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Preps

Mustangs cool off after a fast start

CLASS A, DISTRICT 11: Admiral Farragut sinks Northside Christian's hopes of capturing another championship.

By ERIC MUSKATEVC

© St. Petersburg Times, published February 23, 2003


ST.PETERSBURG -- Northside Christian shot the lights out in the first quarter, but not the rest of the way Saturday.

The Mustangs failed to capitalize on the opportunity to capture their third straight championship, losing at home to Admiral Farragut 86-52.

Northside (24-7) opened the night by connecting on 5 of 6 three-pointers and competing with the top-seeded Blue Jackets (29-2).

The Mustangs owned a 19-16 first-quarter lead, but Farragut took control before halftime, 35-31, and really woke up in the third.

Allowing just six Northside points while pouring ing 26 in the quarter, the Jackets clinched coach Michael Wells' second title and the program's third.

"That was our best quarter of the year," Wells said. "Our ball movement was great. We were constantly looking for the open man."

Point guard John Whitehead found the Blue Jackets, finishing with seven assists. And when he kept the ball, he knew what to do with it, racking up a team-high 20 points -- 12 in the opening half.

"He has an enormous amount of energy," Wells said. "I expect for John to do that every night."

Admiral Farragut dictated the game on the offensive glass, outrebounding Northside 38-11. Tommy Lampley recorded 17 points and 10 rebounds.

Lance Skipper produced a game-high 21 points, and Christian Boyle finished with 16. Skipper and Boyle made four three-pointers for the Mustangs, who ended up with nine.

"What killed us all night was that we did not rebound," Northside coach Chip McAllister said. "But I can't be disappointed. This team has over-achieved all year."

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