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Wilde Lake surges past Mount Hebron, 51-46

For Wilde Lake, the Mount Hebron gym has always been a tough place to play.

"The lights are dim and they have all these championship banners hanging up," said Wilde Lake coach Phil Chenier, who also played for the Wildecats during his high school years. "I never remember playing well here."

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Wilde Lake overcame the intimidating atmosphere to defeat the Vikings yesterday, 51-46. The victory avenged three losses last season to Mount Hebron, including a playoff loss.

"We definitely wanted revenge," said Brandon Graham, whose 16 points led all scorers. "We worked as a team, played hard on defense and were quicker than they were."

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Wilde Lake (8-3 overall, 6-3 Howard County league) won it simply by shooting better than defending county champion Mount Hebron (6-5, 5-4). The Wildecats shot 45 percent (21-for-46); the Vikings finished at 29 percent (18-for-62).

Each team had 11 turnovers. Wilde Lake had a 30-29 edge in rebounding.

The Wildecats were effective attacking the baseline against Mount Heron's man-to-man defense. Wilde Lake scored seven baskets from the baseline.

It also converted twice off steals while Mount Hebron missed both its layups off steals.

Wilde Lake also made four put-backs, and the Vikings failed repeatedly at put-backs.

"Wilde Lake is a great team, well-coached and disciplined that is going to be in the hunt for the county title," Vikings coach Mike Linsenmeyer said. "We've improved a lot and I'm totally proud of my team. The kids showed a lot of heart. We've just had trouble with our shooting all season."

The Vikings suffered an 88-60 thrashing by River Hill on Monday, and Linsenmeyer was pleased his team recovered and was ready to play yesterday.

Adam Maddock (14 points, 10 rebounds), Kevin Cooke (seven points, six rebounds) and Eric Wolven (12 points) led the Vikings.

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Graham, Brandon Young (12 points, seven rebounds) and Kevin Showe 12 points, seven rebounds) led the Wildecats.

Graham's three-point play late in the fourth quarter stymied a Vikings' rally. And his steal and layup put the Wildecats ahead 49-40.

Wolven converted four straight free throws and scored on a drive for Mount Hebron to make it a 49-46 game with 22 seconds to play.

But Steve Bacon's two free throws sealed the win for Wilde Lake.


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