Centennial wins, 72-65, ends tied for county title

February 26, 1993|By Michael Richman | Michael Richman,Contributing Writer

When the buzzer sounded to end Centennial's 72-65 victory over Glenelg yesterday, Eagles coach Jim Hill had reason to be happy, even if he didn't know if his No. 19 Eagles would finish tied for first place or in sole possession of second in Howard County.

Trailing by one at halftime, the Eagles broke the game open, displaying the hot hand and tuning up for postseason play. They converted 16 of 30 shots, stretching the lead to 10 points in the third quarter and 17 in the fourth. The Gladiators hit only 12 of 32 shots.

"I am very pleased with the way we finished up the season," Hill said. "We faced some adversity and we could have played very lax basketball but we didn't. We played hard and we won a game we should have won. Glenelg is certainly a very formidable opponent, a talented team."

As it turned out, Howard's 67-63 shocker over Hammond left Centennial and Hammond co-county champions at 9-5. It's the first tie since 1972 with Mount Hebron and Atholton.

Centennial senior forward Brian Hulka scored a career-high 29 points, 18 in the second half. He compared the Eagles' second-half performance to last Friday's, when they scored 56 in a 67-66 loss to Hammond.

"It's one of the best halves I've ever seen us play," said Hulka. "We were really alive, playing great defense and boxing out. The defense led to the offense."

Centennial (17-5) opens in Class 3A Region III play Monday by playing host to Douglass.

Recently, Glenelg (15-7, 8-6) was ranked 20th in the area with sights on a county championship. With a Class 2A Region II playoff game Monday at home, however, the Gladiators are a step out of sync. Glenelg finished third in the county.

"Some of the chemistry that we had at the beginning of the season doesn't seem to be there," said coach Terry Coleman, whose team matched its best winning total since 1983. "If we don't find it quick, we're going to be in trouble Monday night."

Before the Eagles took control, both teams endured a first half laden with momentum swings. There were nine lead changes and five ties.

Centennial opened an 11-7 first-period lead on Brett Berkeley's offensive rebound and basket. Glenelg, however, rebounded from a five-minute scoring drought to cap the quarter with a 6-0 run.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.