By TIM KOELBLE
11:08 PM EST, November 23, 2012
It wasn’t exactly planned this way, but former St. Maria Goretti star Rodney Monroe will get to coach against his former team in tonight’s Mid-Atlantic Invitational Tournament.
However, it will be in the consolation game at 6:30 p.m. as SouthLake Christian Academy, an 88-76 loser to St. Mary’s Ryken on Friday, will go against the Gaels, a 63-51 loser to Bishop Walsh in Friday’s nightcap.
The star of the night was St. Mary’s Ryken’s Stan Kaya, who established an MAIT single-game scoring record with 41 points, breaking the old mark of 40 set by Anwar McQueen of St. Albans in 1993.
A senior, Kaya was making his Ryken debut and hit 16 of 21 from the floor and grabbed 13 rebounds. A native of the Congo, Kaya transferred from Arlington Country Day in Florida.
In the nightcap, St. Maria Goretti (1-1) started slowly and fell behind 20-12 after the first quarter and, after a ho-hum standoff, in the second quarter still trailed 27-19 at the half.
But the Gaels came out with a purpose in the third quarter and outscored the Spartans 22-10 in the third quarter.
The Gaels took their first lead of the night at 31-28 on a 3-pointer by Tyrus Fleetwood and led after three quarters, 41-37.
As the fourth quarter opened, the Gaels suddenly turned the rock over and Walsh made Goretti pay for the mistakes.
The Spartans (1-0) started with a 9-0 run to take a 46-41 lead halfway through the final quarter.
Martin Geben hit a but to narrow the gap to 46-43 but that was the closest the Gaels would get.
Bishop Walsh hit 17 of 19 free throws in the fourth quarter including nine in the last two minutes.
Goretti committed 12 of its 20 turnovers in the decisive fourth quarter.
“For the first game, I thought our kids showed a lot of poise and maturity,” said Walsh coach Bob Boyle.
Liam Rhodes led Bishop Walsh with 17 points, Hunter Marrale had 15 points and Quincy Redmon had 12 points and a team-high seven rebounds.
Geben led Goretti with 19 points and 11 rebounds, Isaiah Harris-Winn had 13 points and 10 rebounds and fleetwood had 12 points.
In the opener, St. Mary’s pulled away from SouthLake Christian in the middle of the third quarter after a see-saw first half that ended with Ryken holding a 38-36 lead at the break.
Kaya scored 15 points in the third quarter, including six in an 11-0 run that gave St. Mary’s a 55-41 lead with just over three minutes left.
SouthLake, down by as many as 18 points, fought back to within 80-72 with 1:57 remaining in the contest before the Knights finished off the game at the foul line.
Sophomore guard Reggie Parker backed Kaya with a 27-point performance, which included 15-for-15 at the foul line. St. Mary’s Ryken hit 28 of 35 free throws compared to 9 of 11 for SouthLake.
SouthLake showed its shooting ability from 3-point range with 15 connections, including 5 by Bruce Dixon, SouthLake’s leading scorer with 17 points. Ralph McCollum and Hayden Goins had 16 each.
NOTES: Among those in the crowd from the college ranks in scouting capacities were Phil Martelli, head coach at Saint Joseph’s in Philadelphia, and Paul Hewitt, head coach at George Mason University.
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