Atholton stops center, not Damascus Central Maryland Tournament

December 31, 1992|By Michael Richman | Michael Richman,Contributing Writer

Atholton controlled one of Damascus' dominating players, but a teammate took over to lead the Hornets to a 53-43 victory last night.

In the championship of the Central Maryland Tournament, Atholton's defense limited 6-foot-1 center Kristy Geary to five points. But Damascus then turned to senior guard Theresa Arnett, and she responded with 20 points.

Arnett was named MVP for the two-day tournament at Atholton. She shot 8-for-18, and was all over the court with three forced turnovers, two assists and two steals.

"She certainly deserved that [award]," Atholton coach Paul Eckert said. "She's in a class with [Mount Hebron's] Erika McCauley and [Hammond's] Kacy Williams. You hope you can control her and minimize the damage."

In the boys championship, Montgomery County's Magruder defeated Frederick, 72-62.

Despite Arnett and a height disadvantage at every position on the floor, Atholton (4-4) nearly upset Damascus (5-2). Junior centers Robin McGraw and Nicole Blankenship shut down Geary.

Just two weeks ago, the Raiders fell to Damascus by 37. And, after three periods, with Damascus leading 41-25, it looked much the same story.

Atholton was led by senior forward Allison Valentino (15 points) and McGraw (13).

The Raiders opened the final quarter with an 18-6 run. Valentino and McGraw scored nine and five points during the stretch. Valentino's basket off an offensive rebound made it 47-43 with 2:00 remaining.

Damascus answered with consecutive baskets by Danielle Ball,

Christine Trunnell and Geary to account for the final score.

Atholton's fourth-quarter comeback resembled its second-period showing.

By converting seven of 10 shots in the second quarter, the Raiders inched back from a 15-5 deficit. They eventually took the lead, 20-19, on freshman guard Lea Nichols' 13-foot baseline shot. Nichols' basket capped a 6-0 run. The Hornets regained the edge before halftime and took control in the third period when the Raiders shot 1-for-7 and committed nine turnovers.

Earlier, Atholton defeated Sherwood, 85-61, in the boys consolation and Quince Orchard edged Francis Scott Key, 54-51, in the girls consolation.

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