By WILL ROBINSON
11:51 PM EST, November 14, 2012
Wednesday’s Maryland JuCo Conference women’s basketball matchup between Hagerstown Community College and Chesapeake College was a tale of two halves.
For the Hawks, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
HCC matched up well with Chesapeake in the first half, but the Skipjacks found their rhythm in the second en route to a 76-62 victory.
HCC (1-3, 1-1) held a steady lead through the majority of the first half, using a methodical half-court offense to find the open shooter. Katie Sprecher and Miesha Adams paced the Hawks’ offense with 15 combined first-half points.
With the Hawks up 31-26, T’Naya Cannady hit a field goal and Katara Pressley sunk two free throws to cut Chesapeake’s deficit to one. From there, the Skipjacks went on a 6-4 run to take a 36-35 lead, extending it to 40-35 by the end of the first half. Freshmen Brittany Taylor and Sydney Small had 25 combined first-half points for Chesapeake (2-0, 2-0).
“You play the first half by the way you practice. We practiced flat yesterday and we came out flat tonight,” said Chesapeake coach Damon Nichols. “I kept telling them that we’ve got to come out and play our game.”
“(Chesapeake) is really athletic. We came out a little flat and we didn’t contain, and that team has a lot of experience,” said HCC coach Vicky Bullett. “We were trying to get to the line and get three-point plays, but things weren’t happening for us. We’ve got to keep pushing.”
HCC came out shooting well in the first half, but the Hawks ended up shooting 13-for-35 in the period. That cold spell continued for HCC in the second half.
Chesapeake started the second half on an 8-0 run to extend its lead to 48-35 before Sasha Orr hit a 3-pointer for HCC. The Skipjacks continued shooting lights out, eventually extending their lead to 20 points. Starting guard Najah Chambers found her stroke for Chesapeake — scoring nine of her 11 points on 4-for-5 shooting — while Small added eight. Small finished with a game-high 20 points off the bench for the Skipjacks.
“I want them to pay attention to detail. We want to pass and shoot,” said Nichols. “Passing moves the ball better than dribbling. We also did a better job boxing out in the second half. Credit goes to HCC, though. They played a real good first half.”
HCC connected on only 9 of 32 shots in the second half, many of which came on second and third chances in the post. Alyssa Fort and Kristen Mstowski led the Hawks with six points each in the half.
“We’re going to continue to work on our game. We don’t want to peak too early,” said Bullett. “Chesapeake is a good team and we’ll continue to play good teams. I don’t want to play teams that won’t make our girls more complete players. I want to play teams that will push us.”
Sprecher finished with 10 points, Tyana Monette had seven points and five rebounds and Orr and Miesha Adams had seven points each for the Hawks.
Taylor had 15 points and seven rebounds, Chambers had 11 points and Tyonna Teamer had 10 points for Chesapeake.
Chesapeake 76, HCC 62
CHESAPEAKE (2-0, 2-0)
Taylor 7 0-0 15, Cannady 2 2-6 6, Kebe 2 0-0 4, Chambers 5 1-1 11, Pressley 1 3-4 5, Small 6 5-6 20, Tourville 2 1-2 5, Teamer 3 3-4 10. Totals 28 15-23 76.
HAGERSTOWN CC (1-3, 1-1)
Smothers 1 2-4 4, Connelly 0 0-1 0, Fort 2 2-4 6, Orr 2 2-2 7, Adams 3 2-4 7, Comfort 1 0-0 2, Mstowski 2 2-2 6, Burch 1 0-0 3, Sprecher 5 0-0 10, Leacock 2 2-2 6, Monette 2 3-4 7, Wallace 1 2-2 4. Totals 22 17-25 62.
Halftime — Chesapeake, 40-35. 3-point goals — Chesapeake 5 (Small 3, Taylor, Teamer); HCC 2 (Orr, Burch).
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