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GC men, women both win big

By DUSTIN KENT

November 27. 2015 9:44PM

 

PANAMA CITY — Gulf Coast coach Jay Powell hadn’t been very happy with his team’s defensive performance during its recent stretch of play that featured three losses in four outings. So the Commodores’ effort in Friday’s game with Albany Tech was just what he was looking for.

 

The Commodores (6-4) cruised to a 67-45 win on the opening night of the Gulf Coast Thanksgiving Classic, using a balanced offensive attack and a suffocating defense that made their coach very happy.

 

“I thought our defensive intensity was by far the best it has been all season,” Powell said. “The men got down in a stance and worked hard and did a nice job contesting shots and keeping people in front. We’re going to have to do that if we’re going to be good all season long.”

 

Cobe Goosby led the Commodores with 18 points, followed by Van Johnson with 12, Khaliel Spearman with 11, and Jeremy Harris with 10.

 

Gulf Coast was without its top post player Davaris McGowens, who was out due to illness, but the Commodores took advantage of their quickness and versatility with the smaller lineup. They started with the 6-foot-6 forward Harris at center instead of a more traditional post player such as 6-8 Rodney Ross or 6-11 Johnny Williams.

 

“We actually thought that was what might happen,” Powell said. “We’ve practiced playing some five-out (offense) this year. At times we had some bad shot selection, but other times it opened up some penetration lanes, so that will be kind of a work in progress.

 

“I don’t know if we’ll need to or want to use (the small lineup) throughout the season, but for this game I felt like we needed to have it.”

 

The Commodores got off to a fast start, with Spearman scoring on a putback and a 3-pointer and Goosby adding two buckets to make it 9-2 four minutes into the game.

 

Albany Tech closed to within five at 13-8, but Harris started an 8-2 run with a pair of free throws and finished it with a transition layup to make it 21-10.

 

A three-point play by Johnson, a reverse layup by Harris, and a baseline drive by Goosby extended the lead to 30-13 with 2:30 to halftime.

 

It was 34-17 at the break and the Commodores quickly built on the lead early in the second half. A short jumper by Donovan Franklin, a three-point play by Goosby, a driving finish by Goosby, and a bucket inside by Ross off a feed by

Franklin made it 43-19 with 15:22 remaining.

 

The Commodores continued to pour it on with a 14-3 run featuring five more points from Goosby, a 3 from Marshall Griffith, and baskets from Harris, Spearman, and Ross to extend the margin to 30 points with 4:07 to play.

Gulf Coast will play Saturday at 6 p.m. against Walters State (7-3), while Albany Tech (3-4) will face Polk State (7-3) at 2 p.m.

 

ALBANY TECH (45)

Johnson 3 0-0 8, Graham 0 0-0 0, Clarkson 1 0-0 2, McCoy 3 0-4 7, Fluellen 2 0-1 4, Watson 2 0-1 4, Sisroe 5 0-0 11, Clemons 1 3-4 6, Kelly 1 1-1 3, Hicks 0 0-0 0. Totals: 18 4-11 45.

 

GULF COAST (67)

DeSouza 0 0-0 0, Goosby 7 4-4 18, Harris 3 4-4 10, Franklin 2 1-2 5, Ross 3 0-0 6, Spearman 5 0-0 11, Johnson 4 4-6 12, Griffith 1 0-0 3, Weathers 1 0-0 2. Totals: 26 13-16 67.

Halftime score: Gulf Coast 34, Baker 17. 3-point field goals: Albany Tech 5 (Johnson 2, McCoy, Sisroe, Clemons), Gulf Coast 2 (Griffith, Spearman). Total fouls: Albany Tech 20, Gulf Coast 11. Fouled out: none. Technical fouls: none.

 

GC women 110, Albany Tech 37

 

The Gulf Coast women made easy work of the Lady Titans 110-37 on Friday in the Gulf Coast Thanksgiving Classic to improve to 8-0 on the season. The Lady Commodores exploded to a 24-4 lead in the first quarter and never were seriously threatened.

 

Raven Fox led Gulf Coast with 25 points and made four 3-pointers, followed by Maria Morales Castro with 20 points, Shaterrika O’Neal with 18, Kristina King 12, Amanda Paschal 10, and Audrey-Ann Goudreau eight. Alicia Gertman led Albany Tech (1-5) with 19.

 

It was the third time this season that the Lady Commodores topped the century mark in a game, with the 110 points besting the previous season-high of 105 set against LSU-Eunice on Nov. 15. They also set a season-high with 14 made 3-pointers.

 

The Lady Commodores led 54-23 at halftime and started the second half on a 22-2 run to build a 51-point lead in the third quarter.

 

Gulf Coast will take on Eastern Florida State (5-2) Saturday at 4 p.m. Northwest Florida State topped Eastern Florida State 92-71 on Friday. 

 

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