No. 5 St. Frances keeps Calvert Hall at bay, 60-49

Boys basketball

January 08, 2001|By Mike Frainie | Mike Frainie,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

St. Frances has made its living the past few years on working the ball inside. But an injury to starting forward Jamal Jacobs three minutes into yesterday's game forced the Panthers to go to their plan B.

No problem. Fifth-ranked St. Frances (10-2, 3-0) used a stifling first-half defense and some timely second-half free throws to defeat visiting No. 12 Calvert Hall, 60-49, in a Baltimore Catholic League game at the University of Baltimore.

Erick Ross and Derrick Brooks led the Panthers with 13 points apiece. Calvert Hall's Dwayne Birden led all scorers with 15.

The Panthers used their quickness and a 1-3-1 zone to go on a 22-9 second-quarter run that blew the game open. Demetrick Walker led the Panthers with 10 points during that run.

"We put in a smaller lineup, and it kind of took them out of their game," said St. Frances coach William Wells. "We tried to make them shoot from outside the perimeter, and that's what helped us get the lead."

That, and some timely turnovers in the backcourt led to some fast-break points for the Panthers.

After the half, the Cardinals (9-3, 0-1) came out with renewed enthusiasm, and chipped away at the Panthers' lead, cutting it to 43-36 with 6:53 left in the game.

From there, the Panthers went on an 8-2 run to make it 51-38. They were never threatened after that.

"We had a big lead early, and we barely held on to win," Wells said. "Everything [Calvert Hall] did, I told them to expect. We had practiced breaking the press and playing against pressure, but we took some bad shots and they capitalized."

Calvert Hall coach Mark Amattucci was pleased with his team's effort in the second half, but not the final result.

"We did a bad job with the zone in the first half, but we made some adjustments at halftime and they paid off," he said. "We need to get some perimeter game from some people to get better."

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