Barnes, Joppatowne fall short vs. Westmar Mariners never find stride in 66-47 loss

March 09, 1996|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

For most of its opponents, Joppatowne has been just too much Brandi Barnes, but last night, the Mariners faced too much of Westmar's Jill McGowan.

The Wildcats' 5-foot-11 junior forward scored 27 points to lead Westmar to a 66-47 victory over Joppatowne in a state Class 1A semifinal last night at UMBC.

Barnes, a 6-2 forward who has signed with Maryland, never hit her offensive stride, finishing with 18 points, including eight from the free-throw line to go along with 13 rebounds and six blocks.

"They did an excellent job of doubling up on Brandi and denying the entry pass," said Joppatowne coach Roy Washington. "Brandi is the offense and when they double up on her, the guards have to knock down some shots in order to free her up and we just weren't hitting them."

The Mariners (14-11), who fell behind by as many as 16, rallied to within 52-42 with five minutes to go in the game, but McGowan fed Mindy Van Pelt then stole the ball and hit the layup to spark a 10-point Wildcats run that put away the Mariners.

McGowan stopped just about every Mariners' attempt to come back, leading Westmar (18-5) into tonight's state title game against Brunswick.

"She was driving, and being left-handed, it's difficult to play against her," said Barnes. "I have to give all credit to her. She was fearless. She really wanted it. We really wanted it to, but we fell a little short."

The Mariners, making their third straight appearance in the state final four, reached the championship two years ago for the first time in school history.

Joppatowne had its only lead of the game, 10-8, on two Barnes free throws midway through the first half, but the Mariners could not get Barnes into the offensive flow.

"I don't think it was a case of me being nervous," said Barnes. "I've been here two times before. Just I guess you could say an off-day."

The Wildcats' zones kept the ball away from her most of the first half and she shot only twice from the field in the half. Both times, she drove for layups.

She hit both but had only eight first-half points.

On defense, though, Barnes was a force, finishing with five blocks and seven defensive rebounds.

But McGowan also led her team's defense, picking up seven steals in the half. She was slow getting into the offense, too, missing a handful of layups early, but she ended up scoring 17 in the first half.

The Mariners pulled within 33-26 late in the half when Monique Washington converted a steal.

Washington also banked in the first basket of the second half to pull the Mariners within 35-28, but the Wildcats outscored Joppatowne, 11-2, over the next four minutes to boost their lead to 46-30.

Monique Washington scored nine for the Mariners and Nicole Baines added seven.

JOPPATOWNE -- Baines 7, Madry 4, Washington 9, Dehne 2, Barnes 18, Stout 6. Totals: 18 10-19 47.

WESTMAR -- Johnson 15, K. Morris 4, McGowan 27, Kelly 2, Van Pelt 10, Warnick 6, E. Morris 6, Duncan 2. Totals: 24 17-21 66 Halftime: Westmar, 35-26

Brunswick 51, Washington 31: Frederick County's Brunswick led the entire game en route to a victory over Washington from Somerset County in the other Class 1A semifinal.

Jessica Sowers, a 6-3 forward, led the Railroaders with 16 points while Katie Evancho added 11.

BRUNSWICK -- Foltz 8, Sowers 16, Raynor 4, Stockman 8, Evancho 11, Grams 4. Totals: 20 11-16 51.

WASHINGTON -- White 3, Benton 7, Fields 13, Nelson 4, Seward 2, Slade 2. Totals: 14 3-8 31. Halftime: Brunswick, 22-12

Pub Date: 3/09/96

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