Damascus regroups after first loss; Tuscarora retains carrying out extra

Damascus regroups after first loss; Tuscarora retains carrying out extra
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No one wanted to talk for Damascus Coach Brian Humphrey to know his gamers’ disappointment.

“Physique language screams,” the coach mentioned.

The Hornets had simply misplaced to Walter Johnson, 68-66, in extra time of their ultimate common season sport Friday. They’d come again after falling behind 22-8, however it didn’t matter — the loss ended their likelihood at an undefeated season.

Humphrey mentioned his squad shocked groups final season, which ended within the state quarterfinals. However a roster crammed with returners couldn’t sneak previous anybody this season, particularly because the Hornets’ wins mounted.

“We’re the hunted,” he mentioned. “You understand it’s a privilege to be in that scenario, however that additionally comes with a accountability of it’s worthwhile to be mentally centered sufficient to organize for each sport.”

Wildcats followers stormed the court docket after their group’s win, one thing Humphrey mentioned would have been unimaginable when he took over this system.

Damascus (21-1) has no time to relaxation after its first loss. The Hornets face Churchill on Wednesday within the Montgomery County championship sport and head to the playoffs after that.

Wednesday’s sport gained’t influence the state standings, however the loss to Walter Johnson carries potential repercussions. The Hornets fell behind the 2 remaining undefeated Maryland 3A groups, Metropolis Faculty and Frederick; that would matter in the event that they advance to the state quarterfinals, the place all the groups are reseeded.

That’s now out of their management. Damascus hopes to funnel the feelings felt postgame Friday to gasoline its playoff run.

“We’re making an attempt to make use of that anger to assist us get going right here,” Humphrey mentioned, “give us somewhat spark for the playoffs.”

Middleton drives Tuscarora

In center faculty, Grace Middleton attended as many Tuscarora video games as she may. Her sisters, Isabellah and Kennedy, have been the Huskies’ stars, and she or he watched as every topped 1,000 factors. She wished to extend their legacy.

In December, Middleton handed the mark herself, and Friday she ended a title drought that dated from 2017 — when Kennedy was a junior and Isabellah was a freshman — by main the Huskies to the Dulles District championship with an 11-point win over Heritage.

Nonetheless, there’s extra to perform.

“I form of wished to set our data, however Kennedy and Isabellah maintain all of them,” Middleton mentioned. “However our group’s purpose is to make the state match. Us seniors have been taking part in collectively since center faculty. We wish to maintain it going for so long as we will.”

The youngest Middleton sister has a definite sport from these of her siblings. Grace is the household’s most adept transition scorer, which has been a boon for the fast-paced Huskies, who push from outlet passes off blocks from defensive phenom Alysa Carrigan, the college’s triple-jump report holder.

“These two take a lot accountability upon themselves,” Coach Tayler Dodson mentioned.

Although Dodson arrived after the elder sisters’ commencement, it was straightforward to inform Middleton was the product of a basketball household. She lived within the gymnasium.

She was comfy within the massive moments Friday. Earlier than the sport, she was braiding her teammates’ hair and joking round, as she at all times does, regardless of the group of followers rising to its largest contingent this 12 months. Inside minutes, she was 3 for 3 from outdoors. By sport’s finish, she had 33 factors and a trophy in hand.

“Yeah, that didn’t shock me in any respect,” Dodson mentioned. “While you’re teaching a participant like that, generally you possibly can simply allow them to go.”

On Tuesday the Huskies will face Millbrook — one of many two groups that beat them this season — within the first spherical of the Class 4 Area D match.

Ava Wooster, Southern: The junior notched 20 factors and 14 rebounds towards Patuxent earlier than including 23 factors, 10 rebounds and 4 blocks two days later towards Previous Mill. She had a career-high 40 factors and 26 rebounds in a Feb. 7 win over Northeast.

Tavarres Riley, Freedom (Woodbridge): The junior, the Cardinal District participant of the 12 months, scored 51 factors in a district semifinal loss to Potomac.

London Grey, Dunbar: The junior was named D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Affiliation match MVP after powering Dunbar to its fourth straight title with a 20-point, 13-rebound efficiency within the Crimson Tide’s 55-47 win over Coolidge on Saturday.

