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Maryland-bound center scores 13; Spalding hands Eagles 1st league loss, 57-48 By Pat O'Malley Sun Staff Originally published January 11, 2003 Archbishop Spalding coach Mike Glick lit a fire under Will Bowers and the 7-footer took care of the inside while sharpshooter Tim Brackney lit up the outside as the host Cavaliers dealt McDonogh its first league loss, 57-48, in Severn last night. Bowers didn't start for the first time since his sophomore year. "It was a wakeup call because I've been playing bad lately and my coach hasn't liked my attitude," he said. Bowers scored a team-high 13 points off the bench, had eight rebounds and three blocks. Brackney hit three three-pointers and had 12 points and Jesse Brooks chipped in 11. No. 9 McDonogh (12-2) was led by Mike Popoko's 16 points, but never got in sync offensively and was out-rebounded 24-14. "We were a little bit impatient," said McDonogh coach Matt MacMullan. "We were behind most of the game and I think our kids tried to force the tempo." The Eagles fell to 5-1 in the combined Baltimore Catholic League and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference, leaving fifth-ranked St. Frances (11-1, 3-0) as the league's only unbeaten team. With the win, No. 5 Spalding (11-3) is tied for third at 5-2. Bowers learned Thursday that he wasn't going to start and responded with a big first half, scoring 12 points. "Yeah, I really felt I had something to prove," said Bowers, who sat the first five minutes. Spalding's three-guard offense of Brooks, Brackney and Matt Latonick was very effective in thwarting McDonogh's comeback after the Cavaliers jumped out to a 32-21 halftime lead. The Eagles got within three points twice late in the third period. But Rudy Gay from the corner, Gus Durr inside and a Brackney three pushed the Cavaliers' lead back up to 51-39 early in the final period. In the second half, Bowers, who is headed to Maryland on a scholarship, scored only one point from the foul line, but despite four fouls grabbed five of his eight rebounds. "We tried to send a message to Will and he responded like a man," Glick said. "We're trying to get Will ready to play at Maryland and at that level you have to be ready to play every time you step on the court." Copyright © 2003, The Baltimore Sun
Seven-footer scores 13 off the bench to key 57-48 victory 01/11/2003 It was the marquee match-up on last night’s MIAA schedule, but at the outset the A Conference showdown between #5 Archbishop Spalding and #9 McDonogh was missing one of its biggest stars. In a effort to send a message to his struggling center, Spalding head coach Mike Glick did not start 7’-0” Will Bowers, who his headed to the University of Maryland on a basketball scholarship, for a second consecutive game and the big guy got the message loud and clear. Bowers came off the bench to score 13-points, grab eight-rebounds and block three shots to lead the Cavaliers to an important, 57-48, win over the visiting Eagles. Despite Bowers early absence, Spalding (11-3, 4-2 in the A Conference) got out of the gate fast with an effective three-guard attack. Then Bowers, who entered the contest five-minutes in, hit the court with vengeance, scoring 12-points before intermission to help Spalding forge a 32-21 halftime lead. In the third quarter, McDonogh (12-2, 4-1) battled to within three on two different occasions, but the Cavs responded each time with some clutch outside shooting. Guards Tim Brackney, who hit three three-pointers, and Jesse Brooks led this effort with 11-points each. Another key for Spalding was its domination on the glass, as it out-rebeounded McDonogh, 24-14. McDonogh’s Mike Popoko led all scorers with 16-points.
Eight three-pointers from Gibbons are not enough to erase early deficit 01/04/2003 In a switch from the usual low-scoring defensive battles played in the MIAA A Conference, #4 Archbishop Spalding held back a late rally by #14 Cardinal Gibbons, in an up-tempo offensive battle, to a claim an 84-80 victory, last night at Gibbons. Jesse Brooks, a junior point guard, had a huge game for the Cavaliers, scoring 20-points, including nine in the final two minutes to hold off the Gibbons charge, and dishing out 10 assists. Fellow junior Rudy Gay also had another big night for Spalding, scoring a game-high 21-points. In many respects this was a tale of two completely different games. Spalding dominated for much of the first half and built a commanding 39-17 lead with less than three minutes remaining in the second quarter. Gibbons, however, ignited at this point and went on a 12-3 run to close the half, shaving the Spalding lead to 42-29. In the second half, the Crusader offense continued to fire on all cylinders, shooting 55-percent from the field and putting up 51-points, as five players reached double figures in scoring. Spalding (9-2, 2-1 in the A Conference) also continue to score at a higher than normal rate, but its lead gradually shrunk as the Crusaders, who sank eight three-point field goals, kept coming in waves. In the frantic final two minutes, Brooks single-handedly held off the final Gibbons charge, but not before the Crusaders had pulled within 82-80 with just three-seconds left in the game. From there, Tim Brackney converted two free-throw attempts to finally seal the win for the Cavaliers. Glenn Nelson, who came off the bench, and Brett Foelber led the Gibbons scoring attack with 15-points each. Adding to the fire-power were Brahn Jenkins, 13-points, and Leo Williams and Pat Grace, who scored 12-points each. Spalding, which finished second at the prestigious Slam Dunk to the Beach Tournament in Lewes, Delaware last weekend, got off to great start behind the play of 7’-0” center Will Bowers. Bowers scored 11-points and blocked six shots, as the Cavaliers built a 22-point lead in the first half. However, as was the case in Spalding’s loss two weeks ago at Mount St. Joseph, Bowers missed much of the second half with foul trouble and eventually fouled out with just 1:23 remaining in the contest. Both squads now move on to difficult road encounters tomorrow in a conference that appears to be growing deeper by the week. Spalding will be at #7 St. Frances, which now shares the league lead with McDonogh (both are 2-0 in the conference) and Gibbons (8-4, 1-3) will travel to McDonogh to face the #9 Eagles. The Spalding-St. Frances game tips at 3:00 pm and the Gibbons-McDonogh contest will get underway at 3:30 pm.
