Westminster holds off Old Mill rally, 58-54 Davis hits late free throws to ice it for visiting Owls

March 03, 1998|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,SUN STAFF

Westminster (15-8), in deep foul trouble, built a 52-41 lead on host Old Mill (13-9) with 5: 25 left in the game, then had to hold off the tenacious Patriots down the stretch for a Class 4A West victory last night, 58-54.

Old Mill closed to 54-50 on two free throws by Noel Cruz at 1: 19, and when Craig Hall put back a rebound, it got his side to within 56-54 with nine seconds left.

Sean Davis promptly was fouled and the 92 percent shooter made two shots. Davis, who had four of his team's eight three-point goals, ended with a season-high 28 points, followed by Aaron Krug with 12 points.

For Old Mill, which stayed in the hunt by knocking down foul shots, Noel Cruz had 19, Tim Smith 14 and Hall 13.

Westminster made only one-third of its first-half shots, and Old Mill was little better in going off at the break with a 29-26 lead.

A three-pointer by Krug and another by Davis helped the Owls go ahead 37-34, as the Patriots went three minutes without a point. Another Krug three-pointer and two baskets by Billy Bowman helped the visitors produce a 49-37 cushion a minute into the fourth quarter.

The visitors held that 52-41 margin with five minutes left, but coach Dave Byers had no intention of slowing things down at that point. "I told them to keep playing," he said. "We were in awful foul trouble.

"We had an eight-point lead when I took Desmond Esteves out [four personals]. We were just trying to steal some time."

Esteves, the team's point guard and leader, went back out and was there to make two free throws for a 56-52 lead with 55 seconds left. Ahead of Cruz's two foul shots, the Patriots missed two shots from right around the basket.

"I started quick [two of his team's first three baskets], then missed a couple, but picked it up again," Davis said. "They were tough, and just kept picking up their intensity."

Of making the last two foul shots that iced things, he said, "I like the pressure."

No. 1 Dunbar 86, South River 70: Jamal Brown scored a game-high 31 points to lead the third-seeded Poets (21-3) to a 2A East win over the sixth-seeded Seahawks. Senior Larry Tucker and junior Arnold Bowie scored 15 points each for Dunbar, which travels to Southern-AA Thursday.

Senior Pernell Jackson led South River with 24 points.

Fallston 94, No. 8 Woodlawn: The host Cougars (16-6) scored the game's first 11 points and never looked back as they upset the Warriors (20-5) in a 3A North quarterfinal game. Junior Aaron Stephenson (21) led four Fallston players in double figures. John Caslin added 19, Jim Groh 11 and Lee Tayson 14. Senior Damon Garris led Woodlawn with 17 points.

No. 7 Meade 77, Queen Anne's 64: The Mustangs (19-5) outscored the Lions (14-9) 47-24 in the second half to break open a close game.

Senior David Stangee scored 21 points with 13 rebounds, and junior Jeff Charles had 16 points, seven blocks and nine rebounds for Meade.

No. 9 Randallstown 69, North Harford 57: Kareem Holmes and Thomas Stallings each scored 14 as the host Rams (20-4) advanced to the semifinals of the Class 2A North regional. Casey Garland led North Harford with 12.

No. 12 Aberdeen 75, No. 6 Milford Mill 61: Stephon Watson scored 21 to lead the host Eagles in a Class 3A North region quarterfinal.

Southern-AA 73, Wicomico 67: Will Maynard had 29 points, including 10 in the decisive third quarter, as the host Bulldogs (14-9) came from behind to win a 2A East quarterfinal game.

Southern-AA trailed by 10 at halftime but outscored Wicomico 24-7 in the third to take the lead for good.

Pub Date: 3/03/98

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