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BUFFS WEATHER POOR START

Godfrey leads comeback with double-doubleGodfrey leads comeback with double-double

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BUFFS WEATHER POOR START

Manteca High center Eric Godfrey goes up strong to get his shot off over Beyer defenders Josh Fenech (00) and Collin Nelson during a Modesto City Classic contest Wednesday.

JONAMAR JACINTO/The Bulletin


POSTED December 2, 2010 2:53 a.m.

MODESTO — The Modesto City Classic’s defending champion got a big wake-up call during opening-round of the 16-team tournament at Modesto High Wednesday.

Beyer — a team that won just one of its 26 games last season — staggered Manteca High at the outset by scoring the game’s first eight points, hitting four 3-pointers in the first quarter, forcing four early turnovers and eventually stretching that lead to 17(26-9) by the 6:34 mark of the second period.

“We just didn’t come out ready,” Manteca junior guard Ben Odell said.

Enter Buffalo big man EJ Godfrey.

More like “re-enter” Buffalo big man EJ Godfrey.

The brawny 6-foot-5 center was benched with two fouls midway through the first quarter, but his return led to a big comeback that culminated into an easy 64-50 victory.

Godfrey poured in 11 of his game-high 20 points in the second quarter, anchoring a 15-0 run that spanned 5 minutes. Manteca (1-1) still trailed 30-25 at halftime, but the uphill struggle was clearly Beyer’s to climb.

Godfrey also pulled down 12 rebounds for a double double.

“Give Beyer credit, they pressured us and got us out of rhythm,” Manteca coach Dave Asuncion said. “And with EJ picking up the two fouls that took away our No. 1 option.

“It’s no secret that we want to go inside to EJ, and it’s up to the other team to try and stop him. The other guys have to take advantage of that, too.”

And that’s exactly how Manteca broke it open in the third quarter, which belonged to Odell and the rest of the supporting cast.

Odell scored 11 of his 16 points in the period, mostly in transition.

His most impressive bucket came with 2:09 left, when he blocked a shot and secured the ball in the same motion before taking it the other way himself to rattle in an acrobatic layup. That gave Manteca a 46-41 lead.

The Buffaloes took their first lead of the game, 36-34, with 4:51 to go in the third on Matt Burrows’ lay-in. Burrows contributed 10 points to the cause.

Rigo Gutierrez also keyed the second-half eruption and finished with 12 points and five assists. Point guard Taylor Hasal struggled from the field (2 points) but dished out eight assists. Matt Mueller gave the Buffaloes a boost off the bench, as the 6-4 post hauled in nine boards.

Dylan Albiani scored 11 points for Beyer (0-2), and Connor Rawe chipped in eight points and nine rebounds.
“It’s better for the team (when) everybody gets involved and we’re getting buckets from everywhere,” Godfrey said.

Manteca faces either tourney co-host Modesto or Los Banos in the winner’s-bracket quarterfinals today at 8 p.m.

Sophomore
Manteca 71, Beyer 66

Down by seven to start the fourth quarter, Manteca (2-0) scored 20 points in the final frame to upend the Modesto City Classic co-host.

Austin Haro spearheaded the Buffaloes with 21 points and seven rebounds; Nick Obazuaye posted a 15-point, 13-rebound double double; and Miguel Gamez sank 7-of-8 free throws while firing 18 points.

Manteca plays the winner of the Modesto-Los Banos game tonight back at Beyer High.

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