It's Christmas tournament time, and the Prophet is as blazing and bright as Rudolph's red nose.
Your rage of sage is coming off his first perfect card of the hoop season. The Prophet went 6-0 last week -- winning two boys and four girls games -- and has climbed back over the 70 percent mark at 85-36 (.702) overall.
In boys action, the sage told you that South River would win at Southern for the first time since 1983. The Seahawks (4-1) were favored by two points and emerged a 69-62 victor.
Broadneck (2-1) was tabbed by seven points over winless North County (0-5) and won, 49-42.
The girls of Broadneck (3-0) also came through for the Prophet by defeating North County (2-2), 45-38. The Bruins were favored by four.
Other girls teams making the Prophet look good were Arundel, St. Mary's and Spalding, though the Cavaliers did so in negative
Arundel (2-2) was a two-point pick over Northeast (3-2) and won by 57-46, while St. Mary's (6-2) easily covered the 10-point spreadover Annapolis (2-1) by rolling, 74-43.
Spalding (3-5) went into Western (4-1) of Baltimore a 20-point underdog and that proved to be rather modest, as the Cavaliers were humbled, 67-25.
This week, the Prophet will pick the winners of six tournaments. The ambitious undertaking actually covers 19 boys and girls games.
Hope you had a great Christmas day and are ready to get back to hoops.
St. Mary's Tournament
Archbishop Spalding (1-5) vs. South River (4-1), 5.30 p.m. today.
This won't be much of a game, because the Seahawks are loaded with outstanding players, such as Albert Lee and Darren Hall.
Spalding finally got its first win of the season last Friday by 64-50 over Arlington Baptist of Baltimore, but Coach Lee Dove's Cavaliers just aren't in a class withSouth River.
The Prophet predicts that South River will win this game in a breeze and take the tournament championship tomorrow night.The two victories will tie the school record for most consecutive wins at six.
South River plus 20 over Spalding.
Severn School (5-3) vs. St. Mary's (2-6), 7:30 p.m. tonight.
Severn may be banged up with injuries that have stars Brad Fowler and Jake Mack on the sidelines, but Chris Pitkin and mates will get the job done and advance to the championship game, where they will get hammered.
Severn plus6 over St. Mary's.
(Championship game, 7.30 p.m. tomorrow: South River plus 10.)
Capital City Classic
Bethesda-Chevy Chase (1-3) vs. Cardozo (2-2), 6 p.m. tomorrow.
Cardozo,a team from Washington's Inter-High Athletic Association (DCIAA) West Division, owns a victory over Baltimore Catholic League power Loyola. The Dons were ranked No. 10 by The Sun at the time of the loss.
Cardozo will take this game by a double-digit margin, then upset Annapolis in the final Saturday night.
Cardozo plus 10 over BCC.
Poly (1-2) vs. Annapolis (3-0), 8 p.m. tomorrow
Coach John Brady's Panthers will put away the Engineers, but have problems with Cardozo in the finale. The Prophet expects Annapolis to drop its first game in the final, unless 6-foot-6 junior B. J. Gross can put it all together, as he did in last Wednesday night's 100-77 victory over Edmondsonof Baltimore with 16 points, 22 boards and 10 blocks.
Annapolis plus 6 over Poly.
(Championship game, 8 p.m. Saturday: Cardozo plus2 over Annapolis.)
Bob Pascal Tournament
North County (0-5) vs. Severna Park (4-0), 6 p.m. tomorrow
WinlessNorth County coach Brad Wilson was encouraged after last Thursday night's 49-42 loss to Broadneck (2-1), saying, "We're not that far frombeing a good basketball team."
His optimism is understandable, but it must be mentioned that this is not as strong a Broadneck team aswe've seen the last three years.
Severna Park is a 4A contender with good size and a host of outstanding players led by Rich Riffle and Scott Brown. The Falcons will put the Knights away early and advance to what shapes up as a great final opposite Chesapeake.
Severna Park plus 12 over North County.
Northeast (2-3) vs. Chesapeake (4-0), 8 p.m. tomorrow.
Off to its best start in school history, Coach Tom Kraning's Cougars are for real. Seniors Wes Van Wambeke (6-4) and Mike Lind (6-5) give the Cougars a lot of strength inside, nicely complementing the outside marksmanship of Mark and Justin Hall.
