No. 10 Annapolis nails Meade, 96-72

January 15, 1994|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,Staff Writer

A much taller and deeper Annapolis went on a 16-0 run, featuring three consecutive three-pointers early in the fourth period, and --ed any hopes of a Meade comeback and career win No. 400 last night for coach Butch Young.

The 10th-ranked Panthers (9-2) turned a 12-point lead into a 28-point cushion and coasted to a 96-72 victory at Meade (6-5).

Young, who joked before the game that he didn't expect to get No. 400 "against that team [Annapolis]" stays on hold at 399-208.

It was the most points Annapolis has scored against Meade in coach John Brady's 17-year career.

The Panthers, who came in with four players averaging double digits, had one player over his seasonal average by two points.

The victors had a 33-20 rebounding edge over the Mustangs, whose tallest player is 6 feet 2 and who have only one 6-foot starter, Mike Ellis.

Annapolis out-rebounded Meade 20-9 at the half and 26-12 after three periods with 6-foot-5 Rodney Watts (five points) pulling down his game-high 12 rebounds in the first three periods.

Kelsey Watkins (11 points) fired in the first and third three-pointers in the final-period barrage, and point guard Juan "J.J." Johnson got the middle one in completing a superb all-around game.

Johnson had a team-high 22 points, six assists, a steal and three rebounds in leading the Panthers, who had nine players score. Ronnie Johnson (18 points), Lewis Day (14) and Rico Burke (10) were the other Panthers in double figures.

"J.J. played great and I thought that practically all of Kelsey's baskets were crucial," said Brady, savoring his 30th career win against Young and Meade.

"It seemed like every time Meade would go on a little run, Kelsey would hit one that would kill their run."

A check of the stat sheet showed that the coach was right, Watkins hit two early field goals, one of them a three-pointer, in the third period to push the Annapolis lead back to 15 points each time.

Then the two Watkins three-pointers, two of seven by the team, started the game-clinching run after Meade got within 71-59 early in the final period. Annapolis took a 71-55 lead into the last period, but Meade went on a 4-0 run to pull up at 71-59.

D'Andre Hiers hit two straight baskets to put the Mustangs within 12. Hiers finished with 16 points, second only to game-high 28 by Tyrone "Stick" Jones.

Jones also had 10 rebounds, five steals and three assists.

"When you play us, fatigue often becomes a factor, but it usually takes until the fourth period to wear down a good team like Meade," said Brady.

Brady played 14 athletes. Meade played eight players most of the way.

"Annapolis is just too quick and too big," said Young, who took the loss in stride. The Meade coach also said he "can't wait to get rid of that," referring to No. 400.

Brady said he had regret spoiling the 400th victory party and added "don't worry about Meade, they will take care of themselves. They're very athletic, know how to play, are well coached and any time you beat them on their home court it's a big win.

Meade was last year's 4A Region 4, now the East Region, champions and a state runner-up, and Annapolis hopes to regain the region title it last won in 1991 and return to Cole Field House. Annapolis is gunning for its 12th region title under Brady and the coach considers last night's victory a big step in that direction."

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