Mitchell's 40 points spur Randallstown past Woodlawn, 65-56

January 25, 1994|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,Contributing Writer

Just how bad did things look for the No. 8 Randallstown girls basketball team down the stretch of yesterday's game against rival Woodlawn?

First, the host Rams lost the lead and control of the game to the Warriors. Then, star forward Nyota Mitchell -- perhaps the best county player -- suffered a hard blow to the chest that apparently triggered an asthma attack.

But once the senior got back on her feet, things began to look better for the Rams.

Mitchell scored 15 of her game-high 40 points in the final four minutes to help the Rams rally for a 65-56 victory in a Baltimore County 3A-4A League game.

With her team trailing, 51-47, with 3:51 to play -- thanks in large part to six three-pointers by Rams guard Anika Lee (26 points) -- Mitchell said she took it upon herself to help carry the team over the top.

"I just wanted to show the team that I was picking up the intensity," said Mitchell, who also had 18 rebounds and seven assists. "Once they saw that I was, I was hoping they would, too."

Randallstown (12-1 overall, 11-0 league) did just that, employing the full-court press and outscoring Woodlawn 18-5 in the final 3:51 to win going away.

The game marked the first time either side took the court as a team since last week's snowstorm. For Rams coach Dave Wright, that was a major contributor to the final score.

"Anytime you don't play for 10 days and you come back and face a quality team, you're in for a tough game," said Wright. "We played about as poorly as we could play."

For Woodlawn, however, the story was just the opposite.

The Warriors (5-4, 5-4) have been improving steadily since they began the season with three straight losses. Though the loss snapped a five-game winning streak, it was much better played than Woodlawn's 15-point loss to Randallstown earlier this season.

For coach Mary Duckworth, her team's lack of depth was the biggest difference between the teams. While the Warriors generally use no more than two players off the bench, the Rams go as many as 10 or 11 deep.

"It's tough to play a team with all that depth," said Duckworth. "Mentally and physically, we were tired."

Woodlawn also was beaten badly in rebounding, where the taller Rams held a 48-26 margin. They also scored the majority of their baskets on second chances.

With Woodlawn leading 51-49 midway through the fourth quarter, the turning point of the game occurred when Randallstown guard Kim Brown (six points, 10 assists) was fouled on a three-point attempt, and made all three shots from the line to give her team a 52-51 lead.

The Rams never trailed again.

"I think that was a real turning point," said Wright. "This team has a tendency to coast, but I think from then on, we just decided to play."

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