Glenelg loses at foul line, 46-40

Middletown goes 9-for-9 in last quarter

Gladiators get just 2 tries all game

Class 2A West girls basketball

High Schools

March 07, 2003|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Two years ago a young Glenelg team won a state Class 1A title.

With many of those girls now seniors, however, the Gladiators faltered last night at home in their bid to win a Class 2A state championship by losing to Middletown of Frederick County in the West region semifinals, 46-40.

Glenelg's failure to get to the foul line was crucial. Middletown won it by converting 13 of 17 free throws, including 9-for-9 in the fourth quarter. Glenelg was 0-for-2 at the line for the game.

"You have to play well and have luck," said Glenelg coach Ciaran Lesikar. "We were missing the luck tonight."

Glenelg (19-4) expected to benefit from a height advantage over Middletown (21-3), but 6-foot senior forward Ali Biggs got into early foul trouble.

Cheyenne Davidson, a 6-2 senior center, scored Glenelg's first six points and dominated early. But after Middletown made adjustments and doubled-down on her, Davidson's teammates did not find the passing lanes and get open for shots often enough.

"The refs allowed a lot of rough play inside, which wasn't a style that worked to our advantage," Lesikar said. "I thought we'd match up better, but they [Middletown] were physically strong. We're a finesse team, and I didn't anticipate the physicality of the game."

The game couldn't have been much closer. Middletown led 21-20 at halftime and 31-30 after three quarters, and neither team led by more than four points until Middletown went on a 10-point run to take a 38-30 lead early in the fourth quarter.

Middletown point guard Allie Shannon (game-high 14 points) made a long three-pointer at the buzzer to end the third quarter. She also assisted on the Knights' next two baskets.

Amber Holian also got to Glenelg, scoring 13 points. Shannon and Jill Martin each went 4-for-4 at the foul line in the fourth quarter.

Back-to-back three-pointers by Chrissy Starcher and Davidson broke Middletown's run and cut the lead to 38-36 with 2:15 to play.

Two free throws by Shannon made it 42-38 with 48 seconds to play. The teams then each made two straight turnovers, as Middletown struggled against Glenelg's full-court press. Starcher's layup with 19 seconds left made it 42-40. But Martin hit four straight free throws.

"It was too little, too late. It's tough losing with so many seniors," Lesikar said. "But losing only two [Howard County] games this season was impressive. And beating River Hill was a big win. We had a lot of injuries and illnesses. But we were definitely hoping to make the final four this season."

Starcher led Glenelg with 13 points. Davidson and Jess Burt each had eight points.

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