Poets pound Edmondson, meet Carver for region title Polley has triple double as Dunbar cruises, 71-45

March 01, 1996|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

No. 2 Dunbar continued its quest for a fourth straight state title yesterday with a 71-45 victory over Edmondson in a 3A East region semifinal that passed without incident.

The Poets' regular-season game at Edmondson (10-11) was canceled in progress last week due to gunfire. That incident prompted the principals of both schools to close to the public Tuesday's 76-58 Edmondson quarterfinal victory over visiting Broadneck.

Security for yesterday's game included the use of metal detectors at the door. Only those with student identification, on lists prepared by the principals of each school, or coaches with state association-issued passes were permitted to enter.

"We've been very fortunate at Dunbar to have games without violence," said Dunbar principal Charlotte Brown. Dunbar next meets Carver tomorrow at 1 p.m. for the region championship.

Vander Bannister (15 points) and Atman Smith (13) were the scoring leaders for Dunbar (18-6). But senior Tommy Polley had a triple double (11 points, 13 assists, 10 rebounds) as eight players scored for the Poets.

After scoring 36 points and grabbing 12 rebounds against No. 9 Broadneck, Edmondson's Virgil Singleton (6-for-8 free throws) was held to 11 points by Dunbar's Smith -- seven of which came during the fourth period when Poets coach Paul Smith began using reserves, who still outscored the visitors, 18-16.

Singleton (six rebounds) had just four points during the first half, after which his team trailed, 32-18. "He's a good shooter and penetrater, but Atman played great defense and never slacked off," said junior Dunbar guard Durrell Garrett, who finished with eight points and six assists.

It was a tight game early before Smith made it 14-6 on two free throws and a three-pointer. Arnold Bowie (eight points) later put Dunbar ahead, 20-11, on two free throws, followed by a lay-up.

After a second-quarter technical on Polley, his third foul benched him for the final 3:41 of the half, Singleton's free throws brought the Redskins within 24-16. But the Redskins' Reggie O'Dell rimmed a three-point attempt, and the Poets closed with an 8-2 run.

"Other teams feel we can be taken without Tommy, but we stepped up and proved we could give a team effort," said Bannister, a 6-foot-3 junior. "They really came to win, so we had to earn their respect."

Chris Green (12 points, five rebounds) and Antoine Word (11, eight) contributed for Edmondson, but "we only had five points in the third quarter, and with Tommy benched, we didn't capitalize," said Edmondson coach James James, whose squad has just two seniors. "At one point, we missed five straight. Our point guard [Brian Daniels] lost about 10 points that way."

Polley returned to spark his team in the third quarter, assisting on the first two baskets by Bannister and Chris Dean (12 points, 14 rebounds).

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