Maurys Jack Baker Gets Career Win 600

longtime Maury Head Basketball Coach Jack
Baker, it was simply another critical Eastern District game on Friday night
against the Churchland Truckers that his team needed to win to stay atop the
league standings.  However, to others and
to the 58-year-old Baker later on when he has time to reflect, the game was
more than that as the 71-55 victory over Churchland gave him win #600 in his
illustrious career.


a special presentation was made to Baker for the 600th win where he
was presented the game ball, and got a chance to celebrate it with his players,
wife, mother and three-year-old twins among


obviously will mean more to me after this season's over, but right now I'm just
concerned about us getting better.  We've
had some up and down games, and I think we're starting to gel a little bit
hopefully.  Really when it's all said and
done, 600 is a number.  I know it's a big
number, but it's still just a number right now," said Baker, who's in his 34th
season as Maury's Head Basketball Coach and became only the sixth man in VHSL history to reach 600 wins on the hardwood.


asked me earlier, what did you feel like today and I said I was worried about
our matchup with Churchland because they're small and quick, and they had
beaten us seven times in a row.  All my
concern was with them."


And that
concern rightfully so since Truckers point guard
normal'>Terrell Diggs was coming off a triple-double in his previous game
vs. Norview.  Diggs entered averaging
18.6 points, 8.8 assists and 7.5 steals per game.


half-time, Maury led by a score of 30-23, despite shooting 0-for-6 from the
foul line and knowing that the Truckers were able to overcome a 16-point
deficit in the district playoffs vs. the Commodores a year ago to end their


by 13 early in the third quarter, Maury was able to push the lead to as much as
22 thanks in large part to four three-pointers, three in the third period
alone, by Kevin Buchanan.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  The dribble penetration by junior guard
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Frazier, who finished a rebound shy of
a triple-double with 15 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds, opened up some of
those looks from the outside for Buchanan.


"He can
shoot it," Baker said of Buchanan.  "One
of our problems early on was we couldn't put the ball in the hole.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  We shot 30% against Ocean Lakes and 32%
against First Colonial, and he just wasn't shooting the ball.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  When he shoots it that gives us another


It was a
typical Baker team game on Friday with five Commodores scoring in
double-figures and Maury shooting 10-of-12 from the field in the third quarter
to put distance between them and Churchland. 
Defensively, they held Diggs to 1-of-10 shooting in the first half, 9-of-28
for the game and even though he got a game-high 24 points, they didn't let him
take over like he did last February in the district tournament.


thought Sim beside his offensive numbers did a pretty
good job on Diggs," Baker agreed.  "He
got to the hole a few times, but for the most part I thought we did a pretty
good job, and I thought Jamal [
normal'> and Buchanan did a pretty good job on [
normal'>Devin] Patterson and [


Head Coach Pat Dulin
in his second season with the Truckers noted that Baker has 567 more wins
than he does, though for the time being, he'll enjoy the 3-1 record he has against
the living legend.


"It was
definitely his night.  My dad used to
take me as a kid and watch his teams play. 
I'm big on local history, and it's an honor to be on the court with him
for his win," said Dulin.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  "Did I want it to happen tonight?
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  No.  I
would've rather it happen at the Scope on Tuesday.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  That said, Jack's a great guy, he's a class
act and he's the way High School Basketball should be.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  He told me tonight he's been around 35 years
and I'm only 31, so he's been coaching longer than I've been alive.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  Hopefully one day it'll be me there."


was impressed with how Maury's front-court players,
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Williamson and
normal'> Leary, ran the floor and controlled the boards.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  Maury had a 43-24 rebounding advantage, 20
boards by that inside tandem, and he also felt Ferguson and Frazier did a nice
job setting the tempo and keeping Churchland from getting its transition game.


"Our game
is we attack the basket, drive and dish, and we were settling for the jump shot
most of the first half and we took a lot since we were down in the second
half.  When you're our size, you can't
settle for the jump shot unless you're going to make them.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  We didn't get up and down the court like we
usually do.  Maury did an excellent job
of getting back on defense and getting out in transition."



One of
the happiest players for Baker's 600th career win was Frazier, a
three-year starter at the guard spot.  Frazier
said Baker has meant as much to him off the court as he has on it during that time frame. 


Baker's always enthusiastic.  I've been
with him for three years, he's never told me anything wrong and I love him to
death.  I've learn from him to stay
positive, be a leader and that will get you through life.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  He takes care of you, and he's like another
father figure.  Anything I need, Coach
Baker has," Frazier said, adding that Baker likes 4-0 more than 600.


"To be
honest with you, I think he's happier to be 4-0 in the district.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'> That's just Coach Baker and how he is."


At 5-3
overall, Maury has proven to play with the elite, beating Booker T. Washington
by 22 and winning at home against a Norcom team that earlier this season beat
defending State Champion King's Fork. 
The Commodores lost out-of-district games to First Colonial and Ocean
Lakes from the Beach District, two teams that did not make the regional playoffs
last season and were expected to be middle of the pack finishers in the


we're somewhat experienced, we've got a lot of young kids, too.
style='mso-spacerun:yes'>  We haven't reached a level where we come
ready to play every night.  That's
nothing against Ocean Lakes or First Colonial because they simply outplayed
us," Baker stated.  "But if we get to
that level where we're ready to go every night, I think we've got a pretty good
chance to be a real good basketball team."



Maury doesn't have many seniors on the roster, they do have an experienced Head
Coach, one now with 600 career victories. 
And counting . . .





href="">Postgame Audio with
Maury Coach Jack Baker After Career Win #600








style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Maury 71:

Verdana'> Frazier - 15Pts. 7-11FG, 9Reb. 11Ast. 2Stl.

Verdana'> Leary - 15Pts. 5-6FG, 5-9FT, 12Reb. 5Blk.

style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Kevin Buchanan - 14Pts. 5-6FG, 4-4
3's, 3Reb.

style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Jamal Ferguson - 13Pts. 7-11FG,

Verdana'> Williamson - 12Pts. 6-6FG, 8Reb. 4Blk.



style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Churchland 55:

style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Terrell Diggs - 24Pts. 9-28FG,
2-11 3's, 3-4FT, 5Reb. 5Ast. 4Stl.

style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Devin Patterson - 12Pts. 6-15FG,
5Ast. 3Stl.

style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Verdana'>Chris Brooks - 10Pts. 9Reb.
Verdana'> 3Stl.




Matthew Hatfield has covered Eastern Region Basketball
& Football since 2004 for - the #1 High School Sports
Site on the Rivals Network.  Check out Hatfield's website -
href=""> - for more
on the pro and college sports scene.  To contact Matthew, please e-mail
href="">, and
catch him every Saturday during High School Sports Talk on
href="">ESPN Radio 94.1.