Sometimes one victory against an arch-rival can set the tone )) for an entire season.
Glenelg (3-0 overall, 2-0 Howard County) certainly hopes that's the case after a suspenseful 46-43 overtime victory at River Hill yesterday.
The Gladiators' defense and 25 points by sophomore power forward Eric Breland were the crucial elements of Glenelg's victory, a payback for last season, when River Hill defeated Glenelg twice.
Glenelg's Curan Oatts held River Hill's sharp-shooting guard, Jay Kreider, to a team-high 11 points.
"This was a program-changing win," Glenelg coach Jeremy Snyder told his team, which was 5-18 last season. "You were down 26-18 at halftime and came back by playing better defense than you've played all year. Now people will have to respect you."
Glenelg not only raised its defense but also cut its turnovers from 13 in the first half to eight in the second half and improved its shooting from 8-for-21 in the first half to 12-for-21 in the second half.
Meanwhile, River Hill (2-2, 1-1) shot 12-for-21 in the first half and made just six turnovers but fell apart in the second half, sinking only seven of 25 shots and making 12 turnovers. The Hawks made one of eight shots in overtime.
Breland carried Glenelg in the first quarter with eight points and six rebounds. In the second quarter. the Hawks began double-teaming him in the post and held him to two points and no rebounds.
But Breland scored eight points in the third quarter to lead Glenelg's comeback. Two of those baskets were pick-and-rolls off nice assists by Brandon Robertson.
Glenelg trailed 33-30 entering the fourth period and Breland scored to make it 33-32. Breland's over-the-shoulder layup with 2: 19 left to play finally put Glenelg ahead, 37-35.
River Hill's John Alascio tied it at 39-all with 28 seconds left. Breland had a chance to end it in regulation but missed an open 6-foot jumper with four seconds left.
"I was a little frustrated going into overtime," Breland said.
He scored the first basket of the four-minute overtime period and sank a free throw for a 42-39 Glenelg lead.
After Kreider scored, Jeff Starcher connected for a 44-41 Glenelg lead. Robertson made a steal for Glenelg, but Oatts missed a layup with 1: 02 left.
Then River Hill missed three straight shots before fouling sophomore Chris Bowen, whose nine rebounds tied Breland for team high. Bowen sank one free throw with 30 seconds left.
Todd Tedrow sank two at the other end, making it 45-43 with eight seconds left.
Pub Date: 12/17/98