Mercy girls scoring victories with confidence, balanceGames to watch
Coach Mary Ella Marion saw the turnaround in her Mercy girls basketball team start last season, but it really showed last week.
The unranked Magic upset then-No. 13 Archbishop Spalding, 46-37, on Monday and knocked off then-No. 6 McDonogh, 41-38, on Wednesday.
"We were 14-12 last season, but I started to see the work ethic. I could see some little things, whether it was in a game or in practice. I could see what the kids could accomplish," said Marion, whose team is 14-2 overall and 9-1 in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference.
Khadija Mitchell, who hit two free throws in the final seconds to give the Magic the lead for good against McDonogh, leads the team in scoring at nine points per game. But the Magic relies on everyone.
Carissa Shropshire came off the bench to score all 10 of her points in the third quarter against McDonogh, and Mary Stefanski scored six in the quarter. Jessica Zikorus had 18 rebounds.
"The girls are really gaining confidence," Marion said. "They don't get frustrated when they get down, and I think that's a big thing."
The Magic will need that confidence Sunday when they travel to meet No. 1 Seton Keough, the only local team Mercy has lost to this season.
Loyola basketball -- Coming into this season, the Dons thought they had a team that could compete with some of the top boys teams in the Baltimore Catholic League and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference. The Dons, unranked at the start of the season, proved their point after a brutal three-game stretch between Jan. 4 and Wednesday. Loyola upset No. 5 St. Frances, 60-46, before falling in competitive games to top-ranked Mount St. Joseph, 50-42, and No. 11 Towson Catholic, 47-41. "We always felt like we had a good team," Loyola coach Josh Davalli said. "When you play against the better teams in the league, you get an idea of where you're at. We saw we can compete against those teams." Against Mount St. Joseph and Towson Catholic, Davalli said Loyola got off to slow starts but rallied late to get in positions to win. The Dons are led by three senior captains: shooting guard James Davenport, point guard Steele Stanwick and forward Sal Schittino.
Owings Mills wrestling -- Two Eagles were honored as outstanding wrestlers last week at the Franklin Invitational tournament. Avi Friedman, who wrestles at 103 pounds, was voted Outstanding Lower-weight Wrestler by coaches of participating teams. Tony Mack, who wrestles at 160, won Outstanding Upper-weight Wrestler of the tournament. Mack has been named Outstanding Wrestler at every tournament he's been in this season.
Upsets in the Top 15 girls basketball poll last week. In addition to then-No. 10 Mount Hebron beating then-No. 5 Atholton, unranked Mercy (twice), Catonsville, Severn and Reservoir knocked off ranked teams.