Caden Diggs, Bullis: The junior led the Bulldogs with 19 factors as they captured the Interstate Athletic Convention match title.

Montgomery County championship at Richard Montgomery, Wednesday, Clarksburg ladies vs. Churchill, 5:30 p.m.; Churchill boys vs. Damascus, 7:15 p.m.

Prince George’s County championship, Wednesday, ladies at 6 p.m., boys at 8 p.m.

Virginia Area 6D championship at Washington-Liberty, Friday, ladies at 6 p.m., boys at 8 p.m.

Mid-Atlantic Athletic Convention championshipSunday, 5:30 p.m.

Georgetown Visitation leans on powerful schedule

Now in his twenty eighth season teaching at Georgetown Visitation, Mike McCarthy doesn’t usually make declarative statements about one group or one other. Because the winner of 14 straight Impartial College League titles from 2007 to 2020, he has had so many good teams that it’s arduous to match them.

Nonetheless, as he wraps up one other common season with the Cubs, McCarthy appeared again on this marketing campaign and felt strongly it had been a superb one. A tricky one, however a superb one.

“That is most likely the hardest schedule we’ve ever had,” McCarthy mentioned. “We’ve performed and crushed some nice groups.”

It was a aware effort to make this schedule arduous, partially as a result of he knew he had loads of expertise returning. The No. 3 Cubs (19-4) introduced again 4 starters from final 12 months’s squad, together with Division I seniors Fadima Tall and Simone Lewis. With an skilled and proficient group, Visitation was capable of navigate a nonconference schedule that included groups from Florida, New York and Pennsylvania.

“We wished to check them,” McCarthy mentioned. “Generally you surprise if it is too powerful. And we handled accidents right here and there, so we weren’t at all times full power. However I be ok with the place we’re proper now.”

In convention play, Visitation encountered a steadily bettering ISL. Exterior of Sidwell Mates, ranked as top-of-the-line groups within the nation, packages comparable to Maret, Bullis and Holy Baby gave the Cubs, a standard powerhouse, good checks.

This week, the Cubs face the final word take a look at. They may shut the common season with a house sport towards Sidwell on Tuesday after which begin convention match play Friday. The Cubs are locked into the No. 2 seed, behind the Quakers. By Sunday, these groups may very well be competing for a title.

“The purpose is at all times to win the ISL common season, the ISL match after which town championship,” McCarthy mentioned. “These are at all times the three objectives yearly, and we’re going to maintain working to make these issues occur.”

College With out Partitions makes strides

Final season, when Destinee Jernigan was elevated from JV coach to varsity coach for the College With out Partitions boys’ ultimate three video games, the change in tradition was instantly felt by gamers and fogeys.

Jernigan’s willingness to be current and obtainable was important, they mentioned. So regardless of the group going 1-2 throughout her stint, Jernigan was named this system’s full-time head coach.

That call is already paying dividends: The Penguins (10-9) recorded the primary profitable season in program historical past.

“Initially, I believe that a number of the boys have been somewhat timid about having a feminine coach main them,” Jernigan mentioned. “However as soon as they received an opportunity to actually be round me and realized simply how invested and devoted to serving to them enhance that I used to be, it actually unlocked one thing.”

College With out Partitions is primarily recognized for teachers, and the athletic division has restricted monetary assets. So Jernigan runs the boys’ junior varsity and varsity packages with none assistants.

The Penguins don’t have any gymnasium to name their very own, so each the boys’ and ladies’ groups follow on the outdated Banneker Excessive — on the identical time, with every group taking half of the court docket.

“When you’ve restricted assets, you must get artistic,” Jernigan mentioned. “The one time we will truly play full court docket is after we swimsuit up for our video games. So conditioning and speaking by eventualities on whiteboards and issues like which might be important for us.”

College With out Partitions sits in a four-way tie for the final two spots within the D.C. State Athletic Affiliation playoffs A bracket. Jernigan mentioned the Penguins ought to discover out this week whether or not their season will proceed.

“No matter how issues play out, each child on this group needs to be pleased with what they completed,” Jernigan mentioned. “. . . All they did was exit and make faculty historical past. I couldn’t be happier to be their coach.”

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