Perry Hall's objective was to disrupt Dulaney with a full-court press, and that's exactly what happened in a Class 4A North Section I semifinal Tuesday night. After taking an 11-8 first-quarter lead, Dulaney struggled to get good shots and to keep possession.
Second-seeded Perry Hall (21-2) turned up the pressure on a 17-0 run in the second quarter to build a 12-point lead on the way to a 58-37 victory over the third-seeded Lions at Perry Hall.
Dulaney (13-9) committed 25 turnovers and shot 29 percent from the field.
"Our press is one of those bread-and-butter type of defenses," Perry Hall coach Mandy Fischer said. "We get turnovers and steals. That gives a lot of confidence and creates offense."
Perry Hall (21-2) will play top-seeded and host Catonsville Thursday night.
Fischer hopes to get another strong performance from sophomore point guard Shawnika McCallum, who finished with a season-high 20 points and seven assists.
"She has really matured as a person and player from last year," Fischer said. "She made second-team all-county. She is really a leader on the court."
MaCallum got help from her teammates Tuesday as the Gators controlled tempo and the boards.
Perry Hall received solid performances from forwards Makenzie Piti (10 rebounds, 8 points) and Brittany Gilliam (11 rebounds) and center Lea Green (11 points, 12 rebounds, 4 steals).
"We let them have second-, third-, fourth- and fifth-chance opportunties on the boards," Dulaney coach Jess Szymanski said. "Offensively, we didn't play aggressively . Overall, I just felt it was one of those days where one stepped up."
Dulaney trailed 4-2 early, but closed the first quarter on a 9-4 run.
But the second quarter belonged to Perry Hall. The Gators started the period on a 17-0 run as Dulaney went scoreless for more than seven minutes.
The Lions scored only two points in the quarter and went 1-for-9 from the field.
"When things went wrong, it was like a domino effect," Szymanski said.
Armani Graves led Dulaney with 14 points and four rebounds. Nicole Sharpe had 11 points and seven rebounds off the bench.
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