Behind a sleek passing game and sound leadership from its seniors, unbeaten Mount Hebron exposed Largo's weaknesses in the second half to win the IAABO girls basketball championship, 54-31, last night at Prince George's Community College.

The Vikings (7-0), who have won the Maryland Class B state title the past two years, took an 11-0 lead, with flashy point guard Justine Chaverini scoring six of her 11 points.

Largo (5-2), on a power move by 5-foot-11 senior forward Vanessa Blair (12 points) and a three-point shot by Toni Benjamin, narrowed the lead to 13-5.

But Mount Hebron broke loose for uncontested layups while Largo, with a shaky back court, couldn't handle the constant defensive pressure.

"I thought that if we played good defense that we could win because that is the core of our team," said senior forward Amy Mallon (12 points), who surpassed the 1,000-point mark for her career. "The three of us {Mount Hebron's three seniors} have never won this tournament in our previous years."

This year, though, Mount Hebron played intensely in beating solid teams. Monday night, the Vikings beat a good Friendly team, 56-42. Largo, like Friendly, had more size than Mount Hebron, but the Vikings' quickness and court savvy had more of an impact.

"We knew that we had to keep pressure on their guards and cut them down in the back court," said Chaverini, who had 10 first-half points. "They were bigger than us, so we knew that we had to use our quickness to our advantage."

Ahead at the half, 21-16, Mount Hebron dominated third-period play in stretching the lead to 36-20. Mallon scored six points in the quarter.

Largo, which upset Seton Monday, 46-36, on the power scoring of Blair, was timid when its leader went to the bench with 2:32 left in the third period with four fouls.

Blair returned to start the fourth period, but Mount Hebron -- with Chaverini, Alison McIntrye and Mallon scoring -- got eight straight points to make it 44-20 with 5:45 left.

"We have been in this tournament nine out of the 10 years I've been coaching here," said Mount Hebron Coach Dave Greenberg. "With some of the teams that were entered into the tournament back then, I thought it would be hard to win it, but it really is neat to be here and to win it."