Just a few short years ago Glenelg Country School and Annapolis Area Christian School were rivals in the MIAA C Conference. Wednesday night at Gilman the pair showed they’ve come a long way quickly when they shared the biggest stage in the MIAA B Conference and waged an entertaining battle for the league crown.
When the dust settled on an up and down affair, it was the top-seeded Dragons from Ellicott City who prevailed, topping AACS 75-62 before an enthusiastic full-house.
“I’m new here, so I don’t know the history,” said first year Glenelg Country head coach Kevin Quinlan on his program’s long rivalry with Annapolis Area Christian. “I know we’ve had some battles in the past.”
On this night, the battle came down to GCS having a little too much depth and athleticism for the scrappy Eagles, which knocked off defending champion St. Paul’s to reach the title game.
GCS built a working margin in the second quarter and was never seriously threatened, despite having to work into the fourth quarter to completely put AACS away.
Stars Isaiah Miles and Warren Powers led the Dragons with 18 points each and sophomore Kevin Boyd turned in a strong 11 point effort. Chancellor Barnard also finished with 11 points as he led an impressive effort by the Genelg Country bench.
Quinlan pointed to the effort of his bench as a critical factor.
“The key to the win was our subs. I think Amon Jones, Lawrence Davis, Chancellor Barnard came into the game and gave us great minutes,” said Quinlan. “They helped us stem the tide; they helped our guys to get a little rest and I think it really made us feel confident.”
AACS rallied from an 18-14 deficit in the second quarter with a three-pointer from Conner Lipinski and a fast-break lay-up by Phillip Perry to take a 19-18 lead with 6:00 minutes to play in the first half. Glenelg Country, however, closed the half with a 19-10 run to go to the intermission with a 37-28 advantage. The Dragon lead grew to as much as 15 in the second half.
Lipinski led all scorers with 29 points and he almost got AACS back into the contest late in the third quarter. Trailing 48-34, Lipinski rallied the Eagles with back-to-back threes and he got a great look at a third, but it bounced off the rim. A few minutes later he followed with a pair of free throws to bring AACS within six with 1:34 to play in the quarter.
Miles pushed the lead back to nine with an offensive rebound that led to a three-point play, sending the Dragons into the fourth quarter with a 51-42 advantage. From there Glenelg Country closed things out by converting 16-of-17 fourth quarter free throws.
“This is amazing. This is why I am here. I wanted to carry a team to a championship,” said Miles, who has been a star since his freshman year. “It wasn’t just me. We all did it together as a team. That’s why I am happy for us. It’s amazing. It’s a dream come true.”
|Glenelg Country 76, Annapolis Area Christian 62|
|AACS: Lipinski 29, Nwosu 7, Toney 4, Yates 4, Perry 8, Lewis 9, Harris. Totals 23 10-18 62.|
|Glenelg Country: Miles 18, Boyd 11, Powers 18, Barnard 11, Davis 7, Jordon 6, Koffel,, Jones 4. Totals 26 21-33 75.|