1994-1995 All-howard County Boys Basketball

March 16, 1995|By Rick Belz


* Jim Albert, Atholton: Highly respected among his peers, Albert convinced the county-champion Raiders that if they played defense they would be tough to beat. They did. And they were.

At 21-2, the Raiders posted the school's best record. They lost one league game by three points to Oakland Mills. Their other loss was a four-point upset by Glenelg in the Class 2A South region semifinals.

Albert, 47, has been Atholton's coach for 15 seasons. The team was 17-6 and county co-champions a year ago. He also coached a county champion in 1986, and took a team to the state semifinals in 1982.

A native of Johnstown, Pa., where he played high school football, basketball and baseball, he attended Cisco Junior College in Texas on a basketball scholarship and graduated from Towson State. He has taught physical education at Atholton for 23 years.

* Dave Appleby, Oakland Mills: He's the county's most successful boys basketball coach with a 12-year career record at Oakland Mills of 191-76. That includes six county titles, five regional titles and one state title in 1990, when the Scorpions went 22-2.

This season Oakland Mills (22-4) rebounded from back-to-back losing seasons by finishing second in the county, one game behind Atholton. The Scorpions reached the Class 2A state finals -- the only county boys team to make the final four. A year ago, the Scorpions were 5-15 and finished last in the league.

Few expected such a strong season, because Oakland Mills started two sophomores and a junior transfer, Irving Conwell, who didn't finish out the season at Hammond a year ago.

When one of those sophomores, the team's best defensive player and third-leading scorer, Fardan Carter, was taken off the team by his mother with six league games remaining because of poor academics, most people expected the team to crash. It didn't. Instead it won nine straight games before losing in the state final to three-time state champion Dunbar.

Appleby, 45, is a native of upstate New York. He played high school football, basketball and baseball. He graduated from the University of Maryland and taught physical education at Talbott Springs Elementary for 10 years. He has been an elementary school guidance counselor for five years.


* Mike Hill, Oakland Mills, 6-3, Sr., F: The all-time leading scorer in school history with 1,248 career points, Hill led the county in scoring this season with a 22.8 per-game average. He shot 54 percent from the floor and made 36 three-point baskets. He averaged nine rebounds.

His top scoring game was 39 against Thomas Johnson, but he also had 36 against Loyola, and 32 and 31 against Hammond. He scored 27 in the state semifinal against South Hagerstown.

"He's equally comfortable at the post or the perimeter. He's devoted to the game and has an outstanding work ethic at practice and during the off-season," Appleby said.

Hill's best all-around effort was a 27-point, 16-rebound game against Aberdeen. He's a Baltimore Sun two-time first-team All-Howard County selection who averaged 21.5 points as a junior and 19 as a sophomore.

* Carl Jackson, Wilde Lake, 6-8, Jr., C: The 250-pounder led the league in rebounding with 292 in 23 games for a 12.6 average. His season-high rebounding game was 18. He also led the league in blocked shots with 126 for a 5.4 average.

Jackson, nicknamed Baby Shaq, scored 309 points for a 13.4 average, and shot 46 percent from the floor. His high game was 24 points against Magruder.

"I'm thrilled to have him on my team," Wilde Lake coach Paul Ellis said. "He's a real good passer, very competitive and was always double-teamed and sometimes triple-teamed."

Jackson's best league game was during a 50-37 upset of Mount Hebron in which he outplayed honorable mention All-American Patrick Ngongba by scoring 19 points, grabbing eight rebounds and blocking seven shots. He also had 20 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks in a one-point loss to state finalist Oakland Mills.

His best overall game was against Magruder when he scored 24 points, had 18 rebounds and blocked eight shots. Wilde Lake finished 12-11.

* Patrick Ngongba, Mount Hebron, 6-7, Jr., C: Ngongba, the muscular native of the Central African Republic and the subject of much media attention, averaged 17 points, 10 rebounds (220), 3.2 assists (68) and 1.8 steals (40) per game. He shot 52 percent (133-255) from the floor, and made 110 of 171 (64 percent) free throws for 15-8 Mount Hebron.

Ngongba, who is transferring to Calvert Hall, was noted for his monster dunks and vicious blocks.

Always a feared defensive player, he improved his low-post moves greatly last season when he was a Baltimore Sun second-team all-county selection.

His two-year totals for 42 games at Mount Hebron were 601 points and 382 rebounds. His high scoring games this season were 33 against Poly and 32 against Loyola.

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