No. 10 Woodlawn eases past Dundalk for Baltimore County boys’ basketball championship; Brinkley and Warren combine for 35 (VIDEO HERE!)

by Donald Daniels

Woodlawn High boys’ basketball team didn’t play its best game Tuesday evening in the Baltimore County championship game against Dundalk. But an early cushion and some late free throw shooting was enough for the No. 10 Warriors, who claim the crown with a 69-61 decision over the 19th-ranked Owls at Towson University’s SECU Arena.

Senior guard Mark Brinkley finished with 18 points and Demauri Warren added with 17 points for Woodlawn (20-3 overall), which won its first league title since 2015. Rashaud Garrison and freshman forward Marlon Lewis each scored 15.

“We our very fortunate that they [Dundalk] missed enough three and we made enough twos to keep the lead,” Woodlawn coach Bobby Richardson said. “We not a very big team, but we are very tough and we shoot the ball very well.”

Leading by as many as 14 points in the third, Woodlawn’s advantage was shrink to 56-51, but Warren and Garrison each answered with 3-pointers to regain a double-digit advantage. The Warriors scored 10 points from the free throw line in the final quarter to keep the Owls at bay.

“We just had to make sure that we keep our composure,” Warren said. “We had to get back on defense because last game they [Dundalk] made a lost transition buckets, so we limited that and hit our shots when we needed to.”

Michael Johnson had a game-high 21 points and Jaylon Johnson added 14 for the Owls (18-5), making their first county final appearance. Heading into last week, Woodlawn and Milford Mill Academy appeared to be on a collision course, but the Millers had to forfeit its Feb. 9 victory over Dundalk because of an ineligible player.

Woodlawn, which knocked off defending county champ Perry Hall to move into position for SECU Arena, needed to beat Randallstown Friday in its regular season finale to secure its spot. The Warriors led 20-10 in the opening quarter Tuesday, and 14 midway through the third, but the Owls wouldn’t go away.

Johnson hit two 3-pointers and Tayquan Busby’s layup off a steal and a free throw brought Dundalk to within 56-51. The Owls, who received 16 points from Gates Cook, got no closer.

“The guys have gotten better with each game and we are looking forward to playoffs next week,” said Dundalk coach Steve Oppenheim, whose team reached the 3A North Region final last season.

The Warriors, also in the 3A North with Milford Mill and Dundalk, will play either Lansdowne or Towson Monday in the quarterfinals.

“Glad that we get a week off to rest our bodies,” said Warren. “We will be ready for the playoffs.”

Baltimore County boys’ basketball championship

at SECU Arena

No. 10 Woodlawn 69, No. 19 Dundalk 61

Woodlawn – Warren 17, Brinkley 18, Garrison 15, Lewis 15, Marshall 2, Blakeney 2. Totals 22 15-23 69.

Dundalk – J. Johnson 14, M. Johnson 21, Cook 16, Busby 6, Brown 2, Fedd Jr. 2. Totals 21 6-12 61.

Woodlawn 21 14 18 16 – 69

Dundalk 14 13 16 18 – 61