Poly outlasts Mount Hebron, 67-59

March 05, 1994|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,Sun Staff Writer

Mount Hebron was hoping to boost Howard County's basketball reputation by beating Poly yesterday in the Class 3A East regional semifinal.

Poly (17-6), which plays a tougher Baltimore City schedule and has a much deeper and more athletic team than Mount Hebron (17-5), was hoping to advance to the final after getting disqualified from last season's playoffs for using an ineligible player.

Third-seeded Poly achieved its goal with a 67-59 victory and plays host to sixth-seeded Douglass today.

Fifteenth-ranked and second-seeded Mount Hebron achieved part of its goal.

The Vikings hung with Poly for three quarters. The teams were tied 46-46 heading into the fourth quarter.

"I think a lot of people didn't think we could play with them, but we did and represented Howard County well," Vikings coach Scott Robinson said. "Their depth was the difference. It wore us down in the fourth quarter."

Mount Hebron led 32-29 at halftime due largely to an 18-point first-half effort from junior guard Kurtis Jestes (24 points).

Patrick Ngongba, 6-foot-6 junior center, scored nine that half for Mount Hebron and grabbed six rebounds.

"I thought we just didn't play as hard as we could in the first half," Poly coach Bucky Kimmett said. "[David] Green made the big difference for us by stepping up in the second half. Maybe they [Mount Hebron] tired out. I'm happy to be playing Douglass."

Poly has split with Douglass in two previous games.

Green (10 points, five rebounds) said his team had trouble talking to one another because of the crowd noise at Mount Hebron's packed gymnasium.

"We couldn't hear anything," he said. "It was hard. But we like playing on the road, even though we didn't get any help from the officials tonight and expected that."

Poly had one starter, Brian Scott (26 points, eight rebounds) foul out with about two minutes to play and had three other players with four fouls.

But Mount Hebron didn't take full advantage of the foul situation, sinking just 16 of 25 free throws. Poly was 13-for-15 at the line.

Poly pressed and played a half-court zone defense that featured a trap off the first pass. Those traps helped create eight rTC turnovers by Mount Hebron in the third quarter and gave the Engineers a bunch of easy baskets.

"In the fourth quarter they just made their shots and we didn't," Jestes said.

Poly opened that quarter with a 10-point run by hitting five of its first seven shots.

Mount Hebron went cold, missing its first five shots of that quarter. It made only three of 16 fourth-quarter shots.

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