Aberdeen has fun at expense of Wright

Eagles break open close game for 57-36 win

Girls basketball

High School

January 04, 2002|By Kevin Eck | Kevin Eck,SUN STAFF

Aberdeen girls basketball coach Brandi Barnes preaches to her players that she wants them to play with intensity, but also to have fun.

Yesterday, the Eagles did both, and their good time on this occasion came at the expense of two-time defending Harford County champion C. Milton Wright.

Aberdeen guards Theresa Johnson and Shareice Galloway scored 14 and 13 points, respectively, as the Eagles broke open a close game in the third quarter en route to a 57-36 victory over the host Mustangs.

"Having fun is a big part," said Barnes, who flashed a smile herself a few times during her team's win. "It's a game. You can be intense and you can work hard, but you have to have fun."

The upstart Eagles have certainly been having their share since Barnes took over as coach two weeks ago. Aberdeen (5-3) improved to 3-0 in the county with the victory, and already has defeated two perennial county powers - North Harford and the Mustangs. The Eagles were coming off a respectable 1-2 finish in the highly competitive Forestville Tournament.

"The Christmas Tournament definitely built their confidence," Barnes said. "They played against some quality teams and they saw how they have to play if they want to make it. I think that tournament carried over into this game, and this is just going to build more confidence and momentum for our team."

There wasn't quite as much joviality on the C. Milton Wright side. Returning just two starters from last season's team that went 17-5 overall and 14-0 in the county, the Mustangs fell to 2-6 and have two losses in three county contests.

Despite trailing by just 25-21 at halftime, C. Milton Wright coach John Harvey berated the officials before going into the locker room at the half. The Mustangs had been called for 11 fouls to Aberdeen's four at that point. Overall, the Eagles shot 33 free throws (converting 21) to C. Milton Wright's 17 (it made eight).

"You have to give Aberdeen credit because they played a good game, and we didn't finish some shots," Harvey said, "but I thought the officiating was pathetic. And I think anybody that saw it would agree. That's all I'm going to say."

Whether or not the officiating was a factor, the Mustangs never got into a rhythm on offense and they had trouble keeping up with the quicker Eagles.

Aberdeen seized control in the third quarter, outscoring C. Milton Wright, 19-6, with Johnson scoring 10. The Mustangs converted just two of 16 field-goal attempts in the period and committed eight turnovers.

Things didn't get much better for them in the fourth quarter, as the Eagles opened with a 7-2 spurt to take a 51-29 lead with 5:13 remaining. Aberdeen led by at least 17 the rest of the way.

Megan Ellzy scored 11 to lead C. Milton Wright.

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