Dunbar opens fast, rips Walbrook by 43

Poets' pressure forces 33 Warriors turnovers

Girls basketball

High Schools

February 02, 2002|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

Dunbar's 10th-ranked girls basketball team didn't waste any time last night, running up a big early lead and cruising to a 78-35 victory over Walbrook.

The teams could meet again in the Baltimore City championship game on Feb. 19 because neither has lost a game in its division. In last night's nondivisional game, however, the Warriors had no answer for the pressure defense Dunbar used to get the early jump.

The Warriors (13-5) arrived at Dunbar (15-1) still stinging from Wednesday's 57-51 upset loss to first-year Southside, but they could not bounce back against the two-time Class 2A state champion.

"We just didn't execute," said Walbrook coach Yolanda Jackson. "We made a lot of mistakes, and they were in the bonus in the first quarter. Dunbar played flawless. They played a smart game, and they played as a team."

It took the Poets less than five minutes to get the game under their control. After Walbrook's Renee Jones scored the opening basket, Dunbar took off on a 15-2 run.

The Warriors, who committed 33 turnovers for the game, gave the ball away six times during that Dunbar spurt. The Poets made them pay with four baskets.

Toni Kennedy, who finished with a game-high 19 points, hit a three-pointer to start the run. Bianca Sullivan then scored eight straight points - two off her own steals. Teara Williams scored the next four points, finishing off the run by converting a turnover into a layup with 3:28 still remaining in the first quarter.

"They couldn't handle the pressure, so we just gave them the pressure," said Sullivan, a 5-foot-5 junior guard who scored all of her 13 points in the first half. "We came out with great teamwork. Everybody played together, swung the ball, and we played real good defense."

The Warriors tried to stem the tide, pulling within seven early in the second quarter. Tabatha Timmons nailed a three-pointer to cut the margin to 17-10 with 6:20 to go before the half, but the Poets answered with an 8-2 run to push the lead to 25-12 midway through the half.

The lead just kept growing after that as all but one Poet scored. In the third quarter, Dunbar scored 32 points, shooting 12-for-19 from the field and 7-for-9 from the free-throw line.

"Our team is so balanced this year," Sullivan said. "We can go throughout the whole team, and everybody can play together. We don't have to stick with our starters."

The Warriors struggled with shooting throughout the game, and only LaChon Holley finished in double figures with 11 points.

"We couldn't get anything to fall in the first quarter," Jackson said. "We had took good shots, but they just wouldn't fall."

The Poets, who still have a division game remaining with Southside, were coming off a huge win on Wednesday, a 71-39 romp over Western that avenged Dunbar's loss in last year's city championship game.

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