By Ted Waddell
WALTON January 1, 2008 A recipe for a rough day of basketball: three of your starters don’t show up and a couple more players skip the bus.
In Thursday’s opening round of the 2007 Walton Warriors Holiday Tournament, the Gladiators of Goshen routed the Sullivan West Bulldogs, 61-40.
SW Coach Cliff Kelly noted that his team wasn’t able to mount a strong effort as three key players “decided to take vacation and not come to practice, and a couple of kids didn’t get on the bus today.”
The Gladiators dominated the Bulldogs in the first three quarters by outscoring them 17-4, 21-12 and 16-12, respectively.
In the final period, however, Goshen Coach Joe Guarneiri sent in the substitutes and SW (2-3) outpaced the opposition, 12-7.
Absent from the SW side of the scorebook were Dan Figueroa, Harold Smith, James Spruill and Chris Story.
SW’s Brad Reimer scored a game-high 20 points.
Three players reached double figures for Goshen (3-3). Willie Green led the way with 15 points, while Mike DeMatteo and Nick Skelly each netted 10 points.
SW held a slight advantage at the free-throw line. The Bulldogs converted 9-of-14 (64 percent) of their foul shots, while the Gladiators went 4-of-8 (50 percent).
“We played well, very cohesively today, and defensively did a nice job,” Guarneiri said. “We kept people in front of us, we did a nice job on the boards and offensively we ran our stuff as well as we’ve run it all year.”
“Our starters did very well and the kids coming off the bench maintained the tempo of the game,” he added.
Kelly stated that the Bulldogs were “a little bit down” due to the absence of those four key players.
“Goshen is a good team, they shot the eyes out of the basket and are very athletic… we missed our open looks,” he said.
“That’s the way it goes,” Kelly added.