Magruder Holds On Versus a Game Gwynn Park 67-61
Entering the 2011 Robert’s Oxygen Holiday Invitational most fans thought that the most lopsided game of the tournament would be the match-up that featured #9 Magruder and #25 Gwynn Park.
Those who stuck around for the tournament finale saw arguably the best game of the two day showcase, an up and down affair that saw Magruder’s big 5 click on all cylinders. The Yellow Jackets however showed incredible fight and kept the game close throughout. Magruder connected on ten 3 point field goals, 8 of which came from junior’s Nick Griffin and Justin Witmer. The pair combined for 25 first half points. Witner finished the game with 19, Griffin 17 and senior Garland Owens scored 19 as well.
Despite losing the contest, Gwynn Park’s fight and resolve were the story of the game. For the third consecutive game and fifth time this season, the Yellow Jackets were led in scoring by sharp shooting Junior guard Jalen Harris. Harris scored 21 on Wednesday night and has now made 19 3-pointers through 8 games this season. He has made at least two 3’s in every game this season but two and is also shooting over 80% from the free throw line. Center Marcel Boyd added 9 points and 5 rebounds but was only 1-7 from the free throw line and missed two critical free throws with seconds remaining that could have brought the score down to a one possesion lead. Guard Xavier Richards had a double-double for the Yellow Jackets scoring 15 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
The tournament was great experience for a Magruder team that Gwynn Park coach Mike Glick considers the favorite to win the 4A state championship this year. With Baltimore’s Patterson High School being moved down to the 3A, most consider 4A defending state champions North Point, and Magruder, the class of the division. The problem for Magruder is that they don’t get tested often. Their season opener with DeMatha was a great test, as was this Christmas tournament, but the Montgomery County Schedule they play offers only a couple of games that should challenge the #9 Colonels.
When the regular season resumes after the new year, Magruder will host Gaithersburg on January 3 while Gwynn Park hosts Broadneck on the 4th.