FREDERICK, MD – In the midst of last Tuesday’s crosstown rivalry at Linganore High School, Oakdale boys’ basketball coach Brandon Long pulled down his facemask for a brief moment to project his demand that much louder.
“Ball pressure! Ball pressure!” the fourth-year coach told his team.
A fews seconds later, 2024 guard Evan Austin raced toward halfcourt to pick up the ball, thus inducing one of the handful of turnovers fueling Oakdale’s 11-0 run to start the game.
“I was so pleased with our guys intensity wise,” Long said afterward. “But once again, the issue is, we are – other than [2022 guards] Cameron Dorner and Alex Hawkins – we’re an extremely young team after the COVID-19 switch, as is everybody. But we have two guys that only have varsity experience.
“I’m not counting the six-game COVID-19 season prior. I’m counting legitimate playoff experience.”
Oakdale ultimately lost the contest, 48-43, and couldn’t quite support its defensive strength on offense.
The Bears did, however, employ a full, healthy lineup that’s well-suited athletically and defensively.
Dorner, a recent Shepherd University commitment at 16.9 points per game, and Hawkins – Frederick County’s second-leading scorer at 23.9 points per game – are all that remain from the Bears’ 2020 run to the state final four.
Austin is the team’s third-leading scorer at 10.6 points per game and this past weekend went on an official football recruiting visit to Penn State University.
At 6-foot-5, 2024 forward Dominic Nichols holds down the frontcourt and 2022 guard Cainan Schmidt accounted for both of the Bears’ 3-pointers vs. Linganore.
“I think we strapped up and played good defense,” Long said. “We just couldn't score for a long stretch there in the second half, and they did.”
More notes from around Frederick County:
- In addition to its five-point win over Oakdale, Linganore trounced Catoctin, 92-48, on Thursday to remain the winningest team in Frederick at 12-1 and 7-1 in the CMC Spires division.
2022 guard and Shippensburg University commit Timmy Conner (23.9 points per game) combined for 33 points and nine steals in both wins.
- Walkersville took down Tuscarora at home on Thursday, 63-57, in a battle of county frontrunners.
The Lions (12-3, 6-0 CMC Gabrill) received 18 points and 13 rebounds from 2023 guard Shaden Hansen and are 1.5 games ahead of Washington County’s Smithsburg atop the division.
2023 guard Latrell Mark led Tuscarora (8-3, 4-2 CMC Spires) with 16 points, five rebounds and five assists.
- Thomas Johnson (10-4, 5-4 CMC Spires) rolled to sizable wins versus South Hagerstown, 74-51, and Middletown, 82-31, last week.
Patriots’ 2022 guard Oscar Contreras is tied for third in the county scoring department at 20.7 points per game.
- Urbana rallied late in regulation and defeated Carroll County’s Liberty in overtime on Thursday, 77-73.
2025 guard R.J. Roche powered the Hawks (5-7, 2-6 CMC Spires) with 15 points.
- Outside the general flow of public schools, 2023 guard Dorian Tema scored 16 points on Wednesday for St. John’s Catholic Prep in a 65-56 defeat of Indian Creek.
SJCP (6-6, 4-3 MIAA B) has now won three of the last four league games, grasping sole possession of third in the MIAA B Conference behind only St. Mary’s (8-0) and St. Paul’s (6-3), teams the Vikings beat two weeks ago.
- Homeschool program, the Frederick Warriors, upended private school Frederick Christian Academy, 48-46, this weekend on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from 2022 guard David Switzer.
Warriors 2022 guard Caleb Passarelli has averaged nearly a triple-double season, posting 15.8 points, 14.5 rebounds and 8.5 assists per game.
FCA 2022 guard Nathan Bowes, a scorer of 17.2 points per game this season, is now 30 points away from scoring 1,000 in his high school career following a 15-point effort on Saturday.
- Maryland School for the Deaf defeated Brunswick on Monday, 60-49, and routed Baltimore County’s Perry Hall Christian Academy on Thursday, 82-55.
2023 guard Zion Ortiz (15 points per game) and 2022 guards Ethan Sheppeck (12.5 points per game) and Jaden Joseph (12.3 points per game) have stabilized the Orioles, now 14-2 overall, this season.
Games to watch this week
Tuesday at 7 p.m., Oakdale (9-4) vs. Tuscarora (8-3)
Tuesday at 7 p.m., Thomas Johnson (10-4) vs. Linganore (12-1)
Wednesday at 7 p.m., Walkersville (12-3) vs. Williamsport (10-2)
Friday at 7 p.m., Linganore (12-1) vs. Frederick (9-4)
Saturday at 3 p.m., St. John’s Catholic Prep (6-7) at Sandy Spring Friends (8-4)