Woodlawn tops Catonsville, gains berth in Balto. Co. final

Girls basketball

February 19, 2004|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Woodlawn locked up a spot in the Baltimore County championship game by using well-timed streaks to outlast stubborn host Catonsville last night.

The Warriors scored the game's first nine points and 13 in a row midway through the game to take command. But No. 4 Woodlawn needed help from Tiara Wildy and Candice Britton to get the game's final 10 points and seal a 53-38 victory over No. 19 Catonsville in a Baltimore County Class 4A-3A game.

Woodlawn (19-3, 11-0) has won 15 straight games and will represent the 4A-3A division in the county title game Tuesday against the 2A-1A winner. The opponent and site will be determined in the next few days. Woodlawn won the county title last year before eventually losing to Montgomery County's Churchill in the Class 4A state final.

Wildy tied teammate Brittney Taylor with a game-high 13 points, scoring nine on three consecutive three-point shots in the fourth quarter.

Catonsville (15-6, 8-2) had cut the Woodlawn lead to 43-38 with 3:11 left before Wildy made two of her threes and Britton (eight points) added a three-point play and later a free throw for the final 10 points. Twelve of the Warriors' 13 fourth-quarter points came on three-point shots or three-point plays.

"We just kept our composure," Wildy said. "They made a run, and we needed to make a run back, and [that's] what we did."

The streaks left Woodlawn coach DeWayne Burroughs scratching his head because the Warriors don't often play that way. But he liked how Woodlawn handled Catonsville's repeated runs.

"They stepped up to the challenge," Burroughs said. "We came out a little slow in the second half but then picked up the defensive intensity."

Woodlawn's defense caused the Comets many problems. Burroughs had his team use a variety of presses and traps that slowed Catonsville.

The defensive pressure caused the Comets to commit 24 turnovers and, despite getting strong games from Janay Johnson (11 points) and Sandy Wasserbach (10 points), Catonsville had constant trouble establishing its offense.

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