Barksdale points toward bigger things

At Texas junior college, Wise's nephew opens eyes


December 17, 2003|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

Maurice Barksdale carries two important tags with him that will help open doors to a major college basketball career.

One (The Sun's 2002-03 All-Metro Player of the Year) has already cleared a path this season to Blinn College in Brenham, Texas, and the second (Skip Wise's nephew) helps give Barksdale credibility on the court.

When Blinn coach Steve Spurlin was asked by a friend last May if he could use a point guard who had been the player of the year in Baltimore, he said, "I already have a point guard, but if he's a player of the year, I'll take him."

In regard to the Wise legacy at Dunbar and Clemson, Barksdale said, "My mom wants me to make it on my own name."

In 1974, Wise became the first freshman in the history of the Atlantic Coast Conference to make first-team all-conference.

After two seasons at Calvert Hall, Barksdale, like Wise, also made his mark at Dunbar High. As a senior, he averaged 20.6 points, 7.7 assists and 3.9 rebounds in helping the Poets to the Class 1A state title.

After graduation, however, he was involved in a tragedy. On July 15, he was driving a car that collided with a police cruiser in East Baltimore, resulting in the death of Barksdale's passenger, Dunbar honors graduate Tiffany V. Gant, 18. Police have ruled the accident just that, an accident, according to Baltimore City police spokesman Troy Harris. No charges are going to be filed, Harris said yesterday.

Barksdale is hoping to make Blinn a steppingstone. "I'll stay here one year," said Barksdale, a guard who is second on the team in scoring and assists. "I like the small-town atmosphere (120 miles west of Houston on the way to Austin) because there are no distractions and it's easy to study. But I think sometimes about how I could be playing at a higher level."

The 5-foot-10, 170-pound freshman is averaging 13.7 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game for National JuCo Division I Blinn (10-2, 5-0 Region XIV).

Barksdale had a season-high 27 points, seven assists and five rebounds Wednesday against Lee (Texas) College, the kind of performance that has attracted attention from East Carolina, West Carolina and the University of Washington.

Joynes contributes

Rutgers freshman Byron Joynes (Towson Catholic) has helped the Scarlet Knights to a 5-1 start, averaging 2.8 points and 3.3 rebounds in 15 minutes a game off the bench.

Joynes, 6-9, 280 pounds, has played in five games this season.

As a high school junior at Towson Catholic, Joynes averaged 13.0 points and 15.0 rebounds per game, and was Carmelo Anthony's teammate. Joynes then attended Oak Hill Academy his senior season, shooting 58 percent from the field, averaging 7.6 points, 5.1 rebounds, 2.0 blocks and 15 minutes a game.

Et cetera

Brandeis senior midfielder Julie Golomb (Owings Mills) capped her four-year career with a selection to the CoSIDA Academic All-America College Division women's soccer first team. The College Division consists of NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III and NAIA schools.

Golomb started every game in four seasons for the Judges (15-2-3 this year).

Senior guard Abby Pyzik (Mercy) and freshman forward/center Caroline Wesley (Institute of Notre Dame) are 1-2 in scoring and rebounding for the Lynchburg women's basketball team (2-4, 0-3 Old Dominion Athletic Conference).

Pyzik, 5-7, is first in scoring (13.3 average), second in rebounding (5.0 average) and first in steals (14), has a team-leading 30 assists to 26 turnovers, and has hit seven of 16 three-point field-goal attempts. Wesley, 6-2, is first in rebounding (6.5 average) and second in scoring (10.2 average), leads the team with eight blocks, and is second in steals (12).

Juniata freshman volleyball standout Stephanie Kines (Towson) was a force in her team's drive to the NCAA Division III quarterfinals before a loss to New York University ended the season. Kines finished the season first on the Eagles (38-1) in attack percentage (.404) and second in blocks (72). She had 273 kills and 41 digs in 38 matches.

Sun staff writer Laurie Willis contributed to this article.

Have a Postcard? Contact Bill Free by e-mail at or by phone at 410-833-5349.

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