Goode, Masters spark Spalding in 91-69 romp over Long Reach Cavaliers settle down after early case of nerves to coast in home opener

December 10, 1997|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

No. 13-ranked Archbishop Spalding is making a quantum leap this season. And as last night's 91-69 boys basketball victory over Long Reach attests, that leap is almost certain to be a successful one.

Bolstered by 7-foot City transfer Derrick Goode, and 6-3 Mount St. Joe transfer Chris Masters, both juniors, the Cavaliers (2-1) jumped from the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association's C Conference to the A Conference.

Already, they have played competitively with the No. 1-ranked team in the nation -- St. John's Prospect Hall.

Goode (29 points) and Masters (22 points) proved to be the difference against Long Reach, a team that defeated Spalding at the buzzer a year ago and returned its entire lineup.

The No. 17-ranked Lightning (1-1), whose tallest player is 6-1, was missing two of its top six players last night because of injuries.

The 295-pound Goode, enjoying his best scoring night ever, used his height advantage to pump in 15 points. He shot 7-for-7 at the free-throw line in the first half.

All the while, Masters was hurting Long Reach on baseline drives.

"I was a little anxious, but the team showed confidence in me and gave me the ball," Goode said. "They [Long Reach] kept getting offensive rebounds even though they were small, and I have to do a better job."

The Lightning, led by Turon Kosh (18 points, Chris Smith (16 points) and Devin Conwell (12 points), used its quickness, tenacity and athletic ability to stay within striking distance in the first half. Spalding led 32-24 before scoring six straight points in the final 52 seconds of the half.

"Not to take anything away from Long Reach, but we didn't play as well as we could," Cavaliers coach Tony Martin said. "It was our first home game, and we showed some nerves. We missed a boatload of layups."

Long Reach, with Spalding ahead 25-20, missed five straight free throws, two layups and lost a basket on a charge until Goode's three-point play sent Spalding in front, 28-20, with 2: 21 left in the second quarter.

The Lightning, which shot 2-for-9 at the line in the first half, never got closer than eight points again.

"We made nice runs a couple of times, and my kids gave 150 percent," Long Reach coach Al Moraz said. "They have three or four Division I players and this could have been a 40-point game in a heartbeat.

"It sounds strange to say we played well and still lost by 22 points."

Pub Date: 12/10/97

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