By DAVID VANTRESS
THE GOSHEN NEWS
It’s been a busy first week of the 2012-13 college basketball season for the Goshen College men, with four games scheduled in the first seven days.
The Maple Leafs brought a 2-0 record into the third of those games Saturday afternoon at Gunden Gymnasium as Goshen took on Calumet College of St. Joseph in the final game of the Maple City Hoopfest.
They left Gunden Gymnasium with a 3-0 record and an 80-70 win over the Crimson Wave.
The tournament is now a classic format with no true championship game, but since both teams were 1-0 in the tournament, Saturday’s game was a the de-facto championship contest.
Calumet dispatched Kuyper, 83-64 Friday night.
And early on in this one, it was apparent the Maple Leafs would be in for a tougher game than Thursday night’s blowout win over Kuyper College.
With about five minutes gone in the first half and the game tied at 10, Goshen went on a 9-0 run that led to a 14-point lead at 35-21.
But a late surge by Calumet sent the two teams into the locker room with a slim 41-39 halftime advantage for Goshen.
The Maple Leafs pulled out to an eight-point lead eartly in the second half and never led by less than five the rest of the afternoon.
It wasn’t a pretty game, according to Goshen coach Gary Chupp.
But he’ll gladly take a win.
“There never seemed to be a flow to this game,” Chupp said. “But we’re going to have nights in our conference (the Crossroads League) where we’re going to have to grind it out.”
Chupp’s team is also going to need offensive balance on a nightly basis, and the Maple Leafs got that on Saturday, with five players in double figures.
Sophomore guard Stephon Luckey led the way with 24 points.
Matt Glick and Tavo Parrall added 11 apiece and Matthew martin and Kyle Davis each chipped in with 10.
Luckey has adapted quickly to the higher-level game he finds in the NAIA after spending his freshman year at a junior college.
“I’m learning to depend on my teammates and not have to do so much myself,” Luckey said.
The Maple Leafs return to action Monday when they host Sienna Heights in a nonconference contest at 7:30 p.m.