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Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Making the big score

By Jeff Merron
Page 2

Wilt's No. 1. Kobe's No. 2. But remember: The NBA might be the best league, but it isn't the only league. So consider these other high-scoring hoopsters -- most of whom rang up big numbers in just 32 or 40 minutes.

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Bevo Francis
Maybe the only college player in history who racked up single-game scoring totals higher than the enrollment at his college. Playing for Rio Grande College in Ohio, he torched Hillsdale College for 113 points on Feb. 2, 1954. That counted as a college record, but it was only his second-highest college total. About a year earlier, on Jan. 9, 1953, he scored 116 against Ashland (Kent.), but Ashland's JC status kept 116 off the NCAA books. Who knows what he would have done if he had stuck around for his junior and senior seasons, instead of signing with the Boston Whirlwinds, bait for the Harlem Globetrotters.

John Barber
Does anyone have this on film? Barber's Los Angeles State team beat the Chapman College JV squad 206-82 in a 1953 contest. Barber tallied 188 points. The next day, he scored 103 against Los Angeles Community College's JV. The day after that, he connected on 73 of 97 field goals and totaled 150 points against a team of L.A. scribes.

Barber's coach, Sax Elliot, was trying to make a point -- no pun intended. He argued that Bevo Francis' records shouldn't count, because it was easy for the Rio Grande star to put up astounding numbers against junior colleges. And he said he would prove it, by camping his big man under the hoop and letting him shoot away. Until 1957, the lane was only six feet wide, which helped.

Walter Garrett
Back in 1963, the Birmingham West End prep star scored 97 points against Birmingham Glenn Vocational. Final game score: West End 97, Glenn Vocational 54. And dig this -- Garrett was quintuple-teamed the entire game.

Cheryl Miller
On Jan. 26, 1982, Miller made 46 of 50 field goals on the way to 105 points. Her Riverside Poly (Calif.) squad defeated Riverside Norte Vista, 179-15.

Danny Heater
When Heater got hot, other teams had to watch out. On Jan. 26, 1960, playing on his undersized (73-foot) home court, the Burnsville, W.Va., star scored 55 first-half points, then really got going after the intermission, pouring in another 80. Total: a high school-record 135 points. Heater later worked for the FBI -- and averaged 20 points per game for his league squad.

Wilt Chamberlain
The century mark is legendary. But it might not have surprised some of his Philly high school teammates and opponents. Playing for Overbrook High in 1955, he scored 90 against Roxborough -- despite sitting out some of the third quarter and all of the fourth.

Frank Selvy
Wilt wasn't the first one to perfectly hit the century mark. Selvy, playing for Furman, shattered the old NCAA single-game mark by 27 points when he scored 100 against Newberry College on Feb. 13, 1954. During the game, played, appropriately enough, on "Frank Selvy Night," he went 41 of 66 from the field and 18 of 22 from the stripe.

Lisa Leslie
Lisa Leslie didn't quite equal Cheryl Miller's mark -- but 101 points in a half isn't too shabby.
Lisa Leslie
In Leslie's last home game as an Inglewood (Calif.) HS senior in February 1990, she went 37-for-56 from the floor and sank 27 free throws. Then the first half ended, with her team leading South Torrance, 102-24. She had scored 101 points. The game was over -- literally. South Torrance didn't come out for the second half.

Mary Boyd
We're not sure, but it's possible the game was played in a cage, which would keep the ball from going out of bounds and may have helped Boyd rack up 156 points (only 2 on free throws) in a 1924 game for Lonaconing (Md.) Central High in its 163-3 pasting of Ursuline Academy. Nor do we know whether she was playing under girls' rules and spending all her time at the offensive end.

Dajuan Wagner
The ex-Cav pumped home 100 for Camden (N.J.) High School on Jan. 16, 2001, as his team beat Gloucester Township Tech, 157-67. Camden coach Glen Jackson was widely criticized for employing a full-court press throughout the rout and allowing his senior superstar to attempt to hit the century mark by playing in the fourth quarter.

Cedrick Hensley
The same night Wagner scored 100, Hensley, a junior, pumped home 101 for Heritage Christian Academy in Texas City, Texas. In the process, he became the 12th schoolboy to top the century mark. (Wagner was No. 13, and two more players have accomplished the feat since.) Wagner's squad beat Banff Christian 178-28. Hensley was gunning for 100, but it looked like he would come up short. He had "only" 83 points with three minutes left and was battling exhaustion. But he managed to score 18 more points, not missing a shot the rest of the way.

Among the sources for this list was "Basketball's Most Wanted," by Floyd Conner. The New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today and other newspapers were used in gathering details.