McDonogh dunks Calvert Hall Depth of Eagles' talent surfaces as team coasts past Cardinals, 110-70

January 14, 1998|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Virtually no one on the McDonogh swim team is idealistic enough to give the Eagles a fighting chance at sinking powerful Loyola for a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association championship. The Dons are just too deep, too good.

So as they came into their battle with host Calvert Hall yesterday in a matchup of unbeatens, the Eagles set out to show there's no shame in being No. 2.

McDonogh outpointed Calvert Hall in nine of 12 events, with Mike Wheeler and Jamie Todos combining to win five, as the Eagles rolled to a 110-70 victory at Hucht Pool. After 31 years without a win over the Cardinals, the Eagles have now defeated them twice in three years.

"We've come a really long way," said Wheeler. "We've done really well with what we have. We're a small school compared to Loyola, so I think being second is very respectable."

McDonogh (4-0 overall, 3-0 in the MIAA A Conference) now has a leg up in its pursuit. Despite winning only half the events, the Eagles used their depth to contin- uously score big points with second-, third- and fourth-place finishes.

"Our middle guys were outstanding. They were our unsung heroes," said McDonogh coach Scott Ward. "The guys that won were big, but what really helped us is that we got numerous seconds and thirds."

The Eagles showed their depth in the 100-yard freestyle. Despite a win in the event by Calvert Hall's Kevin Weisenborn, McDonogh still outpointed the Cardinals, 9-7, to widen their overall lead.

"They had a little more depth than I anticipated," said Calvert Hall coach George Kropp. "I thought we could win the first relay and they shut us out in that. Then I was hoping to get some thirds and fourths in a few events and again we got shut out. If you can't get those places, you're going to be in trouble."

McDonogh finished one-two both in the 200 individual medley and 200 freestyle. Those races gave the Eagles a 20-10 lead after two events, virtually negating the fact that their lack of divers essentially put them in a 10-point hole from the start.

Multiple winners, excluding relays, were Wheeler (100 back, 100 fly) and Todos (200 free, 500 free) of McDonogh and Weisenborn (50 free, 100 free) for Calvert Hall (3-1, 3-1).

Ward said his team isn't giving up hope for a championship this year, though he added that it would take a large dose of good luck.

"I think we're still two years away," Ward said. "First is a possibility [this year], but we would need help. Loyola would have to make a mistake, and if they did we'd be ready to seize it."

Pub Date: 1/14/98

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