerstown, and seven times, she and the Rebels endured a loss.

On Friday night, in what will likely be her final crack at the Hubs — unless the rivals meet again in the Maryland Class 3A West playoffs — Small got to enjoy a victory celebration in her home gym.

With the sting of a disappointing 46-38 loss to North on Dec. 12 fresh in their minds, the Rebels turned Friday’s rematch into a rout early, racing to a 23-7 lead after one quarter and cruising to a 59-40 victory.

It’s South’s first victory over North (7-5, 5-2) in almost eight years — since a 50-44 win on Feb. 26, 2004.

“They were stewing after the last (North) game. They were waiting for this one,” South coach Nate Naylor said. “Lexi’s a senior, she’s been on the varsity since her freshman year and had never beaten North, so everyone wanted this one for her.”

The Rebels’ three super sophomores — Tayana Stewart, Chelsey Scott and Katrice Dickson — led the way.

Stewart — who scored just two points because of foul trouble in the first game against the Hubs — had 17 points, eight rebounds, six steals and four assists.

“We just gave it our all for Lex,” Stewart said. “We had more energy tonight. Our defense gets us started.”

Scott had 14 points and eight rebounds, while Dickson added 13 points.

“This was one of the most important (games) for us,” Scott said. “We wanted to shut down their offense. Defense wins games, all the time.”

“Coach told us to keep our heads up,” said Dickson of the postgame speech following the loss to North on Dec. 12. “We played our hardest (tonight), probably harder than we thought we could.”

The three sophomores scored South’s first three baskets for a 7-2 lead. Dejaih Johnson’s 3-pointer made it 12-3, and later Scott made a 3 and Stewart turned a steal into a layup to cap an 8-0 run for a 20-5 advantage. Dickson’s 3 with 54 seconds left in the first quarter capped the scoring in the frame.

The Rebels (9-6, 6-2) used a 12-2 second-quarter run to take a 35-11 lead, and Scott’s basket off a steal right before the halftime buzzer gave South a 38-13 lead at the break.

South made 15 of 31 field goals in the first half, while North made just 5 of 24 and turned the ball over 15 times.

The Hubs played better in the second half — making 11 of 26 field goals while the Rebels slumped, making just 8 of 35 — but by then it was too late to change the final outcome.

“We dug ourselves a hole we couldn’t dig out of,” North coach Cyndi Benjamin said.

Erika Kline had 16 points, nine rebounds, three blocks and three steals to lead the Hubs, while Iman Scott added 12 points, five rebounds, four steals and three blocks. North played without forward Autumn Fisher, who was making a college visit to Saint Mary’s for volleyball.

JV: North, 36-34 (NH: Paige Flemming, Nancy King 15; SH: Jasmine Joihnson 16).

South Hagerstown 5, 9North Hagerstown 40
Scott 12, Williams 7, McLeod 4, Kline 16, Peterson 1. Totals 16 8-15 40.
Stewart 17, Scott 14, Dickson 13, Small 6, Johnson 7, Shaffer 2. Totals 23 8-13 59.
North    7    6    15    12    —    40
South    23    15    15    6    —    59
3-point goals — South 5 (Stewart, Scott 2, Dickson, Johnson). Rebounds — North 34 (Kline 9), South 39 (Stewart, Scott 8). Turnovers — North 29, South 19. Technical foul — South bench.

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