Mount St. Joe wins from line

Gaels make 12 of 16 2nd-half free throws

Herbert hits 6 3-pointers, scores 27 in loss

No. 4 Mt. St. Joseph 53 No. 9 McDonogh 51

Boys basketball

January 06, 2007|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,Sun reporter

Mount St. Joseph's struggling offense made only five of 18 shots from the field in the second half, but free-throw shooting and the defense of Dino Gregory saved the Gaels in a 53-51 victory over visiting McDonogh last night.

It was the second straight loss for McDonogh in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference, leaving the Eagles 1-2 in the league.

The No. 4 Gaels (10-3, 3-1 MIAA) made 12 of 16 free throws in the second half, including nine of 12 in the final quarter, to overcome Brandon Herbert's game highs of six three-pointers and 27 points for the No. 9 Eagles (11-3).

Herbert, who McDonogh coach Donta Evans says is "one of the best shooters in the league and is a big-game player," hit his final three-pointer at the buzzer for the final margin.

Junior guard Justin McCoy hit four straight from the line in the final 33 seconds for the Gaels after freshman guard Eric Atkins had given Mount St. Joseph a 49-42 lead with 3:10 remaining. Atkins was fouled on a three-point attempt with the Gaels clinging to a 46-42 lead and made three straight free throws.

"I thought that was a really big play by Atkins to give us a seven-point lead," Mount St. Joseph coach Pat Clatchey said. "We hit enough free throws to win it."

Gregory, the 6-foot-8 Maryland-bound senior, limited the Eagles' high-scoring Joe Yermal to five points.

The 6-6 Yermal, an outstanding shooter from the perimeter, averages 16 points a game and was named Most Valuable Player in a Washington tournament won by the Eagles during the holidays. Yermal scored McDonogh's first five points and didn't score again.

"Coach told me to stay out there on him [Yermal] because he's a real good three-point shooter," said Gregory, who was the only Gael in double figures last night, with 11 points and also seven defensive rebounds and three blocks.

With Gregory outside, 6-10 junior Henry Sims cleaned up inside for the Gaels with a game-high 11 rebounds, eight defensively, and scored six points.

"Their free throws sealed the deal," Herbert said. "We prepared well, but maybe we can get them at our place in a couple weeks."

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