Kevin Curtin was feeling good about standing on the free-throw line. Andrew Williamson was happy just to be in the game.
Curtin, a 59 percent foul shooter, made all 13 of his fourth-quarter attempts en route to a season-high 24 points and Williamson scored his first points of the season with two baskets in a key final-quarter run to lift host Glenelg past Atholton, 74-61, in a Howard County game last night.
vTC Also getting 13 points from Earl Frazier and 10 from James McKenney, Glenelg (10-5 overall) stayed in the thick of the county race with a 4-3 record, one game out of first place. Despite 19 points from D.J. Chiles, Atholton (10-5, 4-3) dropped from a four-way first-place tie with its third straight loss.
"I told the players at 3-3 we were out of it if we lost," said Gladiators coach Klaude Krannebitter of his team's second consecutive victory. "It would be virtually impossible to do anything in the county."
Curtin, who raised his scoring average one point to 9.5, said the Gladiators' 58 percent foul shooting entering last night led Krannebitter to spend 30 to 40 minutes each practice on free throws. The extra work paid off as Glenelg, which lost to Atholton by 20 points on Jan. 7, recorded its final 17 points on perfect free-throw shooting.
"Lately, we've been really struggling from the foul line, but I did real well out there tonight," said Curtin, a a 5-foot-11 senior small forward who swished all but one of his fourth-quarter tries. "I've really been concentrating on fundamentals.
"We really put it away in the fourth quarter. Everybody was hustling. I just [try to be] a leader, getting everybody pumped up, telling everyone where to be."
Atholton never led after scoring the game's first basket, though the Raiders pulled even twice in the third period.
Glenelg was ahead, 48-47 in the final quarter when Williamson's drive with 6:17 left started a 14-3 run in which he made a three-pointer from the top of the key and Curtin made five free throws.
Having extended its lead to 62-50 with 2:22 to play, the Gladiators never let the Raiders narrow the margin to single digits again.
"It was the first time I scored all year. I haven't been in their much," said Williamson, a junior point guard. "Once I got my first shot off, I got more confidence, so I tried the second. Lately we've been in a lot of tight games and I haven't been in there much.
Atholton was hampered by the absence of its top three guards with ankle injuries: Brian Benden and Tyrone Allmond at the point and Matt Treese on the wing.
Atholton made 21 turnovers to Glenelg's 10.