Tough start for Lions bas­ket­ball

The Dundalk Eagle - - FRONT PAGE - By BILL GATES [email protected]­pub.com Fol­low me on Twit­ter @DEa­gle_s­ports

Al­ready off to a rough start, the CCBC Dun­dalk men’s bas­ket­ball team faced an­other chal­lenge when it hosted a pow­er­ful Bal­ti­more City Com­mu­nity Col­lege team last week.

The Lions played well in the first half and hung with the vis­it­ing Pan­thers as they went into half­time only down 30-25.

Bal­ti­more City opened the sec­ond half with a 13-4 run and steadily pulled away as its de­fense clamped down on Dun­dalk.

The 75-44 loss to Bal­ti­more City on Nov. 27, cou­pled with a 79-55 loss at Richard Bland Col­lege on Satur­day, dropped Dun­dalk’s record to 2-8.

The Richard Bland game was also the start of a month-plus road trip for Dun­dalk. The Lions do not have an­other home game util they face Ce­cil Col­lege on Jan­uary 9.

In be­tween, Dun­dalk plays four road games and par­tic­i­pates in the Ce­cil Col­lege Hol­i­day Mixer on Dec. 1415.

By then, the Lions will hope to have solved the prob­lem of a strug­gling of­fense.

The de­fense has played well, but Dun­dalk has strug­gled to keep pace when it has the ball.

In three of its losses, Dun­dalk has held its op­po­nent to 70 or fewer points. In only three games has an op­po­nent ex­ceeded 80 points, and one of those games was a 107-96 Lions’ vic­tory over Rock­land Com­mu­nity Col­lege.

Dun­dalk is av­er­ag­ing 67 points per game. Take away that Rock­land win, and the Lions are av­er­ag­ing 62 points per game.

Dun­dalk is also strug­gling on the back­boards, get­ting out­re­bounded by an av­er­age of nearly 13 re­bounds per game.

The 44 points against Bal­ti­more City was a sea­son low. Only twice have the Lions scored more than 70 points in a game.

De­fense kept Dun­dalk in the game against Bal­ti­more City. But missed op­por­tu­ni­ties pre­vented the Lions from tak­ing ad­van­tage and pos­si­bly lead­ing at half­time.

With Bal­ti­more City lead­ing 11-8 five min­utes into the game, Dun­dalk’s de­fense held the Pan­thers score­less on nine of their next 11 pos­ses­sions. At the end of that stretch, the Lions had only chopped one point off their deficit, trail­ing 15-13 after a three-poin­ter by Ibra­heem Bundu and a layup by Chris­tion Wright.

Bal­ti­more City ex­tended its lead to 20-13, but the Lions re­sponded with their best stretch of the game to close to with­ing 22-20 with 4:53 left in the first half.

Dunda;k scored on four of seven pos­ses­sions, get­ting bas­kets from Daniel Byrd, Richard Hib­bert and Wright, along with a free throw from Dawahn Coaxum.

But that was as close as Dun­dalk would get for the rest of the game.

The Lions scored on only two of their first 12 pos­ses­sions of the sec­ond half to fall be­hind by 14 points.

Wright scored on a layup, then made a steal and took it in for a score to make it a 10-point game, 45-35, but it would be nine min­utes be­fore the Lions scored an­other bas­ket from the floor.

Bal­ti­more City outscored Dun­dalk 23-3 dur­ing the cold spell to es­sen­tially de­cide the game.

Wright leads the team in scor­ing at 12.8 per game, while War­rick God­win is av­er­ag­ing 10.7.

The loss dropped Dun­dalk to 0-3 in the Mary­land JuCo League. The Lions have also lost to Mont­gomer y Col­lege 93-74 and Prince Ge­orge’s Com­mu­nity Col­lege 78-67.

After the Jan. 9 home game against Ce­cil, the Lions play their next four games on the road be­fore a Jan­uar y 25 game against Al­le­gany Col­lege.

Daniel Byrd flies to the bas­ket dur­ing CCBC Dun­dalk’s loss to Bal­ti­more City last week.

PHO­TOS BY BILL GATES

Chris­tion Wright is lead­ing CCBC Dun­dalk in scor­ing this sea­son while av­er­ag­ing nearly 13 points per game.

Dun­dalk’s Richard Hib­bert is chal­lenged by Ndongo Ndaw of Bal­ti­more City as he drives for a layup.

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