Oakland Mills earns 2nd trip to UMBC, solves Poolesville 'D' Beale's treys spark Scorps

Long Reach ousted, 54-51

Girls basketball

March 07, 1998|By Rick Belz and Steven Kivinski POOLESVILLE

OXON HILL — POOLESVILLE -- Oakland Mills used its superior size and Jamie Beale's slick ball-handling and three-pointers to win the Class 1A South region championship over Poolesville last night, 51-42.

The Scorpions will be making their second trip to the state final four, having been runners-up on the last trip, in 1991.

"Everything fell into place tonight," Beale said. "Usually, when our guards are on, our forwards are off, or our forwards are on, and our guards are off."

The host northern Montgomery County team made nine of 12 shots in the first quarter, including eight straight and four from 15-foot range.

Overall, though, Poolesville coach Fred Swick said that "defensively, we played well, but Oakland Mills had all the answers."

Oakland Mills trailed by three points at halftime, 28-25, but Beale got hot in the third quarter, hitting three of her four three-point baskets.

"Her three-pointers changed everything," Swick said. "They forced us to spread our zone, and then they got two or three put-backs. They were the biggest team we played all year and had all the pieces -- quickness, height, point guard, shooters."

Oakland Mills (16-9) led 38-35 after three quarters and built that -- lead to 44-37 on three baskets by DoWare Merchant, who subbed for starting center Rayna DuBose (nine points, six rebounds). Scorpions forward Adrienne Butler was outstanding, with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Oakland Mills zone-pressed in the first half but switched to a man-for-man in the second half.

Long Reach burns out

OXON HILL -- Long Reach turned a potential blowout into a bona fide barn-burner in last night's Class 2A South region championship.

After falling behind 23-2 in the first quarter and trailing by 17 with under four minutes remaining, the Lightning finished with a flurry before bowing to the Braves of Prince George's County, 58-55.

Potomac (14-11) advanced to UMBC against Middletown.

"Everyone else is home and we're here, so we have a lot to be proud of," said Long Reach coach Shanya Evans. "In the second quarter we started realizing that we could play with this team."

Long Reach (11-15), winless in 23 games during last year's inaugural season, closed out the game with a 17-2 run. Demetria Hamilton's three-pointer with 15 seconds left cut the lead to five, and Thandi Howell made it a one-possession game when she stole a pass near midcourt and hustled in for an uncontested layup with seven seconds left.

The Lightning managed to stop the clock with a three seconds left and still had a chance after two missed free throws, but LaToya Hines' last-second shot from beyond half-court fell short.

Pub Date: 3/07/98

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