Poly and Mervo storm into championship game

December 29, 1993|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,Contributing Writer

Unfavorable driving conditions kept the crowd to a minimum for last night's opening round of the fourth annual Gilman Greyhounds Alumni Holiday Basketball Tournament, but the smattering of fans that made it to the Finney Athletic Center got to witness a classic battle between the haves and the have-nots.

In this case, Poly represented the haves as it possessed the height, speed, and ultimately a 62-52 victory over McDonogh.

"I think we wore them down as the game went on, or at least I hope we did," said Engineers coach Bucky Kimmett. "We're not a super team and I think we lack the killer instinct, but overall I'm pleased because we're still trying to see who our best combinations are."

In the other first-round game, Mervo broke it open in the third quarter and held on to escape with a 62-60 win over the Greyhounds.

The Mustangs, who outscored their opponent 24-8 in the pivotal third quarter, were led in scoring by Sterling Finch, who netted a game-high 21 points, including eight in the third quarter.

Gilman (6-4, 3-0), which led 21-18 at the half, was led by Than'l Badder with 17 points and Jimmy Fields with 11.

"I've never seen a quarter last so long," said Mervo coach John Blake, whose team was sent to the foul line for 29 shots in the fourth quarter. "They kept fouling us every two seconds and no time was coming off the clock. But it was very effective."

Poly (4-3, 2-0) took advantage of eight straight McDonogh misses and four turnovers to take a 19-11 lead with 2:21 remaining left in the half after a jumper by sophomore forward Marcus McClean. McClean finished with a team-high 15 points and teammates David Green and Brian Scott added 13 and 12, respectively.

The Engineers, who converted 18 of 24 free throws, nearly put the game away in the second half. Poly extended the lead to 20 in the fourth quarter on baskets by Justin Robinson and Clinton Young, but found itself leading by only seven with just over three minutes remaining after a follow shot by Bobby Sabelhaus. But Poly hit seven of eight foul shots down the stretch to end the McDonogh (3-2, 3-0) comeback.

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