"It's All About The Game"

Owls fall just short






Ron Bailey, Publisher

PGCC can't complete comeback.

November 11, 2014 - The Prince George's County Owls went into Saturday's home contest with Sandhills (NC) in search of a NJCAA win, having fallen twice beforehand this season. Unfortunately it would not be, as PGCC fell short 86-84 in a scrappy, energy filled game.

PGCC repeatedly fought back from five-plus point deficits, only for Sandhills (4-0) to answer. Aiding the Owls towards games end was a diamond press. In the first half PGCC deployed a 1-2-2 full court zone press, of which head Owl Xavier Joyner noted via text afterward he liked.

Pat Johnson of PGCC, at the rim.

The first stanza saw exclusive zone use by Joyner - a unique 1-4 look - which was scrapped at intermission for a man scheme. "We are still experimenting with different defenses to see what we do well" shared Joyner. The change from zone was made "because I felt our zone created easy offense for them and man to man you can establish accountability for defending. The spotlight is on you if you let your man blow by you".

Offensively, Lavonte Sanders blew by Sandhill defenders in the first half, while Donnell Diggs did the same in the second. They scored 18 and 19 points, respectively.

It was Diggs' shot with around 45 seconds remaining that brought PGCC to within two points. Despite scrambling on defense and creating a turnover, the Owls missed a subsequent shot, sealing their doom.

Pat Johnson led the Owls (0-3 ) with 21 gritty points, while Robert Tyler dropped 12 points, battling foul trouble throughout.

Ishmael Baldwin paced Sandhill with 17 points, with Kenneth Walters chipping in 14 points. Angelo Mayes and Quincy Baggett also reached double figures with 11 and 10 points, respectively.

Though not closing the deal so to speak, PGCC can take solace in its second half performance - the Owls accounted for over 20 more points then, apparently a trend.

"My halftime message was you play the first half to get to the second half" revealed Joyner. "Basketball is a two half game - no team ever won the game in the first half. We have scored 67 points and 53 points in the second half of the last two games".

Next up for the Owls is a MDJUCO conference matchup at Baltimore City. Tip Off is 730p, Wednesday.

Sandhills hosts S4G Wednesday at 7p.




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