Threes power Milford Mill into title-game rematch

Millers beat T. Stone, get another shot at DuVal

Girls 3A state semifinals

March 10, 2000|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

Mandakova Clark and Shari Burgess combined for eight three-pointers last night to lead No. 8 Milford Mill to a 75-63 victory over Thomas Stone in a state Class 3A semifinal at UMBC.

The Millers' victory sends them to the title game for the third straight year and into a rematch of last year's final. They will take on defending champion DuVal in the 8 p.m. final tomorrow.

The Tigers, who beat Paint Branch in yesterday's other semifinal, cruised past the Millers in last year's final but only beat the Millers, 54-50, in January at the Mayor's Academy Tournament.

Last night, Clark and Burgess hit back-to-back 20-footers midway through the fourth quarter to give the Millers their first commanding lead of the game, 68-52. The Millers (21-4) had a chance to put the Cougars away early, but they struggled from the free-throw line enabling the Waldorf team to stay in the game until the fourth quarter.

The Millers, who hit just eight of 19 free throws in the first half, took a 25-12 lead early in the second quarter, but they missed five of their next three foul shots. The Cougars (23-3) were hitting their free throws and netted four straight to start a 13-0 run to end the first half with their first lead of the game, 35-34.

The lead wouldn't last long, however, because the Millers opened the second half with a 10-0 spurt for a 44-35 lead. All-Metro guard Clark opened the half with an 18-footer before Candice Jeter and Tamika Rogers added layups. Clark then grabbed two defensive rebounds and fed Jeter and Burgess for layups and an 11-point lead just 1: 39 into the half.

The Cougars got within five a couple times late in the third quarter, the last time on Jewel Clark's layup with 45 seconds left in the third quarter. Burgess ended the quarter with two free throws.

The Millers opened the final quarter with a five-point run, but the Cougars stayed within striking distance until Mandakova Clark and Burgess hit three-pointers within 33 seconds for a 68-52 lead with 3: 44 to go.

Mandakova Clark, who finished with 28 points and five assists, hit six three-pointers -- one shy of the state tournament record. The Rutgers-bound senior has another chance to set a record tomorrow. She needs just three more three-pointers to break the tournament record.

THOMAS STONE -- Clark 15, Blandford 20, Washington 11, Ly.Malone 5, Wightington 4, Makle 4. Totals: 18 21-31 63.

MILFORD MILL -- Clark 28, Smith 2, Burgess 20, Wilkins 5, Adeyemo 7, rogers 5, Jeter 7. Totals: 25 17-33 75. Half: TS 35-34

DuVal 55, Paint Branch 49: The Tigers (23-3), going for their third title in 10 years, got 20 points from Vernesssa Neamo and 10 from Lynnette Clark to beat the Panthers (24-2).

DUVAL -- Neamo 20, Clark 10, Strong 7, Jefferson 6, Onuaku 6, Nwagbo 6. Totals: 26 3-7 55.

PAINT BRANCH -- Golodze 6, Harrington 11, Kantin 2, Coleman 21, Kelly 2, Mwalimu 7. Totals: 17 15-26 49.

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