No. 2 Rams roll into title game

Randallstown 63 Potomac 42

Boys basketball Class 2A

High schools

March 11, 2006|By PAT O'MALLEY | PAT O'MALLEY,SUN REPORTER

College Park -- No. 2 Randallstown smothered Potomac with relentless defensive pressure last night en route to a 63-42 romp in the Class 2A boys basketball semifinals at Comcast Center.

The Rams (25-1) held the Wolverines of Prince George's County to 15-for-65 shooting and will face Wicomico (24-3) in the championship game tonight at 6.

Randallstown junior Lyndon Jones scored a game-high 23 points and called it "the best game I've ever had."

Johnny Higgins had a marvelous all-around game for the Rams with 15 points, 11 rebounds and six assists.

The game was a matchup of state champions from last year. Randallstown won its third state title in Class 3A last season, while Potomac earned its third in 2A.

All three Randallstown titles have come under 12th-year coach Kim Rivers, and the Rams tonight will be aiming for their first repeat title.

Potomac (14-8) missed its first 16 shots, two of its first 24 and was 5-for-35 in the first half.

The Rams were slow to take advantage and led only by 15-5 at the end of the first quarter, but they outscored the Wolverines 20-13 in the second period to take a 35-18 lead at halftime.

Robert Shannon scored 20 points to lead Potomac but was 1-for-8 on three-point attempts. Overall, the Wolverines shot 1-for-22 from long range.

"It can be difficult shooting in a big space like it is at Comcast," Rivers said. "They [Wolverines] didn't shoot well against Atholton [in a 70-59 victory in the regional final], but they penetrated. We knew about their penetration going left and we anticipated quick shots from them, especially in the second half. They never made a significant run."

With Higgins, Jones (three steals), Darrell Bryant (game-high 13 rebounds), Patrick Jefferson and Paul Kirkpatrick applying the heat, the Rams forced 18 turnovers, not to mention a slew of altered shots.

"We got the momentum going and kept it going" Higgins said. "And my teammate Lyndon stepped it up."

Rivers, however, found one negative in the result: The Rams missed half of their foul shots (16-for-32).

"I'm worried about our free-throw shooting going into the championship," he said.

patomalleysports@aol.com

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