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Gaithersburg dominates Churchill, 90-56, earns second seed in playoffs

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20180216 Churchill Gaithersburg Boys Bball 5Gaithersburg's Jordan Hawkins blocks Churchill's Valvin Piker's drive to basket. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  POTOMAC — The visiting Gaithersburg Trojans varsity boys basketball team ended the regular season with a bang Friday when the Trojans strode into the Dawg Pound and handed the Churchill Bulldogs their 12th loss of the season, 90-56.

The Trojans proved their prowess on both sides of the ball as the defense forced multiple turnovers and beat the Bulldogs on the defensive boards. Freshman guards Jordan Hawkins (26 points) and Jao Ituka (18 points) continued their season-long campaign of highlight reel plays that gave Gaithersburg a comfortable lead for most of the evening.

The Trojans began to pull away after an 18-point unanswered scoring run lasted into the beginning of the second quarter. Churchill’s student section, the Dawg Pound, was uncharacteristically quiet as they watched Hawkins steal the ball during a fast break and take it back up the court for an easy two points.

The Bulldogs appeared renewed in the second half as junior guards John Mbeng and Michael Janis combined for 14 third-quarter points that cut into Gaithersburg’s substantial halftime lead.

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Blair Blazers take down Blake in girls hoops, 50-32

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Blair's Nora Olagbaju skies for an offense rebound and put back aginst Blake defenders. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKBlair's Nora Olagbaju skies for an offense rebound and put back aginst Blake defenders. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  SILVER SPRING – The Montgomery Blair Blazers varsity girls basketball team made a statement Tuesday when it handily defeated the visiting Blake Bengals, 50-32.

The Blazers opened the game with an 11-0 scoring run and never relinquished their lead. Senior guard Alayna McFadden (15 points) and senior forward Aissatou Bokoum (10 points) made sure a Bengals comeback was out of the question as McFadden cut through the Blake defense and Bokoum dominated on the offensive boards.

Even though Blake created turnovers and players were going to the ground to grab the ball, the Bengals couldn’t translate their efforts to the scoreboard and trailed 28-9 at halftime.

Blake’s pair of shining moments came courtesy of senior guard Kennedy Love in the third quarter. Love hit two back-to-back three-pointers to try to cut into Blair’s lead. However, with McFadden shouting instructions to her teammates from the top of the key and senior forward Nora Olagbaju registering six points in the third quarter, the Bengals couldn’t recover.

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Bullis boys victorious on Senior Night against Landon, 61-50

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Bullis’ Vado Morse drives for a reverse layup on his way to 19 points against Landon. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKBullis’ Vado Morse drives for a reverse layup on his way to 19 points against Landon. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  POTOMAC — The scene had all the trappings of a heated Interstate Athletic Conference rivalry.

Before an overflow crowd, Bullis senior point guard Vado Morse scored a game-high 19 points Friday to lead the Bulldogs to a 61-50 victory over Landon on Senior Night at Bullis Athletic Center.

“It was a good team win,” said Morse. “A good team performance.”

Morse said he wanted to impress the crowd and put on a show in front of the audience.

“I had a slow start at the beginning of the first half and I knew that I had to pick it up to get momentum for my team so I tried to do that the second half,” he said.

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Poolesville Falcons destroy Magruder Colonels 60-13 in girls’ hoops

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20180125 Poolesville vs Magruder 1Poolesville's Eren Green leverages her 6'3" frame to block a jump shot from Magruder's Olivia Glaszer. Green finished the game with 12 points. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKROCKVILLE — Friday night was not a good night for the Magruder Colonels girls’ basketball team at all.

The Poolesville Falcons came in and showed no mercy as they demonstrated why they’re undefeated, now 16-0. To the credit of the Colonels, though, it was as lopsided a match as it could be.

The Colonels fielded a team of six players and had to do without junior star point guard Laila Grant. To add to their troubles, they would be up against an undefeated Falcons squad whose players were generally taller and more physical.

“Once that happened, we just basically defensively tried to go straight up, straight up defense,” said Falcons head coach Fred Swick.

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Churchill wrestlers earn Paint Branch crown, eye Damascus showdown

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20180120 The Pit 195lb 1Both Andrew Welch of Churchill and Ike Kalu of Western Tech are exhausted as their 195-lb weight class finals took 8:00. Welch prevailed for the win. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  Sean Mahan (145), Fio Tranquill (182) and Andrew Welch (195) won titles, with seniors Chris Ervin (120) and Jack Connolly (138) finishing second as Churchill placed 11 wrestlers within the top six of their weight classes to win the 21-team Paint Branch Invitational Tournament on Jan. 19 and 20.

The Bulldogs (18-0 overall, 8-0 minus tournament dual meets) outscored runner-up Old Mill of Anne Arundel County 220.5-to-203.5, continuing their tremendous year under coaches Tim Lowe and Tony Howard heading into Saturday’s tri-meet with Quince Orchard at 15-time county champion Damascus.

At Paint Branch, Elijah Jack (152) finished third, Ryan Kaplow (220) and Alec Velikanov (285) were fourth, Carlos Villamar (132) fifth, and Parker DeSalvio (160) and Mac Ballman (170) both sixth.

The Bulldogs are now 3-0 in tournaments, having gone 10-0 to win the Rocket Launch Duals at Richard Montgomery and captured the title at the Joe Verciglio Memorial Tournament at Chantilly High of Virginia under Lowe, who was a two-time state champion at Einstein while Howard was a three-timer at Magruder.

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