Wilde Lake out-muscles rugged Calvert Board skills help Wildecats to 64-45 semifinal victory

March 05, 1998|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

The sound of bodies thumping against one another -- or against the hardwood floor as players dived for loose balls -- filled Wilde Lake's gym last night.

And when the sound of the thumping stopped, No. 3-ranked Wilde Lake had defeated Calvert, 64-45, to win a rough Class 3A East region semifinal.

The Wildecats (21-2) advanced to Friday's region championship game against another Calvert County team, Northern, which defeated Anne Arundel County's Broadneck last night.

"It was a physical game. It reminded me of the Big 10 Conference," Calvert coach Frank Moore said. "We handled their pressure defense, because they finally took it off, but we couldn't hang with them on rebounds."

Wilde Lake's big front line of Jessie Roy-Harrison and Bridget White, along with nimble, cagey Toni White (15 points, eight rebounds), dominated the boards in the first half. Becka Moody and sophomore Bryanna Herring (13 points, 12 rebounds) gave the Wildecats equally good size and rebounding strength off the bench.

"They were big, tall, strong, wide and very aggressive," Moore said. "They were quick, moved well, passed well, and looked up the floor. We just ran into a buzzsaw."

In the first quarter, however, Calvert (15-9) managed to stay with Wilde Lake and led 11-10 before Herring's inside basket put the Wildecats ahead for good.

Toni White followed that basket with three layups sandwiched around baskets by Calvert's Marie Burgholthaus. Herring made the last basket of the first quarter for a 20-15 Wilde Lake lead.

"We hesitated and didn't push the ball in the first quarter," Wilde Lake coach Kelly Storr said. "They were fast and tough and shook us up in that first quarter. We didn't know anything about them. But they moved the ball well and beat our press. Their red-headed girl [Sara Dullon] was really fast and beat Natashka [Hill] a couple of times down the floor -- and that never happens."

Toni White had a fast start, scoring eight of her game-high 15 points in the first quarter.

"They gave us some competition, but the quickness of our guards and our height did it for us," White said. "We adjusted our press in the second quarter, and it worked better."

Wilde Lake scored the first six points of the second quarter to complete a 10-0 run and pulled ahead 26-15. The Wildecats led 35-24 at halftime.

Pub Date: 3/05/98

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