Centennial boys basketball coach Chad Hollwedel learned plenty about his team over two days at the J.T. Bogle Invitational in Glen Burnie.
In a 66-45 win over North County on Thursday and a 73-59 loss to Thomas Stone on Friday afternoon, the Eagles smoothy and effectively changed defenses, sharpened their offensive sets and received different contributions from a variety of players who will be at the forefront of their future success.
“The tournament helped us get better,” Hollwedel said on Friday. “There was a stretch today where it got away from us a little bit, but other than that, it’s a close game the whole way.”
The stretch Hollwedel was referring to came at the start of the third quarter, when Thomas Stone went on a 17-4 run that turned a three-possession game into a 20-plus point lead in about four minutes. Centennial (4-3) eventually returned to its identify of sound defense and disciplined offense but dug itself too deep of a hole to climb out of.
Leading the Eagles on Friday were all-tournament players Ryan Hollwedel (12 points) and Joey Sedlacko (11 points) as well as Stafford Smith and Matt Schickner, who combined for 20 points. Defensively, they executed their game plan of limiting all-tournament guard Kevin Skidmore (eight points) but fell victim to the Cougars’ offensive versatility. Tournament MVP Gary Grant led all scorers with 21 points, while Shawn Barclay added 15 points and Leonardo Wilson chipped in nine points.
“We knew that they were going to be disciplined on defense and that they were going to take their time on offense, and they were going to make us work hard on the offensive end,” Thomas Stone Dale Lamberth said. “They’re a hard-working group.”
Centennial’s half-court attack was firing on all cylinders in the first quarter. When the Eagles took care of the ball — they had five turnovers in the opening eight minutes — they earned open perimeter shots and easy layups via drives and backdoors. It’s what helped them overcome their defensive rebounding woes and enter the second quarter down just 19-18.
Thomas Stone continued to offensive rebound at a high rate before halftime but were not turning over Centennial as much. Instead, the Eagles were missing point-blank layups, free throws and other shots from in close. Their 10-point second quarter ensured the Cougars would enter halftime with a sizable advantage.
“They hit their shots at a higher percentage than we did when it was all said and done,” Hollwedel said.
The lead only grew from there, as Thomas Stone ran off 17 points to the Eagles’ four by the halfway point of the third quarter. In Hollwedel’s mind, the poor stretch stemmed mostly from the Cougars taking his team out of its style of play. The Eagles eventually regrouped, though it occurred too late. A 21-point deficit proved too much to come back from.
Despite Centennial’s defeat, Hollwedel was peased with his group’s overall performance over the past two days. The Eagles, who have a 3-1 county record, will return to league play next week, where Lamberth believes they have the potential to elongate their early-season success.
“They’re talented," Lamberth said. “[Hollwedel] is a great player; he’s going to be tough. And they had a few role players that came in and did their job perfectly, so I think if they stay with that, they should be OK in the playoffs.”
Thomas Stone — 73, Centennial (4-3) – 59
C — Hollwedel 12, Sedlacko 11, Smith 11, Schickner 9, Huang 5, Kefyalew 3, Merkey 3, Bonner 3, Benavides 1.
Halftime: 36-28, Thomas Stone
Long Reach, Glen Burnie game called due to floor conditions
With host Glen Burnie and Long Reach boys basketball tied at 34 with three minutes to play in the third quarter on Friday night, coaches and referees agreed to call the game due to poor floor conditions.
The Gophers and Lightning will be co-champions of the J.T. Bogle Invitational’s White Division, but the game will officially go down as a no contest.
“It was a good game,” Glen Burnie coach Mike Rudd said. “It was a shame it had to end this way. It’s not supposed to be 58 degrees on Dec. 28, and maybe fans could have helped it— we’ll have to prepare for that next time. I heard people were disappointed and we’re disappointed. But what can you do? You’ve got to put the kids’ safety first.”
Since holiday tournament games do not affect the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association (MPSSAA) standings, Rudd and Long Reach coach Andrew Lazzor, who was an assistant coach under Rudd for five years, decided it was best to stop the back-and-forth affair. Players on both teams were slipping throughout the game, putting them at a competitive disadvantage and increasing the risk for injury.
“I’d love to win the championship,” Lazzor said, “but not at the expense of the players.”
Around the league:
Oakland Mills (7-2) — 64, CB West (Pa.) — 54
Oakland Mills carried the momentum from a blowout win over rival Hammond last week into its holiday tournament on Thursday and Friday.
The Scorpions’ title run began with an 80-44 rout of Francis Scott Key and concluded with a 10-point victory over CB West of Pennsylvania in the championship. Daeshawn was the big scorer with 23 points.
OM — Eaton 23, Ke’von Simpson 11, Eiland II 8, Hopkins 6, Evans 5, Gaymon 4, Parks 4, Riggs 2, Kemari Simpson 1.