Northeast is a pretty good team, but may be overmatched in this one.
Chesapeake plus 6 over Northeast.
(Championship game, 8 p.m. Saturday: Chesapeake plus 2 over Severna Park.)
Meade Christmas Tournament
Glen Burnie (3-1) vs. Old Mill (3-1), 6 p.m. tomorrow.
Old Mill is coming off its first loss, 71-57, at Frederick (5-0) last Friday night, but the Pats should rebound and knock out the Gophers. Glen Burnie has a nice record thus far, but other than Class 2A Northeast (the Gophers' only loss), they haven't played anybody.
Look for a big game from Ravon Austin, as the Pats romp.
Old Mill plus 8 over Glen Burnie.
Edgewood (2-1) vs. Meade (2-1), 8 p.m. tomorrow.
The Prophet expects Meade to win its own tournament, as it usually does. Like Old Mill, Meade is coming off a loss, 57-52, to Bladensburg (2-1) of Prince George's County, but the Mustangs will be just fine.
Brian Parker, the Mustangs' 6-8 senior center, will lead the way, and Meade will knock off this Harford County foe and advance to the final vs. Old Mill. Meade's overall height will enable it to play a half-court game and overcome Old Mill's quickness in the championship.
Meade plus 4 over Edgewood.
(Championship game, 8 p.m. Saturday: Meade plus 3 over Old Mill.)
at Archbishop Spalding
Mercy (3-3) vs. Chesapeake (1-2), 4 p.m. today.
The Cougars boast an outstandingplayer in 5-9 junior Denise Perrone, but are short on experience. Perrone had 21 points, six boards, three blocks and three steals in theCougars' first win last week, by 53-47 over Spalding (3-5).
Perrone's play should keep the Cougars of Coach Ginger Woods in the game, but in the end, Mercy's overall talent, led by returning All-Metro pick Stephanie Rohe, will prevail.
Mercy plus 6 over Chesapeake.
Broadneck (3-0) vs. Mount de Sales (0-3), 6 p.m. tonight
The Bruins are going to be the runner-up to top-seeded St. Mary's (6-2) in this holiday tourney. St. Mary's has a first-round bye and will play theSpalding vs. North County winner at 8 p.m. tomorrow.
Broadneck should blow out Mount de Sales without breaking a sweat, and then dispose of Mercy in a close one in the semis.
Broadneck plus 15 over Mount de Sales.
Archbishop Spalding (4-5) vs. North County (2-2), 8 p.m. tonight.
North County's superior height will spoil the host team's opener. Amy Langville will get her points,
but the Knights are simply deeper and will advance to the 8 p.m. semifinal tomorrow night vs. St. Mary's.
Renita Johnson will be the star for North County in this first one.
North County plus 6 over Spalding.
(Championship game, 8 p.m. Saturday: St. Mary's plus 8 over Broadneck -- orwhoever the Saints play).
Meade (0-2) vs. Arundel (2-3), 9.15 a.m. today.
This tournament ought to be tagged the "Early Riser."
The girls have to take a back seat to the Wildcats' wrestling tournament that starts in the afternoon. Can't expect much of a crowd on work days.
Coach Lee Rogers' Wildcats should roll in the first one, with senior guard Mary Pat Fannon showing the way, but will have problems with Westminster in the final.
Arundel plus 7 over Meade.
Northeast (3-2) vs. Westminster (3-2), 11 a.m. today.
It's going to be really tough for Coach Calvin Vain's Eagles to win this tournament. If Class 2A Northeast wins, it would mean victories over two pretty good Class 4A schools in Westminster andArundel, who they lost to last Thursday by 57-46.
Westminster owns a victory over a pretty good Severna Park (2-2) team and boasts oneof the top players in the metro area in 5-6 senior point guard Stephanie Morningstar. The Owls will counter Eagles' 5-11 senior Debbi Dadds with 5-10 junior Kenya Warfield.
The sage likes the Owls to take the Eagles, then spoil the party with a win over the Wildcats.
Westminster plus 5 over Northeast.
(Championship game, 11 a.m. tomorrow: Westminster plus 2 over Arundel.)
THE PROPHET TO DATE
Right.. .. Wrong.. .. Pct.
85.. .. .. .. 36.. .. .702