If Meade coach Butch Young had his druthers Friday night, his visiting Mustangs basketball squad wouldn't have beaten Broadneck the way it did.
But under the circumstances, he'll take it.
"This wasn't an easy game for them to play. They were down after getting hammered by Annapolis (94-59), and they've played through it," said Young, whose visiting Mustangs improved to 1-1 with their 45-42 win over the Bruins. "Tonight's game was tightly called, and I was glad to see that we could play a controlled game. But we would like to have played more than a half-court game."
Along the way, Meade had to overcome Broadneck's periodic full-court presses, its own poor free-throw shooting (8-for-15), a 6-1 deficit early in the first quarter and eight first-half turnovers.
"By no means is this loss a negative," said Broadneck coach Ken Kazmarek, whose Bruins were coming off of a season-opening 57-37 victory over Glen Burnie. "We were outmatched physically as far as height is concerned. We're young, and it's awfully early. The game came down to them getting those spurts in the second half when they needed them."
Many fans from Broadneck and Meade alike had shown up to see the Bruins' 7-foot-2 German import Boris Beck. They did -- but he only played long enough to get three rebounds and one foul shot.
Besides the officiating, there are at least three more things Young probably would have changed, if he could.
For one, he wouldn't have had to watch the Bruins' John Williams (15 points) miss a trio of three-point attempts with 30 seconds left in the game and with his squad holding leads of 43-40, 43-42 and by the winning margin.
It was Williams, after all, whose buzzer-beating three-pointer -- his second of two on the night -- gave the Bruins a 21-20 halftime lead. That, despite in-your-shirt defense by the Mustangs' Jason Thomas.
"I had a hard time getting open in the fourth quarter," said Williams.
"I have to give him credit because he was on me all night."
Young also would rather he didn't have to sit 6-foot-4 forward Ron Hubbard (12 points), who was in the middle of a hot streak with 2 minutes, 2 seconds left in the third quarter when he had to cool down for the rest of the period with three fouls.
The Mustangs led, 29-24, which -- at that point -- had been their biggest lead of the game.
Meade also got help from forward Lance Taylor (six points), who came off the bench for six rebounds, and center Brian Parker (five points).
Broadneck's Jeff Vincent (eight points) was his team's second leading scorer.
Although the Mustangs continually were fouled by the Bruins down the stretch, they were unable to take advantage for a big lead.
"That's (foul-shooting) something we should have worked on," said 6-1 guard David Beck, who finished with 16 points.
Ironically, it was Beck's foul shooting that eventually did the Bruins in.
With eight seconds left in the game, Marlon Bailey (seven points) scored inside for Broadneck, cutting the Mustangs' lead to 43-42. Broadneck, in a full-court press, fouled Beck in the backcourt, sending the junior to the line where he sank both shots to give his team a 45-42 lead.
Beck had missed all three of his attempts from the line in the first half, including both shots on a technical foul called against Kazmarek in the second quarter.
"We were slow getting out of the gate," said Beck. "But we finally got under control.