S. Carroll sputters, falls to Gw. Park

Cavaliers fall, 64-36, after posting their lowest point total of season

Boys Class 3A semifinals

High School Basketball

March 08, 2002|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

COLLEGE PARK - Eighth-ranked South Carroll survived the loss of its All-Metro point guard, a late-season slump and a nailbiter in the semifinals to make it to yesterday's Class 3A state boys basketball semifinals at Cole Field House.

In the end, however, it was as much the venerable old College Park arena as Prince George's County's Gwynn Park that proved to be the Carroll County team's undoing in a 64-36 loss.

Bothered by an unfamiliar shooting background, the Cavaliers shot 30 percent from the field, including 2-for-14 from three-point range, in posting their lowest point total of the season.

"If you haven't played in something like this, it's like playing out in the middle of a football field," South Carroll coach Jim Carnes said. "Depth perception is tough. We just made no outside shots. I mean, that's been our strength all year, the inside-outside game. But our shooters just didn't put the ball down."

Gwynn Park (24-2), the Washington area's No. 3 team, advanced to tomorrow's state 3A final against No. 1 Douglass, a 105-74 winner over Chopticon in the other semifinal.

With no perimeter attack, second-team All-Metro center Josh Boone, drawing a constant double team, never became an offensive factor. The 6-9 senior managed just 5 points, 16 below his average.

"After we missed a few shots, they just kept clamping down on Boone," Carnes said.

Guard Bryan Lowry, a long-range sharpshooter for South Carroll for most of the season, finished 1-for-10 from the field, as South Carroll made just four shots from 15 feet or longer all game.

"I didn't make a single three the whole time, and that was my strong point the whole season," said Lowry, who has been under the weather in recent days. "I mean, it's frustrating. It's just harder to play here. You're all hyped up before the game. Big crowd. Big stadium."

While the Cavaliers were ice cold, however, the Yellow Jackets, following a shaky first half, shot 59 percent over the final two quarters, using pressure defense to force turnovers, then turning them into easy baskets.

Leading 30-25, Gwynn Park, led by forward Darrick Sesker (22 points) and Boston College signee Louis Hinnant (12), outscored the Cavaliers, 22-4, over the next 11 minutes to build a 52-29 lead.

"We just tried to go in at halftime and make some adjustments," Hinnant said. "I thought our coaches did a very good job preparing us for the second half. We wanted to pressure their guards to make it a little more difficult for them to drive the ball down to Josh."

"We just had to come out and step up our defense. Defense is the name of the game," Gwynn Park coach Steve Matthews said. "We had to make changes and get Josh off the offensive glass, because he was killing us in the first half."

Boone, playing his final high school game, finished with 13 rebounds, including six offensive, and six blocks.

After advancing to the state semifinals for the first time since 1989, however, the Cavaliers weren't taking their accomplishments for granted.

"I'm not hanging my head, I can tell you that," Carnes said. "That's back-to-back 20 wins for our seniors. It's disappointing that we didn't show our best, but we had a great year."

GWYNN PARK - Hinnant 12, Bond 8, Davis 7, Sesker 22, Hawkins 4, Quarles 2, Butler 4, Hyson 3, Farmer 2. Totals: 30 7-12 64.

SOUTH CARROLL - Dahlgren 9, Medlar 8, Boone 5, Lowry 2, Lewis 3, Jones 2, Greene 4, Leyshon 3. Totals. 17 4-8 36. Half: GP, 23-19.

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