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Girls Basketball: Leopards alter lineup, but still handle Blazers

February 02, 2012|By BRETT NIEVES | Staff Correspondent
  • Smithsburg's Danielle Harbaugh, left, knocks the ball out of the hands of Clear Spring's Becca Dunning Thursday during the first quarter of the Leopards' 54-30 victory.
By Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

Smithsburg girls basketball coach Katy Barnhart decided to go with a different starting lineup in Thursday’s MVAL Antietam matchup against Clear Spring.

The new lineup still provided a well-known result as the Leopards defeated the Blazers, 54-30.

“We wanted some contribution out of everyone tonight,” Barnhart said. “And everyone contributed.”

Clear Spring immediately took advantage of the new-look Leopards, taking an early lead while holding the Leopards scoreless for the first four minutes. The Blazers led 11-9 at the end of the first quarter.

Smithsburg (8-6, 7-4) eventually integrated its usual starters into the contest as the Leopards took control of the game. The Leopards’ defense became more aggressive, which provided a spark for the offense.

“The defense really helped out,” Barnhart said. “They forced turnovers, got rebounds and we were able to get some good looks in transition.”

Danielle Harbaugh was one of just two regular starters for Smithsburg who trotted out to midcourt for pre-game introductions. She made the most of her minutes, leading the Leopards with 14 points — including 10 in the second half — and 15 boards.

Clear Spring (2-14, 0-12) might want to take a page out of Smithsburg’s book and shuffle the lineup to generate some more output. The Blazers only had three different players score points.

“You’re not going to win many games with three people scoring,” Clear Spring coach Adam Hoopengardner said.

The Blazers kept it fairly close in the first half, trailing just 22-18 at halftime. They came out seemingly ready to play the second half, going on a 6-2 run to tie the game at 24. Smithsburg took a quick timeout that seemed to suck the life out of Clear Spring.

“We can’t get used to playing just 19 minutes of a game,” Hoopengardner said. “We fell flat on our face for the other 13 minutes. We have to play a full game.”

Smithsburg answered Clear Spring’s run with a 10-3 run of its own, then, after a Clear Spring timeout, scored 13 unanswered points to end the third quarter up 47-27.

“We turned our defensive intensity up,” Barnhart said. “That allowed us to make our defense our offense.”

Elyse Koterwas and Elisa Owens both came off the Smithsburg bench to score 13 points each.

Alexa Mills led the Blazers with 11 points, Amber Forrest had 10 points and Jess Barnhart rounded out the Clear Spring scorers with nine points.

Smithsburg 54, Clear Spring 30
CLEAR SPRING (2-12, 0-12)
Mills 11, Forrest 10, Barnhart 9. Totals 11 5-12 30.
SMITHSBURG (8-6, 7-4)
Harbaugh 14, Koterwas 13, Owens 13, Andrukat 5, Gladhill 3, Holl 2, Shifflett 2, Shives 2. Totals 22 7-15 54.
Clear Spring     11    7    9    3    —    30
Smithsburg    9    13    25    7    —    54
3-point goals - Clear Spring 3 (Forrest 2, Barnhart). Smithsburg 3 (Andrukat, Koterwas, Owens).

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