Rams gain early lead, beat Braves
Burrows scores 16 points in victory
Throughout much of the con- test, McDonough High School senior guard Dwane Burrows was frequently the smallest player on the floor in Wednes- day’s Southern Maryland Athletic Conference game against Chopticon.
But Burrows came through for the Rams in a big way, scoring a game-high 16 points, including three three-point field goals in the first half as the hosts built a 34-16 halftime advantage and eventually prevailed 47-36.
McDonough went to 2-3 overall with the win, while the Braves, who stunned North Point 71-66 one week earlier, fell to 1-3.
“I just felt more confident as the game went on,” said Bur- rows, who has played soccer and run cross country for the school in the past and might play lacrosse for the Rams in the spring. “I was able to get open and hit a couple of shots tonight. Everything that I do is to help my team. It was a good team win for us.”
Burrows actually started the game quietly and did not score until the last minute of the first quarter. Chopticon owned a 4-2 lead briefly, but the Rams countered with a 12-0 run capped by Burrows’ first three-pointer of the night. Amareay Walters converted a layup at the buzzer to give the Rams a 16-6 lead as he and Chopticon’s A.J. Hunt each had six points in the quarter.
“Dwane played a complete game for us tonight and so did a lot of our guys,” McDonough head coach Dave Rooney said. “We played within ourselves tonight. We did not come out and try to do too much. We were patient and we ran our plays and we did a good job boxing out their big guys on the boards. This was a big win for us.”
Burrows connected on his second three-pointer early in the second quarter, but that was immediately matched by Chopticon’s Brandon Lowe, who led the Braves with 10 points. The Rams responded with a 6-0 run over the next four minutes as their patience rose to the forefront. In fact, one Rams posses- sion lasted well over a minute.
Chopticon’s Vontae Hoffert finally ended the drought with a layup, but Burrows replied with a free throw and then his third three-pointer of the half to ex- tend McDonough’s lead to 17 points. Hunt made a pair of free throws with just over a minute remaining, but the Rams ended the half in style when senior Ean Batts connected on a three-pointer just before the buzzer for a 34-16 lead.
“That first half I thought we settled for too many jumpers,” said Chopticon assistant coach Mike Leo, who handled the postgame interview duties for head coach Glenn Larnerd Jr., who declined them. “I thought we did a much better job in the third quarter attacking the basket. But then in the fourth quarter we took too many shots from the perimeter and we didn’t take advantage of our size inside.”
Chopticon outscored McDonough 13-4 in the third quarter to get within single digits heading into the final frame. Lowe opened the second half with another three-pointer and later added two mid-range jumpers and Nicholas Snyder ended the frame with a layup after Burrows had briefly extended the Rams lead back to 11.
Neither team displayed much offensive prowess throughout the first three quarters of play on Wednesday and the fourth quarter offered even less. McDonough’s Gilbert Ford had one bucket early in the frame and Burrows added a short jumper later, but Chopticon went 0 for 10 from the floor in the quarter and netted their last seven points at the freethrow line.
Chopticon is scheduled to be at Caroline (Va.) at 7 tonight, while McDonough is slated to host Calvert at 6:30 tonight.
McDonough guard Ean Batts pulls up for a short jumper as Chopticon defender Nicholas Snyder converges and Rams teammate Dwane Burrows looks on. McDonough gained a comfortable first half lead en route to 47-36 victory over the Braves on Wednesday as Burrows led all scorers with 16 points.