If Broadneck High's basketball team decides to move north and play its home games at Catonsville Community College, the reason will be quite apparent.
The 10th-ranked Bruins improved their four-year record at CCC to 12-0 by beating No. 11 Edmondson, 62-58, in the championship game of the Wes Unseld Tournament last night.
Broadneck (8-1) has won the tournament the past four years. The only other team to win it was Southern (Baltimore), in the inaugural tournament in 1986.
Yesterday, Broadneck led by 13 early and rallied from a 56-53 deficit with two minutes left, thanks to a key defensive play by junior guard Jeff Vincent, who helped keep his team in the game early with his three-point shooting and led Broadneck with 20 points.
After Damian Spain hit two free throws with 2 minutes, 33 seconds left to cut the Redskins' lead to 56-55, Vincent stole the ball as Edmondson (2-1) tried to run the clock down and he made a layup while being fouled. He completed the three-point play to put Broadneck ahead, 58-56.
Vincent made two free throws with 1:03 left after another Edmondson turnover to make it 60-56, but Garfield Griffin's follow layup for Edmondson cut it to 60-58 with 40 seconds left.
The Redskins had a chance to tie the game after Matt Weimer missed the front end of a one-and-one, but Maurice Blanding missed a short jumper with 35 seconds left. Broadneck's Spain rebounded and was fouled. He made both free throws with nine seconds left to account for the final margin.
"This was the toughest of the four [championship games]," said Broadneck coach Ken Kazmarek, whose team returned just one starter from last year. "We played three consecutive tough games against three good teams. It's a tribute to the kids that they never panicked."
One reason was senior point guard John Williams, who scored 19 and ran the Broadneck offense well, despite constant pressure from at least three Edmondson guards.
"He's the main cog in the engine that makes us go," Kazmarek said of Williams, the only returning starter. "He was in control of the game all night."
Freshman point guard Randolph Edison led the Redskins, who are favored to win the Maryland Scholastic Association B Conference this season, with 16 points, and junior guard Devin Ross had 11.
"We played a heck of a game," said Edmondson coach James James. "One or two errors were the difference. To play with a team like Broadneck, I was impressed. That tells a lot about our ballclub."
Neither team shot well from the field. Edmondson hit 25 of 55 shots, and Broadneck made just 16 of 47. The big difference was at the free-throw line, where Broadneck hit 27 of 34 and Edmondson five of 11.
Broadneck raced to a 19-8 first-quarter lead despite hitting just five of 15 field-goal attempts. The Bruins scored the last nine points of the quarter, as Edmondson failed to score on its last five possessions, missing two shots and turning the ball over three times. The Redskins made just three of 16 field-goal attempts in the quarter.
Edmondson found its shooting touch in the second quarter and trailed, 29-27, at the half. The Redskins hit three of their first four field-goal attempts and five straight during a 10-1 run that sent them ahead, 25-24. Edmondson made nine of 15 field-goal tries, and Broadneck made just three of 16 and went nearly five minutes without a field goal.
Broadneck still held the lead, 48-44, after three quarters, although Edmondson hit seven of 12 field-goal attempts in the quarter. The Redskins tied the score once and got within one three times.