After a huge win against one of Northern California's top teams, the Galena High boys basketball team will jump right back into the fire.
Galena held on for a 68-62 win over Modesto Christian on Thursday at home in the George Maldonado Classic. The Grizzlies set up a showdown with defending NIAA 4A State champion Bishop Gorman at 8 p.m. today at Galena. Gorman beat Santa Rita, Ariz., 88-54 on Thursday.
In Modesto, Galena beat a team that's ranked No. 3 on the West Coast and features three players who are going to Division I schools. Modesto Christian is arguably one of the top two teams in Northern California along with De La Salle.
Luke Babbitt had 37 points and 17 rebounds, but Galena coach Tom Maurer stressed that there were many others who played just as important roles.
"These kids all contributed big-time," said Maurer about his entire team. "Definitely not a one-man show. It was just a great, great effort."
Galena jumped out to a 14-5 lead after one quarter and led 20-5 early in the second period. Modesto closed to within 33-25 in the first half, but then Mikey Bordigioni hit his only basket of the game to give Galena a 35-25 halftime lead.
The Grizzlies went on to build a 20-point lead in the third quarter and was able to hold off Modesto. "We've got a lot of room for improvement," said Maurer, commenting on how Modesto was able to come back.
Galena was able to hold Modesto 30 points below its previous low total of 92 points for the season and it was only the second time this year Modesto was held under 100 points.
Eric Maupin scored 14 points and Brice Crook added eight points for Galena. "Maupin had a great first half," Maurer said. "Brice Crook hit some key shots."
Maurer also praised the play of J.D. Peters and Justin Norvick at point guard and the play of his bench.
Babbitt came into the game average 4.4 rebounds and Maurer said he challenged him to improve his effort on the boards. "That's phenomenal," said Maurer about Babbitt's 17 rebounds.
"I thought we rebounded really well," Galena assistant coach Matt Kromberg said. "I thought everybody played their roles."
Adrian Oliver, who many project to be Washington's starting point guard next year, scored 19 points, Michael Porter, who's heading to Kentucky, scored 12 points, and Luiz Detoledo, who's heading to BYU, added 12 points for Modesto.
DOUGLAS 74, OAKLAND TECH 65
Keith Olson had a big game, scoring 25 points to help lead Douglas to a win over the Bay Area school in the Maldonado event. The Tigers built a 61-46 lead after three quarters.
Jeff Nady scored 14 points, Jordan Hadlock had 12 points and Michael Gransberry added 10 points for Douglas.