Good shooters, bad night. That was the game in Annapolis last night.
Fourth-ranked Annapolis (3-0) took a hard-earned 56-48 victory over No. 10 McDonogh (2-2) in a game that didn't live up to expectations. It was a match-up of two normally sharp-shooting teams with a host of outstanding perimeter and inside scorers.
Instead, each team played outstanding defense and each shot only 36 percent from the floor. The visiting Eagles, who put in only 18 of 50 shots from the floor, succeeded in getting the normally up-tempo Panthers into a half-court game, and the latter sank only 17 of 47.
Sophomore Marcus Neal had a game-high 17 points, including three of the victors' seven three-pointers. Leading scorer Thomas Hawkins had 10 points, thanks to four free throws in the last 23 seconds.
McDonogh also had two players in double digits with junior David Lunn scoring 15 and senior Owen Daly 14.
"We played very good half-court defense and drove them nuts," said McDonogh coach Matt MacMullan. "We controlled the tempo like we wanted to against a team averaging over 90 points a game. We just didn't play quite as smart as we needed to at the end of quarters, and that hurt us a little bit."
Annapolis had blown out two Baltimore teams earlier in the week -- defending Class 1A state champion Forest Park, 91-70, and Patterson, 98-63. Last night's victory was career win No. 440 for coach John Brady (440-88), in his 22nd season at Annapolis.
The Eagles frustrated the Panthers early by using disciplined passing and making it a half-court game. The 6-foot-4 Lunn's defense on Hawkins, a 6-3 junior, kept McDonogh in the game.
Hawkins, the returning Anne Arundel County player of the year and a Street & Smith honorable mention All-American, was limited to four points in the first half.
The Panthers took a 27-24 lead at the break on Joe Feldmann's three-pointer with a couple seconds left. The basket was Feldmann's only one of the game.
Lunn was all over Hawkins in the third period, keeping the talented Panther from penetrating and creating. Hawkins did not score again until he took a feed from Kyron Belt and tossed in a short jumper for a 44-37 lead early in the final period.
Hitting four straight at the line in the final seconds, Hawkins got to double digits.
"David is a great defensive player, and we thought that he was quicker than [Hawkins]," said MacMullan.
"He [Lunn] has long arms, and we thought he could bother his shot on the perimeter and still not let the kid penetrate. That was one of our goals to stop him, and David did a great job."
With Hawkins not a factor, Neal stepped up to score 12 of his points in the second half. It doesn't get any easier for the Eagles, who face a national top-20 team, Kensington's Newport School, at 6: 30 tonight in the Towson Catholic Mixer at Goucher College.
Pub Date: 12/12/98