When teams face St. Frances in boys basketball, keeping Maryland-bound senior guard Sean Mosley uncomfortable is typically the goal.
Whether it's denying him the ball, double-teaming him when he gets it or roughing him up when he drives the lane, most teams hope slowing down Mosley will slow down the entire Panthers team.
No. 13 John Carroll tried such tactics against No. 2 St. Frances last night. But as with every other area team, the plan didn't work. Mosley scored 34 points as the Panthers cruised to a 70-54 victory.
"They tried to double-team me; I know a lot of teams are going to try to come out and do that," Mosley said. "I was able to split it, other guys got in the open court and it all worked out."
Mosley made 12 of 14 field-goal attempts and went 8-for-10 from the free-throw line.
"Sean's a great player. They're going to double-team Sean and they're going to beat him up," St. Frances coach William Wells said of Mosley, who also had eight rebounds and four steals. "The other guys came in, though, and contributed."
St. Frances (11-4, 4-0 Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference) was playing short-handed, with starters Donte Holmes and Greg Lewis out because of injury, but the Panthers got a strong effort from freshman point guard Ronald Williams, who scored 19 points.
St. Frances started out slowly, falling behind 7-2, before Mosley took over. First, he crossed over his defender and made an 18-foot jump shot. On the next possession, he hit a three-pointer. He scored on back-to-back jump shots two possessions later and had 11 points in the first quarter.
He stayed hot in the second quarter. With the Panthers leading by two, Mosley was covering talented Patriots forward Isaiah Philmore on defense. He stripped the ball from him in the frontcourt, sprinted down court and rose up for a powerful jam.
The dunk sparked a 12-4 run, and St. Frances had a 10-point lead by halftime. Philmore led John Carroll (9-5, 3-2) with 18 points and eight rebounds but struggled defending Mosley man-to-man.
After traveling to Virginia over the holidays, the Panthers knew exactly what they needed when they got back home.
"We come back to Baltimore, you know we can't lose here," Mosley said. "We're showing Baltimore City what we really can do."