No. 10 Annapolis avenges loss to No. 4 Arundel, wins, 92-76

Panthers show no rust from nine-day layoff because of snow

February 14, 2010|By By Glenn Graham

When Annapolis senior forward Delmore Howard put in a smooth baseline turnaround on the opening possession of Saturday's game at No. 4 Arundel, it was as if the No. 10 Panthers had picked up right where they left off the last time they were on the court - a comfortable win over North County on Feb. 4.

Rust from the snow break? Not a chance for the Panthers.

Showing no ill effect from the nine days off, the Panthers did Saturday what they have done all season - got up and down the floor, used their team depth and hit big baskets again and again. The Wildcats simply couldn't keep up.

Despite missing the entire second quarter with foul trouble, Howard finished with a team-high 22 points, Warren Holliday added 19 and two other Panthers reached double figures as they handled Arundel, 92-76, to avenge their only loss of the season.

Annapolis improves to 16-1 overall and 11-1 in Anne Arundel, while the Wildcats fall to 16-2 and are also 11-1 in league play.

"We wanted this game ever since we lost to them a couple weeks back," Howard said. "So we needed to come out with a lot of intensity, and that's what we did. That layoff gave us a little break. We got some gyms around town, so we shot some while we weren't at school, and then everybody came back fresh."

Enjoying a 45-41 halftime lead despite having Howard on the bench for the majority of the first half, the Panthers made a decisive 10-1 run to start the third quarter - Howard accounting for seven of the points - to build a 55-42 lead that would hold.

The Wildcats tried to rally late, getting a 3-pointer from David Nicholson to cut the Annapolis lead to 80-71, but Delonte Joyce hit four straight free throws to end any doubt.

Troy Reid finished with 14 points and Joyce added 12 for the Panthers, who hit 25 of 33 free throws.

Arundel coach Jeff Starr said the poor start to the third quarter and the Panthers' ability to answer baskets proved to be the difference. Senior guard R.J. Harris led the Wildcats with 24 points, while Brandon Belt added 14.

"Our offensive rhythm may have been a little off. Usually, we're able to make runs and stop opponents consecutive times, but they were making a lot of shots. It seemed like every time we made a run, it was only like a four- or five-point run instead of a bigger run we're used to doing," Starr said.

AN-Howard 22, Holliday 19, Reid 14, Joyce 12, Watson 9, Jones 6, Wright 5, James 5. Totals 32 25-33 92.

AR-Harris 24, Belt 14, Conley 10, Tullis 10, Nicholson 6, Washington 5, Lynch 5, Lester 2. Totals 29 10-20 76.

Half: An, 45-41.

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