Halftime: 25-22, OM
Glenelg Country (9-4) — 61, Parkdale — 34
Glenelg Country used another dominant defensive effort to secure its second straight blowout win at the James Chapman Holiday Tournament at North Point on Friday.
The Dragons allowed 13 points before intermission and held a 48-18 lead entering the fourth quarter. It marked the second straight game they gave up less than 35 points.
GCS — Chase Paar 14, Cole Paar 12, Brathwaite 9, Charles 9, Yoka-Bratasz 8, Swartz 4, Claud 2, Sween 2, Ejindu 1, Robinson 1.
Hammond (6-1) — 53, Kent County — 47
Hammond bounced back from last week’s lopsided loss to Oakland Mills with a close win against Kent County on Friday at the Governor's Challenge holiday tournament in Salisbury.
As they’ve done all year, senior guard Jaylen Wiggins (22 points) and Micah Henry (19 points) led the way for a Hammond team that turned in another promising defensive effort. Holding a slim lead, the Golden Bears clinched the win by outscoring Kent County, 14-11, over the final eight minutes.
They’ll return to the court Saturday afternoon for a showdown with Winston Churchill.
Ha — Wiggins 22, Henry 19, Asa 4, Allen 3, Aodu 3, Cam Miller 2.
Halftime: 29-27, Ha
Atholton (4-1) — 69, Wellsville (NY) — 31
Atholton did not have any trouble with Wellsville of New York at the Josh Palmer Holiday Classic on Friday afternoon.
Brothers Justin and Jordan Oates combined for 19 points as Atholton jumped out to a 22-point lead before halftime and cruised from there. Five other players scored at least six points for the Raiders, who will play Newfield (NY) on Saturday morning.
A — Justin Oates 10, Brown 9, Jordan Oates 9, Jackson 8, Parkins 7, Gaither 6, Murray 6, Robinson 5, Marshall 3, Mitchell 3, Briken 2, Miller 1.
Halftime: 31-9, A
Marriotts Ridge (5-3) — 65, Century — 54
For the second straight year, Marriotts Ridge won both of its games at the Liberty holiday tournament.
After a 57-51 win over Westminster on Thursday afternoon, the Mustangs turned around and defeated Century, 65-54, on Friday. Senior forward Brandon Held was named to the all-tournament team after scoring a team-high 17 points. Helping shoulder the scoring production was Cam Brown, Amari Little and Cam Heard, who combined to score 34 points.
MR — Held 17, Cam Brown 13, Little 12, Heard 9, Miller 5, Lee 3, Davis 2, Olsufka 2, Page 2.
Mt. Hebron (5-3) — 80, South Carroll — 63
Mt. Hebron responded to Thursday’s overtime loss to Liberty by cruising to a victory at the Liberty holiday tournament on Friday. Odell Dickerson poured in 25 points in the Vikings’ 80-63 win over South Carroll, while Brandon Prox scored 15 points and Ryan Kinloch added 13 points.
MH — Dickerson 25, Prox 15, Kinloch 13, Jackson 8, Bates 5, Coleman 4, Crump 3, Lewis 3, Ichrist 2, Millen 2.
Halftime: 37-30, MH
Glenelg (3-5) — 60, La Plata — 59
Glenelg returned to the win column Friday with a narrow victory on Day 2 of the Meade Holiday Classic.
The Gladiators secured the win thanks to huge nights from Ethan Chappell (career-high 17 points) and sophomore Max Pearcy, who added 16 points in just his second varsity game.
G — Chappell 17, Pearcy 16, Dick 10, Curtis 6, Trawick 6, Onwumbiko 4, Soltis 3.
Halftime: 60-59, G
Pallotti — 78, Wilde Lake (6-1) — 74
After three weeks, there are no more undefeated Howard County teams.
Wilde Lake, which entered Friday’s game with six wins in as many tries, could not overcome an eight-point halftime deficit in an eventual four-point to Pallotti. Marc Marshall, Trea Keys and Emmanuel Wright all scored in double figures for the Wildecats.
WL — Chamblee 15, Marshall 14, Keys 13, Wright 12, Boampong 10, Zimmerman 4, Woods-Gresham 2, Burris 4.
Halftime: 39-31, Pallotti
Richard Montgomery — 50, River Hill (4-4) — 44
River Hill’s championship bid fell short at the Paint Branch Holiday Tournament on Friday.
A day after defeating Sherwood by 30 points, the Hawks could not find a consistent offensive rhythm in a 50-44 loss to Richard Montgomery. Brothers Ryan and Nick Marshall stilled combined for 28 points — and both players were named to the all-tournament team — but their contributions were enough to lift the Hawks to a holiday tournament title.
RH — Ryan Marshall 16, Nick Marshall 12, Okojie 10, James 3, Graves 2.