Old Mill puts away Severna Park, 53-35

February 06, 1993|By Roch Eric Kubatko | Roch Eric Kubatko,Staff Writer

For a team that has beaten its opponents by an average of 34.5 points this season, Old Mill's six-point halftime lead over Severna Park yesterday must have felt more like a deficit.

"We weren't shooting particularly well in the first half," said junior guard Michelle Salmon. "We came out in the second half with the attitude that we should go out and put this game away."

The second-ranked Patriots did exactly that, outscoring No. 17 Severna Park 34-22 in the final 16 minutes to win, 53-35, and take sole possession of first place in the Anne Arundel County Friendship Division.

Salmon led the visiting Patriots, winners of 11 straight, with 10 points. Anne Chicorelli and Debbie Dawson each had nine points, and Chicorelli pulled down 14 rebounds.

Erin McNeally led Severna Park with 10 points.

Kris Drapalski's basket inside off a pass from Brandee Snyder gave the Falcons (13-3, 3-1) their only lead, 2-0. They fell behind 18-5 with 5:31 left in the first half, and looked like just another team taking a beating against the two-time defending Class 4A state champions.

But an 8-1 run to close the half put Severna Park back in contention, and put Old Mill (14-1, 4-0) in an unfamiliar position against a county team.

"In the second quarter, we just played like statues," said Patriots coach Pat Chance, whose team hasn't lost to a county opponent since Feb. 1, 1991, when North County sprang a 62-57 upset.

"We came out in the third quarter and started working the ball around more and moving more," she said.

Salmon said, "We weren't used to a close game at halftime, but I think we handled it exceptionally well."

The Falcons, who had won nine straight since losing twice in the Holly & Hoops Christmas tournament, cut the lead to 24-19 on two free throws from Amy Carnaggio. But Old Mill blew open the game by scoring 12 straight points, with Salmon beginning the run on a jumper and ending it with two free throws.

In between, Stacy Himes (eight points, 12 rebounds) and Christine Baer hit from the baseline, Chicorelli sank a turnaround jumper and Himes converted a pass from Lee Ann Lezzer. Allison Wentworth also forced Severna Park into one of its 24 turnovers with tight defense along the sideline.

"Old Mill didn't come out hot," said Falcons coach Kevin McGrath, whose team made just 12 field goals. "But you know how you hear about [Duke University's] Bobby Hurley making big shots that he hadn't hit all night long? They got those from a number of people. When you add that up, and they're playing dynamite half-court defense, we didn't score enough to overcome that."

Chance said her team's problems in the first half stemmed partly from "warming up too much before the game.

"We thought the game started at 5:15 and it didn't start until 5:30. We were out on the court and I didn't want them to warm up that long, but they wanted to," she said.

"We've been in a lot of tight ballgames before -- not in the county, but in the [IAABO] Christmas tournament and over the past four years -- and I knew they'd come out OK."

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