Gulls' Lambert still searching for 400th win Salisbury coach hopes fifth attempt is charm

January 31, 1998|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

Thirteen nightmarish days and counting.

That's where Salisbury State basketball coach Ward Lambert stands today in his frustrating quest for 400 victories.

Four times in 13 days, Lambert has sent his Division III team on the floor in search of the elusive 400 milestone, and each time the Sea Gulls have come up short in a stretch that is wrecking what once was a promising season.

When Lambert, in his 28th season at Salisbury, was asked Thursday what winning 400 games meant to him, he said, "Nothing. I've been here a long time. I'm more interested in achieving our goals as a team. I expected a lot of good things from this team. I thought we would be a powerful team."

Salisbury was 6-5 overall and 2-1 in the Capital Athletic Conference on Jan. 17 when Lambert first attempted to win No. 400 against Goucher College in Towson.

A strong Goucher team denied Lambert that night with a 100-81 win in a Capital Athletic Conference game, so it was on to Arlington, Va., four nights later for a game against a Chuck Driesell-coached Marymount squad, which would surprise Salisbury, 91-80, in another league game.

Salisbury had an excellent opportunity three nights later to tie Mary Washington at 87 with 6.3 seconds left when 78 percent free-throw shooter Eric Prendeville went to the line for two shots, but the Sea Gulls still lost that game, 93-88.

Prendeville hit just one of two and Salisbury never caught up in the final seconds.

So the Sea Gulls and Lambert had to wait and try again three nights ago on their home court against the CAC's first-place team, Catholic University.

What happened in that game just heaped more frustration on Salisbury, which fell to 6-9 overall and 2-5 in the league with a 107-106 loss in overtime.

The Sea Gulls blew a five-point lead in the final 1: 04 of regulation, sending the game into overtime, where Salisbury had a chance to win on a running 10-footer by Shawn Johnson just before the buzzer.

Johnson missed and the Sea Gulls had lost despite 29 points from 5-foot-10 senior George Robinson and 21 points by Johnson.

So what happens next?

A fifth try for Lambert's 400th will come tonight against St. Mary's College.

State to honor Terps women

The three-time defending national champion Maryland women's lacrosse team will be honored by the Maryland Senate at 8 p.m. Monday in Annapolis.

The Terps became the first Division I women's lacrosse team to win three straight national championships last spring when they defeated Loyola, 8-7.

Maryland also has won an NCAA record five national lacrosse championships.

Maryland coach Cindy Timchal said, "This is truly an honor for myself, Maryland women's lacrosse and the University of Maryland."

Pub Date: 1/31/98

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