Family problems forced Marlon Barbour to move out of the Catonsville school district after his sophomore year. He came back this season for his senior year, and the Comets are glad he did.
Barbour scored 19 points and was a force inside all evening, as the Comets (9-0, 7-0) out-ran host Dulaney (6-2, 4-2), 90-74, in a Baltimore County 3A-4A game last night.
Teron Owens also had 19, and David Clark scored 18 for Catonsville.
"He's a real warrior inside," Catonsville coach Art Gamzon said of Barbour. "We have several good outside shooters, and he gives us the presence we need inside."
Barbour's performance took some of the luster off a fine effort by Dulaney's Albert Smith, the area's third-leading scorer, who had 47 points.
"We tried several different players on him, but he got his points anyway," Gamzon said of Smith. "He's a fine athlete."
Smith led Dulaney early, scoring 14 points in the first quarter. The Lions trailed by only 24-22 after the first quarter, but the Comets, led by Barbour's and Travis Terrell's four points each, went on a 14-2 run to begin the second quarter and build a 38-24 lead.
After baskets by Smith and Corey Jones cut the lead to 10, Catonsville ran off nine of the next 13 points to take a 47-34 halftime margin.
Dulaney battled back early in the second half, cutting the difference to 58-52 with 2 minutes, 30 seconds left. But the Comets rallied again, scoring 12 of the next 17 points to take a 70-57 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Dulaney assistant coach Tony Donia, substituting for head coach Glen Snyder, who is recovering from cancer, praised Barbour's effort.
"I was an assistant at Catonsville two years ago, so I knew he was a capable player," Donia said. "He can play defense, he can shoot and he runs the floor well. He was the difference tonight."