Confident and established. Young and building.
Those were the contrasts yesterday as a deep, senior-oriented Meade team, ranked fifth in the metro area, handed up-and-coming Old Mill a 63-32 lesson in Millersville.
Sophomore forward Nicole Dailey scored 15 and senior guard Angie Creek added 14 to lead nine Mustangs in the scoring column.
"We got production from every kid on the team and that's important," said Meade coach Phil Popielski, whose Mustangs prepare for a tough week coming up with Severna Park on Tuesday and Arundel next Friday.
There was a stretch late in the first quarter when Old Mill coach Craig White had three freshmen, a sophomore and a junior on the floor at the same time.
That's an indication of just how young the Patriots -- with four freshmen and three sophomores on the vasity roster -- are and the problems a quality team like Meade can present.
The loss was the first for the Patriots in five county games as they dropped to 6-4 overall.
"The only way you get quality game experience is playing good teams like Meade," said White. "When we go up against a good solid team, our inexperience shows up. We enjoy playing teams like Meade because it shows us how hard we have to work in practice and the things we need to work on to get better."
The Mustangs' speed in the backcourt and size up front was simply overwhelming last night.
Creek, a first-team All-Metro player last season, scored eight of her 14 in the first quarter to help get the Mustangs out to an early lead that would extend into a comfortable 30-12 halftime margin.
And while White's attention is focused on getting his young players court experience, Popielski's primary concern -- or luxury -- is getting playing time for a team that goes plenty deep.
"It's sometimes tough to keep everyone happy," said Popielski.
White was also able to find plenty of good things despite the lopsided loss, starting with his Patriots' endless work ethic.
With three minutes left and the Patriots down 59-26, senior Jameelah Miller, just inserted into the game, went diving to the floor for a loose ball.
"The kids are working hard and having fun," said White. "There were positives all over the place. Our goal is to continue to get better and be competitive every game."
Pub Date: 1/13/99