Crusaders nearly erase 22-point, first-half deficit By Pat O'Malley Sun Staff Originally published January 4, 2003 Archbishop Spalding did not leave its game at the beach in Lewes, Del The No. 4 Cavaliers escaped No. 14 Cardinal Gibbons last night with an 84-80 victory in the combined Baltimore Catholic League/Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference game at Gibbons. Winning coach Mike Glick, whose team shot 59 percent for the game (32 of 54), said it was "one of the weirdest games" he had ever been involved in. Junior point guard Jesse Brooks, who had a game-high 10 assists, scored 11 of his 20 points in the final period, nine in the final 1:35, to save the Cavaliers. Rudy Gay, who had a game-high 21 points for the victors to go with five assists, six rebounds and three blocked shots, said the Cavaliers "are not a good second-half team right now." Spalding had a 39-17 lead with just under three minutes remaining in the first half. The Crusaders (8-4, 1-3) outscored them 63-45 the rest of the way, mainly by shooting 55 percent (17-for-31) in the second half, and got within 82-80 with three seconds left in the game. Gibbons shot 50 percent (27-for-54) for the game, with eight three-point baskets, and placed four starters in double figures, plus Glenn Nelson, who came off the bench to score 15. Brett Foelber tied Nelson for team honors with 15 points, followed by Brahn Jenkins (13) and 12 each from Leon Williams and sophomore Pat Grace. Tim Brackney's pair of free throws with 1.9 seconds remaining iced it for Spalding. "We got kind of helter skelter there in the last period, turning the ball over, but we kept our composure at the end, " said Brooks. "Our offense wasn't working, so I had to step it up." Spalding (9-2) came into the game after finishing runner-up in the prestigious Slam Dunk to the Beach National Invitational. With 7-foot Will Bowers dominating in the post, the Cavaliers, who are 3-1 in the league, built a 19-5 first-period lead into 22-point advantages twice in the second period. Bowers had all 11 of his points in the first half, along with five of his six rebounds and six of his eight blocked shots before getting into foul trouble. Bowers sat part of the third and fourth periods before leaving after his fifth foul with 1:23 remaining. Coach Bob Flynn said after his Crusaders won their own O. Ray Mullis Classic during the holidays that he believed his team had made great strides in raising its level of play. "We're a little bit deeper than we have been, and Kenny Hasbrook has made us a different kind of team, a tough team to guard," said Flynn. Copyright © 2003, The Baltimore Sun
Boys basketball: Last night's Slam Dunk to the Beach final came down to the closing 12 seconds, but 7-footer Will Bowers missed two tip tries and Rudy Gay a short jumper in Archbishop Spalding's 49-48 loss to unbeaten St. Benedict's (N.J.) at Cape Henlopen High in the title game of the Slam Dunk to the Beach. After St. Benedict's then failed on a free throw with three seconds left, the 6-7 Gay rebounded and took a full-court heave that was off-target at the buzzer. The decisive sequence began when Spalding's Matt Latonick missed a free throw after being fouled on a 3-point try with his team down 49-47. Latonick was errant on his first try, but then canned a second to pull the Cavs within a point. With the game on the line, Spalding's two biggest stars took their shots at winning for the third straight time at Slam Dunk. Arundel County's top-ranked team just missed on its opportunity to win its portion of a tournament that was a who's who of national-level prep prospects with upper Division I and National Basketball Association aspirations. Spalding won twice last week to make the championship match. "I couldn't be prouder of the way we played tonight and the way we represented ourselves and Anne Arundel County," said Spalding coach Mike Glick, whose team dropped to 8-2 heading into Friday's game at Cardinal Gibbons. "This tournament has brought our team together and we're now fully prepared to get on with the rest of our season." Gay was outstanding in the first half, scoring 10 of his game-high 20 points as Spalding built a 33-25 lead over a team that included at least three upper-Division I recruits. Bowers added eight of his 11 points in the first 16 minutes. St. Benedict's (6-0) pulled within 44-41 heading into what was a tense fourth quarter battle. St. Benedict's 6-foot-4 guard Artie Bowers (10 points) is committed to Massachusetts, while back-court mate J.R. Smith (13 points) has an offer from North Carolina. Stanley Branch, a 6-8 center, added 13 points. Spalding's Dave Douglas proved to be a defensive stopper on Smith in a box and one setup that kept him under wraps for much of the game. "Once we put Dave on J.R. Smith, he barely got anything at all," Glick said. Bowers finished with 10 rebounds, and Gay grabbed nine. Jesse Brooks made five assists and scored five points. Spalding (8-2) 1419114--48 St. Benedict's (6-0) 1213168--49 Spalding (48)Gay 8(1) 3-4 20, Bowers 4 3-6 11, Durr 2 0-0 4, Douglas 1 2-4 4, Brooks 2(1) 0-0 5, Latonick 1(1) 1-3 4. TOTALS: 18(3) 9-17 48.St. Benedict's (49)Bowers 4 2-3 10, Mason 2(1) 0-0 5, Galindo 2 4-6 8, Smith 5(2) 1-1 13, Branch 5 3-5 13. TOTALS: 18(3) 10-16 49. Published December 31, 2002, The Capital, Annapolis, Md. Copyright © 2003 The Capital, Annapolis, Md.