Blair surrenders in easy Colonel victory
DEC. 22, NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM-
The Blair girls' basketball squad was simply over-powered Wednesday night by a crisp and explosive Magruder team. Playing without senior phenom and co-captain Brittany Higgins forced many non-starters to step up and attempt to fill the void Higgins left in the Blazers offense after suffering an injury. Blair struggled throughout this game to put numbers up and overcome Magruder's aggressive man-to-man defense. However, a powerful opponent and team obstacles were not enough to ease the frustration inevitable in losing by a deficit of 23 points (38-61).
The Blazers seemed to consistently lose energy as the night wore on against Magruder. With energy went offense, defense and Blair's usual zest to win. After scoring 17 points in the first quarter, Blair was held to only seven points in each of the following quarters. Magruder's good shooting range was obviously a factor in this win; the Colonels managed to pull off lay-ups, three-pointers and shots from all angles throughout the game, while Blair struggled in search of any offensive success. For instance, it was not until seven minutes into the period that senior Tiera Simmons scored Blair's first shot of the second quarter with a lay-up.
The first quarter began very competitively for both Blair and Magruder with flashy play from both sides. Blair showed zeal in their repeated attempts to take full advantage of any and all opportunities handed to them by the Colonels. However, nerves were also evident in Blair's game, as the girls struggled to make routine plays. Senior co-captain Vicky Dean shined in this first quarter, making a nice steal followed by an undefended lay-up during the seventh minute. Senior Tigisty Berhe also impressed, sinking a three-pointer with 40 seconds left in the period, bringing the Blair deficit down from five to two.
The second quarter found the Blazer offense somewhat stunted. Blair shot only 13% from the field during the period, and experienced increased difficulty putting together plays with fewer starters on the court. Half time found the girls down 24-30, deeper in the hole than ever before. In the third quarter Blair returned to using more of its starters, yet still could not find enough offensive opportunities, again scoring only seven points in the period.
Energy and grit seemed to be at its lowest in the fourth quarter, when, half of the way through, Magruder reached a twenty-point lead over Blair, a deficit that was not only the highest the Blazers had seen all game but also a seemingly insurmountable obstacle for the already weary girls. The final minutes saw dramatic last-ditch shots from Blair, but the girls were never able to come close to the Colonels' lead and fell resignedly.
Potentially more serious trouble also struck as the clock wound down, when, with only three seconds left on the clock, Dean fell and injured her knee. In visible pain, Dean had to be helped off of the court. Dean has been a starter for all of this year and has contributed both leadership and athleticism to the team. It remains to be seen what implications this injury will have on the rest of Blair's season.
The Blazers' next regular season game is Jan. 4 at Springbrook at 7:00 p.m. The girls will also participate in next week's Thomas Stone Holiday Tournament held in Waldorf, Maryland. They will face Bowie at 2:00 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 27 in the opening round of the tournament.
Ellie Blalock. Ellie is a SENIOR in the CAP program at Blair. She enjoys such activities as traveling, being able to say "water" in six languages and having heart-to-heart chats with eccentric politicians. If you're in need of a laugh, please ask Ellie about her driving record...you … More »