North Point swim teams fly to reg­u­lar sea­son

Back­court an­chors Ea­gles girls past West­lake for 7th straight win; Wolver­ines boys beat North Point

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By AJ MA­SON aj­ma­son@somd­news.com

When fresh­man Sy­nia John­son ar­rived at North Point over the sum­mer, there was lit­tle doubt that the point guard could be an im­pact player in the South­ern Mary- land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence.

Thus far, John­son has sur­faced well in the start- ing role in the back­court for head coach Michael Ser­pone and the Ea­gles girls bas­ket­ball team.

In turn, North Point has seen positive re­sults. And Wed­nes­day night, that pos- itiv­ity con­tin­ued as the Ea- gles rolled to a 73-57 vic­tory over the vis­it­ing West­lake Wolver­ines in a SMAC Po­tomac Di­vi­sion con­test.

It was the sev­enth vic­tory in a row for North Point (12-2, 6-0 SMAC Po­tomac), which has yet to suf­fer a loss to its con­fer­ence counter- parts, di­vi­sion and non­di­vi­sion. The Ea­gles are sched­uled to host St. Charles at 6:30 p.m. Fri­day.

“We started off sloppy with West­lake’s press, but we got it to­gether and fin­ished in tran­si­tion. It was a game of runs,” Ser­pone said. “We did a good job with our traps on de­fense and pok­ing the ball out from be­hind. That is what we do, so it was a good win.”

With a start­ing lineup that fea­tures all guards, North Point was an­chored by

Necole Hope, who led all scor- ers with 28 points, scor­ing 22 in the first half, while John­son fin­ished with 20.

“We shared the ball well and had each other’s back on de­fense. It feels great to play a role for the team and step up when they need me,” said John­son, who made two three-point­ers in the game.

On John­son’s sig­nif­i­cance, Ser­pone said: “She’s done a great job. Sy­nia has a feel and un­der­stand­ing of a game that is way above that of a fresh­man. She’s an un­selfish play­maker who un­der­stands how this team func­tions and what her role in that equa­tion is. She’s meshed well with all of her team­mates and that’s a trib­ute to how she plays the game.”

North Point stuck to its high in­tense, full-court press and fast­break of­fense mixed in with ef- fec­tive out­side shoot­ing to keep West­lake’s de­fense hon­est.

The Wolver­ines took an early 8-7 lead in the first quar­ter, but the Ea­gles re­sponded on a 13-0 run and led 22-12 af­ter one.

West­lake (10-5, 4-2) started the sec­ond quar­ter on a 7-0 run, but North Point ex­tended the lead to 40-28 at half­time. Hope and John­son com­bined to score 33 of the team’s 40 firsthalf points.

“This game was very in­tense. West­lake al­ways plays hard and their our county ri­vals,” Hope said. “We just brought a lot of ball pres­sure and we were able to ex­e­cute on a lot of layups on the other end. I thought we were very phys­i­cal with them tonight and we were able to pull away with the lead.”

For the rest of the game, West­lake could not bring the Ea­gles’ deficit be­low dou­ble dig­its. North Point led 59-36 af- ter three quar­ters.

West­lake had three play­ers in dou­ble fig­ures as Latavia Wash­ing­ton had a team-high 16 points, Jasmine Ghol­son fin­ished with 15 and Gwen­dolyn Brown added 12 points.

The Wolver­ines were able to get to the free-throw line, mak- ing 25 of 38 (66 per­cent) for the game, while North Point was 10 for 17 (59 per­cent).

West­lake is sched­uled to trav- el to McDonough for a 6:30 p.m. con­test Fri­day.

“North Point played hard from start to fin­ish and got ev­ery loose ball and they nev- er gave up,” Wolver­ines head coach Marvin Bin­ion II said. “We preach that all the time and we have to bring that same in­ten­sity. But we are pro­gress­ing and get­ting bet­ter. We can learn a lot from tonight.”

West­lake boys hold off North Point

With a sold out crowd on hand at West­lake, the Wolver- ines sur­vived in the end with a 75-71 win over the Ea­gles on Wed­nes­day night.

Com­ing off a 77-54 home loss to Prince Ge­orge’s County power Eleanor Roo­sevelt on Mon­day, West­lake set the tone in the first half, tak­ing a 18-10 lead af­ter one quar­ter and went up 31-25 at half­time.

The Wolver­ines (12-4, 5-1) took a 48-43 lead af­ter three quar­ters. North Point outscored West­lake 28-26, but it wasn’t enough.

West­lake se­nior guard Jeff Sim­mons led all scor­ers with 26 points, nailing 14 of 20 from the free-throw line. Se­nior for­ward Amir Lawrence fin­ished with 14 points, while Wayne Young added 13, in­clud­ing three three-point­ers.

North Point (8-8, 3-3) had four play­ers in dou­ble fig­ures as guard Jalen Gibbs fin­ished with a team-high 19 points. Ma­lik Lawrence fin­ished with 18 points. Satchel Ball scored 15 points, hit­ting four threes, and Cameron Ch­es­ley added 13.

The Ea­gles are sched­uled to be at St. Charles at 7 p.m. Fri­day, while West­lake is sched­uled to host McDonough at 6:30 p.m. Fri­day.

STAFF PHOTO BY AJ MA­SON

North Point fresh­man guard Sy­nia John­son sets up the of­fense in Wed­nes­day’s 73-57 win over the vis­it­ing West­lake Wolver­ines. John­son fin­ished with 20 points, scor­ing 11 in the first half.

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