No. 1 Walbrook falls to National Christian

Boys basketball

High Schools

December 12, 2003|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

This wasn't the kind of start Walbrook had been hoping for.

With coach Kelvin Bridges suspended, the No. 1 Warriors dropped their season opener, 69-49, to National Christian Academy of Prince George's County at the Function at the Junction Mixer at Walbrook last night.

Abdul Jalloh, headed to St. Joseph's (Pa.), paced National Christian with a game-high 24 points, and Jessie Sapp scored all 15 of his points in the second half.

Junior swingman Velmar Coleman led Walbrook with 13 points. Edward Tyson added 12.

Bridges, who was suspended for the game by Walbrook's administration, declined to comment on the reason for the suspension.

Assistant Caprizo Coleman guided the Warriors last night. After a close first half, Walbrook played sloppily in the final two quarters as the Eagles built a double-digit margin.

"We played well in the first half, but we started turning the ball over," Caprizo Coleman said. "We've got to protect the ball. It's a long season, but we have to do a better job."

Trailing at halftime, Walbrook scored the first six points of the third quarter for a 30-27 lead, but as quickly as the West Baltimore school gained the advantage, National Christian stole it back.

Jalloh started the rally with a steal and basket, then had a dunk, giving the Eagles a 31-30 lead. His three-point play extended the lead to four.

Aided by nine turnovers by the Warriors, National Christian advanced the lead to 44-34 on a three-pointer by Chris Matthews at the buzzer to end the third quarter.

The Warriors got back to within 45-36 after a basket by Dajuan Davis, but another miscue by Walbrook led to a dunk by Sapp, and two free throws by Jalloh put the Eagles ahead, 49-36.

From the opening tip, both teams pushed the ball up the court and attacked the basket.

The Warriors built a 16-7 advantage on back-to-back three-pointers by Dustin Lawson and Velmar Coleman, and a two-pointer by Coleman.

National Christian pulled to within 16-15 before Lawson scored off a rebound.

The Fort Washington school responded with an 8-0 run, capped by a three-pointer from Matthews. The Eagles held a 27-24 halftime lead.

For the second straight year, Dunbar of Washington handled Mervo, posting a 56-42 win.

Senior center Antwan Lawrence led the Mustangs with 17 points, but Mervo had no answer for Dunbar guard Randy Hampton.

Hampton, headed to Drexel, led all scorers with 32 points.

The 6-foot-3 guard scored eight of his team's 16 points in the second quarter as Dunbar (5-1) turned a 12-12 first-quarter tie into a 28-20 halftime advantage.

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