Wilde Lake holds off Catoctin, 45-40 Girls Class 1A, Region II

March 06, 1993|By Chuck Acquisto | Chuck Acquisto,Contributing Writer

The magic number for Wilde Lake's girls basketball team has been 40 all season. The Wildecats are 12-1 when scoring 40 points or more, 0-7 when scoring 39 or fewer.

Second-seeded Wilde Lake (13-8) surpassed 40 against visiting Catoctin last night with 4:25 remaining in the fourth quarter, but the Wildecats had to withstand a late rally by the Cougars to win, 45-40, in the Class 1A, Region II semifinal.

Wilde Lake, winning its first postseason game under second-year head coach Kelli Rosati, advances to play at top-seeded and No. 17 Milford Mill (18-4) for the Class 1A, Region II championship today at 1 p.m.

Wilde Lake, with leading scorer Tracy Stefan (12.4 ppg) struggling with her shooting (2-for-20, six points), turned to 5-foot-6 junior guard Kim Driessen for fourth-quarter offense. Driessen (10 points) responded with six straight points to push the Wildecats' lead to 41-33 with 4:25 left in the game.

"I didn't produce any points in the first three quarters, and I knew that I had to score [with Tracy struggling]," said Driessen, who averaged 5.1 points per game in the regular season. "In the fourth quarter, I knew we could beat this team, but that I would have to do a bit more."

Catoctin (16-9), committing 21 turnovers in the game's first three quarters to offset Wilde Lake's erratic shooting (19 of 79), gained revenge by turning up the full-court pressure on the Wildecats.

After a Wilde Lake turnover, Catoctin sophomore guard Elizabeth McCurdy converted the Cougars' first three-point basket after eight straight misses from beyond the three-point arc. McCurdy's three-pointer, followed by teammate Erica Wiley's layup, cut the Wildecats' lead to 41-38 with 3:32 left, forcing Rosati to call a timeout.

Wilde Lake increased the lead to 43-38 when sophomore forward Anika Middleton rebounded Driessen's missed shot and made a layup.

McCurdy forced Wilde Lake's seventh turnover of the fourth quarter, stealing an errant pass and going in for a layup that sliced the Wildecats' lead to 43-40 with 1:19 to go.

Catoctin, however, would draw no closer. McCurdy's desperation three-point attempt with 11 seconds bounced off the rim. Wilde Lake sophomore forward Adelle Chenier gathered in the rebound. Catoctin fouled senior guard Tamika Bell with two seconds left, and Bell made both free throws to seal the victory.

Catoctin was led by sophomore forward Jessie McIlrath (12 points, 11 rebounds) and senior forward Vicky Seiss (12 points).

"Basketball's a game of matchup, and to be honest, we started this game out a little too tentative," Catoctin coach Dick McCurdy said. "I thought we played well in the fourth quarter, had our chances, but missed some key shots at the end."

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