Hot Western quickly leaves Mervo behind Doves, now with 22 wins in row, take region crown

Girls basketball

March 07, 1998|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

No. 6-ranked Western rolled over Mervo, 70-41, to win the Class 4A North region championship last night at Poly.

Junior guard Latia Few scored 14 points to lead Western (25-2), and Delena Deshields added 13. Tobie Ashley led Mervo (15-5) with 18 points. Renata White had 12.

The Doves, who will play Thursday in a state semifinal, won the state Class 4A championship in 1994 and 1995 and were runners-up in 1993.

Their latest trip to the UMBC Field House will be the first for new coach Artie Ulrich, who replaced longtime coach Breezy Bishop this season. Bishop left to become an assistant at North Carolina State.

Ulrich inherited a team that returned 10 of 12 players from last year's state Class 4A semifinalists. The big question was how long it would take before the Doves and Ulrich become comfortable.

Riding a 22-game winning streak, Western has adjusted and possesses the talent and depth that has made it one of the area's most dominant programs over the past decade.

"It didn't take us long, but he's different from Ms. Bishop," said Few, 5-foot-5. "He had a lot of confidence in us all season."

The Doves defeated the Mustangs, 76-50, earlier in a game in which Mervo stayed close in the opening half. Yesterday, the Mustangs' starting four underclassmen, three of them freshmen, fought uphill all the way.

Within the first four minutes, Western had a 16-3 advantage, running off 12 straight points, including two three-pointers by Few.

The Mustangs got within 18-10 later in the quarter on a steal and layup by White, but Few's third three-pointer of the quarter and a basket by Delena DeShields secured a 23-13 lead after the first quarter.

The Doves kept on rolling in the second quarter, scoring the first 14 points to build a 37-13 lead. Western led 43-17 at halftime.

Pub Date: 3/07/98

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.