Question: Name the only team in the metro area not to play a home game at this point of the season?
Before yesterday, the answer was No. 1 Dunbar, which finally was able to enjoy its confines in defeating No. 18 Southwestern, 100-73, in a Maryland Scholastic Association A Conference Division I game.
Junior forward Keith Booth scored a game-high 29 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for the Poets (18-0, 3-0). Guard Michael Lloyd added 28 and six steals and center Donta Bright had 15 and 12 rebounds.
The nationally top-ranked Poets have played in the area at Mount St. Joseph, Loyola, Poly, and Towson State for last weekend's Charm City Classic, but hadn't played at Dunbar since defeating Walbrook, 116-66, on Feb. 12, 1991.
Back home after defeating eight teams in USA Today's Super 25 and participating in tournaments in Johnstown, Pa., St. Louis, Honolulu, Myrtle Beach, S.C., and Erie, Pa., Dunbar never was seriously threatened after the opening period.
"It's good to be back home," said Booth, 6 feet 7. "Since we only have four home games, we just want to give a good game every time out, especially for the home crowd."
In the first half, Booth scored 22 as the Poets took a 53-28 lead. Dunbar led 24-17 after the first quarter, before scoring 15 straight to open the second quarter.
Sophomore guard Haywood Eaddy led Southwestern (7-6, 2-3) with 12 points and five assists. Guard Issac Williams and forward Andre Swann added 11 each.
Though they were riding a five-game losing streak, the Sabres stayed with the Poets in the opening period, leading on three occasions before Dunbar gained complete control in the second quarter.
"I say it was respectable in the sense they played pretty good in spurts," said Southwestern coach Terry Leverett. "The only way we could beat them is to play flawlessly, and we came up short."
After meeting the challenges of the nationally ranked opponents, the Poets will be facing another stiff test when they meet the area's No. 2 team, Southern, Friday at Morgan State.
It will be the first meeting between the teams since last year's MSA A Conference title game, which the Poets won, 81-62. Dunbar also won the regular-season game, 81-44, and 59-55, in the Baltimore City Public Schools Tournament finals last year.