Johnson, Aberdeen prove point, 56-43

Defeating Parkside sends Eagles to 1st state tourney

Class 2A East girls basketball

High Schools

March 02, 2002|By Mike Frainie | Mike Frainie,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Aberdeen's Theressa Johnson likes to prove her doubters wrong.

"A lot of people doubted," Johnson said. "I guess they won't doubt us any more."

The Eagles did their best to remove all doubt last night, defeating Salisbury's Parkside, 56-43, in the Class 2A East Regional girls basketball championship.

The victory advances Aberdeen to its first-ever state tournament. The Eagles will play Friday at UMBC in the 2A state semifinals.

Shareice Galloway led Aberdeen with 17 points. Parkside's Kim Davis led all scorers with 28 points.

Aberdeen trailed by as many as nine points in the first quarter. The Eagles, however, rallied to outscore the Rams 29-14 to take command of the game.

"I told them it's a war, and they needed to want it more," said Eagles coach Brandi Barnes. "We are very team-oriented, and they picked each other up."

The Eagles didn't stop Davis, but they did manage to slow her down. Barnes used a number of different defenses, and the constant pressure seemed to wear Davis down.

Parkside cut Aberdeen's lead to 34-33 with 5:17 left in the third quarter.

A combination of zone defenses and aggressive rebounding kept the Rams from getting closer. From that point, Aberdeen went on a 12-3 run to take a 46-36 lead with 5:05 left in the game.

"We just kept fighting," Galloway said. "We've never been this far before, and we knew we had to go after it."

Parkside couldn't capitalize at the free-throw line, converting a 5-for-13 in the fourth quarter.

"I couldn't be happier for the girls," Barnes said. "I played at Joppatowne, and we went [to the state tournament] my sophomore, junior and senior years. I'm glad they'll get to experience that."

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