For many of South Carroll's games this winter, the team put at least three and sometimes four scorers in double figures, although coach Jim Carnes never knew which ones would play well on a given night.
Last night, the Cavaliers got help up and down the line in putting away visiting Walter Johnson, 73-60, in the quarterfinals of the Class 3A West Region.
The win, the Cavaliers' 14th in 24 starts, keeps them at home for a semifinal tomorrow night against Kennedy, a one-point winner over Linganore.
Walter Johnson (12-11) came in with the same up-tempo philosophy as used by South Carroll, but the difference was the man in the middle.
Sam McGrane, South Carroll's 6-foot-8 senior center, did much damage inside, finishing with 18 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks.
McGrane got help from reserves Derek Boswell (12 points) and John Luster (tough defense), plus David Keefer (10 points, three assists) and Kevin Damiano (13 points).
The game was a series of runs.
Walter Johnson, down 12-4 in the opening minutes, came back to tie, fell down by 12, then whittled that margin to 38-34 over the last four minutes of the second quarter.
After a three-pointer by Kevin Brant reduced the gap to one at the start of the third period, South Carroll took charge.
The back-breakers turned out to be a pair of three-point shots by Damiano. Ben Carr's only basket got the home side going, and Adam Hynes saved a ball headed for the end zone. Damiano grabbed it and promptly converted.
Jeremy Butler, one of five senior starters for Walter Johnson, and the tallest at 6-4, missed a shot underneath at the other end, and Damiano quickly put the finish on a fast break.
Before coach Bill Morris could get a timeout, Keefer gave his defender a look-away passes right to Hynes, who hit the open shot for 48-37 with 5: 45 remaining in the quarter.
Morris, excused for the night at 6: 10 of the last quarter after a pair of rapid-fire technicals (he wondered out loud why Luster had not been called for a foul after the defender appeared to whack David Morrison on the arms as he went for a layup), acknowledged later that he should have called a timeout immediately after the three-pointers.
"I was just watching him," he said of Damiano's long shots. "He came up big. Those were very big shots." Overall, he said, "We both used the same style. The difference was the big guy."
Hynes, a 6-3 senior forward who has scored in double figures his past 10 games, said: "Our legs took their legs out of the game. We're used to this bigger floor, and I think we wore them down. We subbed more frequently, too."
Pub Date: 3/02/99