No. 1 ranking doesn't rattle Sabers

February 08, 1994|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,Contributing Writer

In the midst of last Tuesday's celebration after Southwestern had defeated Southern-Baltimore, a hoarse Southwestern coach Terry Leverett leaned on a wall by the locker room and talked about what he wanted to happen if they had won.

"I wanted the players to walk off the court gracefully and line up and shake hands," he said.

Of course, that didn't happen as Southwestern players and fans celebrated possibly the school's biggest victory, a 71-70 triumph over Southern, who was then ranked No. 1 in the area and No. 2 in the nation by USA Today.

The Sabers (13-0) are the area's new No. 1 team, becoming only the second team other than Dunbar, Lake Clifton and Southern to be ranked No. 1 since the 1986-87 season.

"This honor shows that our hard work has paid off," said senior guard Haywood Eaddy. "We have been working hard for the past three seasons and now we are respected."

The only other team to be ranked ranked No. 1 was St. Maria Goretti, which finished the 1986-87 season in the No. 1 position after stunning then-No. 1 and previously undefeated Lake Clifton, 73-72, in the Metro Classic in March 1987.

Southwestern's new role of the hunted instead of the hunter will be tested today at 3:30 with a home game against No. 5 Lake Clifton. And at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, the Sabers will visit No. 2 Southern for the rematch.

"We're not taking nothing for granted," said forward Donnie Joy. "We're taking it one game at a time. We have been preparing for Lake Clifton."

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