You Should See . . .
Kenyan McAfee, Suitland
The 5-foot-11 guard scored 31 points to lead the Rams to an 81-76 overtime victory over Northwestern on Friday. It was Suitland's third victory of the season, which already equals last year's win total. McAfee, who averages a team-high 16 points per game, is typical of this year's Suitland team--he is a junior (there are nine juniors on the team), he plays another sport (football) and he's in his first year of playing basketball at the school.
"We have a lot of new guys in the program, and I think we're starting to gel now," first-year coach Mark Woods said. The overtime victory "makes our guys believe that when it's close and down to the wire, we can pull through. Last year, we had no wins in the county [Suitland's three wins this year have come against county teams], so some of the kids feel relieved that we've beaten some county teams."
Suitland faces Laurel on Friday; the Rams won the first meeting between the teams, snapping a 22-game losing streak.
You Should Have Seen . . .
Sean Brooks, Central
The 6-6 senior forward had a game-high 25 points and 23 rebounds in the Falcons' 73-34 victory over Douglass on Friday. That kind of performance has become routine of late for the Drexel-bound Brooks; in his previous game, a 53-48 win over DuVal on Jan. 14, Brooks had 20 points and 24 rebounds.
"Last year, he had some big games where he'd have 37 points and 24 rebounds," Central Coach Walter Fulton said.
"This year, he hasn't had any of the 30-point games, but he's been consistent with 20 points-plus. We don't have to put the weight of the team on his back, but if he can score in the 20s and give us 15 to 20 rebounds a night, we're in good shape."
On Tap: Boys Games
DeMatha vs. Gonzaga at Catholic University
Thursday, 7:30 p.m.
Top-ranked DeMatha wants to put this game away early, considering what happened when these teams met last season. Gonzaga beat DeMatha three times last season--all on last-second shots.
In the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference tournament semifinals, the third meeting of the season, then-senior Billy Glading made a three-pointer with one second remaining to give the Eagles a 47-46 victory.
DeMatha junior Billy Edelin has been on a roll, averaging 30 points in his past three games.
Oxon Hill at Eleanor Roosevelt
Friday, 7:15 p.m.
The No. 9 Raiders could be the county's hottest team; Roosevelt's 73-63 victory over host Parkdale on Friday was the team's eighth in a row. The last team to beat the Raiders? That would be No. 4 Oxon Hill, which won, 74-70, on Dec. 17.
"We struggled a little bit early, but we've come together as a team and everyone understands their roles," said Roosevelt Coach Glenn Farello, whose team lost three of its first five games. "This is what we expected [before the season]. But we hope to get better; there's no question we need to."
Roosevelt does not have a player who can match up with the Clippers' 6-9 center Michael Sweetney, but the Raiders have three tall and athletic guards in 6-6 Delonte Holland, 6-5 Edward Basden and 6-3 Delonte West.
Montrose Christian at Riverdale Baptist
Tuesday, 7 p.m.
No. 7 Riverdale Baptist sent a message to the rest of the Beltway League with its 71-68 victory over host Montrose Christian Jan. 10. Now it is the Crusaders' turn to host the No. 8 Mustangs.
You Should See . . .
Charetta Oliver, Oxon Hill
Coach Debra Anderson calls this 5-2 sophomore guard "the spark plug of our team." Oliver is the Clippers' second-leading scorer (12.1 points per game), has done a good job of defending--she usually takes the opponent's top guard--and effectively distributes the basketball. On Friday, she scored a team-high 17 points and had five assists in Oxon Hill's 54-40 win over Laurel.
The Clippers are in the midst of a tough four-game week: Suitland (Monday), Northwestern (Tuesday), Bladensburg (Wednesday) and Eleanor Roosevelt (Friday). Next Tuesday, Oxon Hill faces No. 4 Largo for the second time this season. Oxon Hill won six straight after losing, 62-34, to the Lions on Dec. 21.
You Should Have Seen . . .
Crystal Washington, McNamara
The 6-2 senior center nearly posted back-to-back triple-doubles last weekend. In the Mustangs' 56-53 victory over Holy Cross on Friday, Washington had 18 points, 12 rebounds and 12 blocked shots.
The following night, she had 8 points, 16 rebounds and 12 blocked shots in a 55-47 loss to No. 1 Riverdale Baptist. She also helped keep the Crusaders' talented 6-3 forward, Tiffany Stansbury, scoreless.
"That was the Crystal Washington that Maryland recruited," McNamara Coach Mike Bozeman said of Washington, who has signed with the Terrapins.
"We've seen glimpses of her, we've always seen the potential. But she has really stepped up with her leadership."
On Tap: Girls Games
Bullis at Riverdale Baptist
Monday, 7 p.m.
Top-ranked Riverdale Baptist extended its Washington area-best winning streak to 23 games with a 55-47 victory over McNamara on Saturday. The Crusaders' streak will be put to the test several times over the final weeks of the season, beginning with this game against No. 5 Bullis. Riverdale Baptist likes to run, and so does Bullis.
Each team features some of the area's best players; Riverdale has Tiffany Stansbury and Joi Jefferson, while Bullis has junior Monique Currie.
Douglass at Gwynn Park
Tuesday, 7:15 p.m.
Gwynn Park was 11-2 heading into Monday's game at Crossland, yet Coach Marvin Vann said he still is in the process of evaluating his team. "I'm not at the point to say that we're a good team," Vann said recently. "I think that there are things we do well, and there are other things we need improvement on. The next four games will tell a lot about the team." The four games in question are against Crossland (Monday), Potomac (Friday), Douglass (Tuesday) and Fairmont Heights (Feb. 4). Seniors Donna Williams and Candace Wilkins and sophomore Charmaine Carr have led Gwynn Park in scoring.
DuVal at Fairmont Heights
Tuesday, 7:15 p.m.
No. 17 Fairmont Heights crept into The Post's Top 20 after winning its first 10 games of the season. On Tuesday, the Hornets will face a team that has grown accustomed to being ranked--No. 16 DuVal, the defending 3A state champion. Fairmont Heights is not particularly tall--the Hornets have no players over 6 feet--which could be a problem against DuVal, which is led by 6-0 senior Chinny Nwagbo (who scored 29 points in a 74-54 win over High Point on Friday).