McLoud: Saints' one-man show

December 17, 1992|By Roch Eric Kubatko | Roch Eric Kubatko,Staff Writer

Two games last weekend may have provided a sneak preview of Charlie McLoud's season.

The St. Mary's guard scored 27 points against Gilman in the first round of the Laker Invitational at Boys' Latin, then came back with 32 against Sidwell Friends the next day. He often dominated play at both ends of the floor with his vast repertoire of offensive moves and relentless work on the boards.

And still, his team lost, as it had all season before yesterday's 92-48 victory over Park School, which gave the Saints a 1-4 record.

"We've got to start winning," said McLoud, a 6-foot senior who led St. Mary's yesterday with 26 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.

At the beginning of the week, McLoud was the third-leading scorer in the metro area at 26.8 points, and ranked among its leading rebounders at 10.3.

"He plays a lot bigger than he is," said first-year St. Mary's coach Hank Gareis, who assisted former coach Jim Sheehan last season and ran the junior-varsity program. "He has good leaping ability, good timing and a real nose for the ball. He has a knack for knowing where the ball is going when it's shot, getting the rebound and putting it back."

McLoud finally proved human Monday afternoon, scoring a season-low four points in a 64-34 drubbing by No. 15 Severn.

"I wasn't getting the ball, and I got discouraged. And I didn't shoot real well, either," he said.

McLoud, 17, joined the varsity after transferring from Lake Braddock High (Va.) last year, when St. Mary's was coming off of a 5-20 season. With a slashing style that ripped through most defenses, he led the team in scoring at 16.0 points, , and the Saints doubled their win total.

He went out in grand fashion last year, with a game-high 20 points in a 51-45 loss to Severn in the Maryland Scholastic Association C Conference semifinals. The Admirals were ahead 47-26 early in the fourth quarter when he sparked a 17-4 run with seven points to put his team back into contention.

This was nothing new. Word already had gotten out on McLoud by the time his team reached the brink of the championship game.

Against Park on Jan. 21, he scored a game-high 18 points, including a 15-footer with two seconds left to give St. Mary's a 47-46 win. He also grabbed seven rebounds.

Before the game, Park coach Web Johnson told his players: "You are going to have to stop No. 12 [McLoud]; that is the key. He is one of the best players in the league."

On the decisive shot, Johnson had his team in a 1-3-1 zone, with "a man in McLoud's face," but he hit the jumper anyway.

McLoud tried to orchestrate another comeback against Gilman last Friday. Having scored 11 of the Saints' first 14 points, he ran off the first six in the second half to reduce their deficit to 43-37. But on this day, he was the second-best player on the floor. Senior guard Jimmy Fields had 38 points and nine steals to lead the Greyhounds to a 74-60 win.

In the consolation game against Sidwell Friends, McLoud scored more than half of his team's points in a 61-55 defeat.

"I thought if we could win a game there, it would show people that we're not that bad," he said. "And maybe that would get things going, get our confidence up."

Before the tournament, he scored 23 points against Beth Tfiloh, but the Saints came up losers again, 56-52. He accounted for 13 of St. Mary's 19 field goals, and 28 points, in a 52-43 season-opening loss at Chesapeake.

"We played against him last year and he is definitely one of the better players in the league," said Boys' Latin coach Hugh Gelston, whose team visits St. Mary's on Feb. 1 in the realigned MSA B Conference.

"But, usually, one player isn't going to beat you."

"It gets frustrating," McLoud said. "You need to win. But I just go out every day, play my hardest and try to get things going for the team."

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