Spalding suddenly close to another title shot

Notebook

October 31, 2007|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,[Sun reporter]

What a difference a win makes, especially when it is a big win like Archbishop Spalding's 21-19 victory over St. Mary's in a driving rain last Friday at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis.

Suddenly, the two-time defending Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference champions are right in line for a berth in the conference final Nov. 16 at Towson University's Johnny Unitas Stadium.

It was nearly two weeks ago that the Cavaliers dropped a 26-25 decision to St. Paul's, leaving the Crusaders and St. Mary's as the front-runners for the title game.

The situation got even bleaker for the Cavaliers on Friday, when they trailed St. Mary's 13-0 going into the last quarter.

But the Cavaliers scored all of their points in the last 12 minutes. Going into this weekend, Spalding, St. Paul's and St. Mary's are each 5-1 in the conference.

The Cavaliers (5-3 overall) control their fate, thanks to their comeback against the Saints (5-3).

"It was a gut-check time in horrible weather," Spalding coach Mike Whittles said. "I'm just so proud of the way our kids responded in that second half to be down 13-0 to a very good football team. And St. Mary's scored with 44 seconds left after we took the lead at 21-13, but [defensive lineman] Jimmy Thomas tackled Dontra Peters for a 2-yard loss on their attempt for the two-point conversion."

Spalding can clinch a berth in the final by winning its last two games - Friday at Boys' Latin (4-4, 4-2) and Nov. 9 at home against St. Vincent Pallotti (1-7, 0-6).

Clinic at Glen Burnie

Glen Burnie boys basketball coach Mike Rudd is holding a free coaches clinic open to all boys and girls coaches from youth basketball to high school.

Featured speakers at the 9 a.m.-to-11 a.m. clinic at Glen Burnie are former DeMatha coach Morgan Wootten, who has the most wins of any coach in state history; his son Joe Wootten, coach at Bishop O'Connell in Arlington, Va; and Rudd. For information, call Rudd at 410-761-8950.

Quick hits

Arundel seniors Ayanna Randoph and Kiersten Jauschnegg have committed to colleges. Randolph has a full basketball scholarship to Furman, and Jauschnegg has received an appointment to the Naval Academy, where she will play lacrosse. ... Archbishop Spalding girls soccer goalie Karen Blocker recorded her 15th shutout and school-record 55th of her four-year career in a 2-0 win over Tuscarora on Oct. 23. ... Severn's football team (3-5) got its first MIAA B Conference win Friday over Pallotti, 6-3, as Taylor Burns scored on a 28-yard run and linebacker Mark Staines had 14 tackles and blocked a potential game-tying field goal in the final minute.

pat.omalley@baltsun.com

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