Tom Smith was given both a math lesson and a victory yesterday. He only desired the latter.
Smith's Anne Arundel Community College women's basketball team countered the subtraction of one player with theaddition of another and routed visiting Harford Community College, 72-37, yesterday afternoon.
Archbishop Spalding graduate Kelly Horsley was lost to the Pioneers indefinitely for academic reasons, but Smith welcomed Jennifer Berg (Chesapeake), the lone returnee from last season who was ineligiblethe first semester.
"Kelly did a lot for us, a lot of things Jen will do now," Smith said, after Anne Arundel had improved to 6-2 overall and dropped Harford to 1-2. "Jen looks to score more inside. Kelly was more of a role player in high school, but she had just started looking to score.
"Jen gives us the addition of a shot blocker andscorer inside, but we'll miss Kelly. She did a lot of things people didn't always see."
What Berg did yesterday, in full view of a sparse crowd, was score 12 points and grab nine rebounds before going tothe bench with her fourth foul with just over seven minutes left in the game. By then, the Pioneers were comfortably ahead, 55-28.
"I was a little rusty," said Berg, a 5-foot-11 forward. "It took a while, but then I got the feel of it."
All the Pioneers looked rusty early on after a monthlong layoff. Harford led twice in the first sevenminutes, and a tentative Anne Arundel offense was limited to six points.
"They had a rough time getting going," Smith said. "We've hadsome problems where we're not a real quick-starting team for the first four or five minutes. But after that, we really get going and lookgood."
Severna Park graduate Katie Laidley tied the game, 8-8, ona baseline jumper and began a 13-0 run that ended with a basket fromthe Owls' Amy Gilmore. Laidley then sank two free throws, and Anne Arundel outscored Harford, 14-2, over the last eight minutes of the half to build what would be an insurmountable 33-12 lead.
Laidley scored 14 of her game-high 16 points in the opening half. Like Berg, she was forced to the bench after picking up her fourth foul with 12 minutes, 58 seconds left, but the damage was done.
She needed the time off, anyway, having sprained her left ankle during a Wednesday practice. She already was hobbled by a sprain to the right ankle last month, and wore braces on both yesterday.
"It didn't hurt at all thewhole game," said Laidley, who also had eight rebounds. "It felt kind of stiff in the beginning, but I just started running and with the flow of the game I didn't even think about it."
After a sluggish beginning, Anne Arundel's passing game began to click and everyone benefited. Sarah Krucoff (Arundel) scored inside to put the Pioneers ahead for good, 10-8, with 12 minutes left in the first half. Jen Rickard (Southern) then converted from the lane off a Krucoff pass, and Stacey Dent (South River) followed with another basket.
Krucoff buried an open jumper with 10 minutes remaining, and Berg scored off a Rickard pass after a Harford turnover, and the rout was on.
Meade graduate Nikki Beall offset the departures of Berg and Laidley by scoring 12 of her 14 points in the second half, including a pair of three-pointers. Rickard added eight points, DeShaw seven, Krucoff six, Amy Hercha (Glen Burnie) five and Dent four.
Every Pioneer had at leastone rebound, though Harford claimed a 43-39 edge on the boards. Anne Arundel only committed 10 turnovers, compared to 26 for the visitors.
Laura Daugherty led the Owls with 12 points. Kelly Simmons had 14 rebounds.