J.M. Bennett bounces Aberdeen

Eagles can't hold lead in 59-52 loss to Clippers

Class 2A East boys basketball

High Schools

March 07, 2004|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

No. 15 Aberdeen's bid for a spot in the state playoffs fell short last night at Wicomico in the Class 2A East regional final.

The Eagles surrendered a lead early in the fourth quarter and never recovered in a 59-52 loss to defending 2A state champion James M. Bennett.

With the Clippers down four early in the final quarter, Aberdeen's Phillip Brown (18 points) fouled Justin Brim (17) on a three-point try. Brim converted all three foul shots to pull J.M. Bennett within one. It took the lead for good on the next possession after converting off a turnover by the Eagles (18-7).

The Clippers will face South champion Friendly of Prince George's County in the 2A state semifinals at 7 p.m. Friday at Comcast Center in College Park.

Aberdeen coach Richard Hart was not pleased with the call on Brown nor with the officiating in general. The Eagles, who had won 12 of 13 coming in, were whistled for 22 fouls. The Clippers were called for 13. Aberdeen attempted nine free throws. The Clippers attempted 22.

"I don't want to look for excuses because we could have played better and J.M. Bennett is a fine team, but the book speaks for itself," Hart said.

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