For Devonte Green, one half of a basketball game Saturday proved plenty.
Green scored 23 of his 25 points in the first half as Long Island Lutheran defeated St. Raymond, 69-58, at Baruch College in the 11th annual Big Apple Basketball High School Invitational.
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The early scoring from Green came in a few different ways and the crowd, with many in the stands screaming the shooting guard's name, seemed to appreciate the variety.
After swooshing a three-pointer, Green made a steal near half court and seconds later slammed the ball into the basket with a one-handed dunk. The play capped a 9-0 run and gave LuHi a 16-6 lead in the first quarter.
"I was getting hot and the shots kept falling," said Green, who shot 8 of 17 from the field and also had six rebounds and four assists. "I was definitely feeling it on the defensive end, too."
Long Island Lutheran (10-2) trailed only for a brief period in the opening minute and, with Green producing at will, held a 38-22 lead at the half. LuHi led by as many as 23 points in the middle of the third quarter.
Green was far from being the only LuHi player to score in double-digits. Chris Atkinson had 12 points, six assists and four steals. Robyn Missa added 13 points and seven rebounds and Marvin Prochet chipped in 10 points and nine rebounds.
"Everything was working for us," Atkinson said. "I was getting my teammates involved and when that happens, the lane opens for me and I'm able to score as well."
As the lone returning starter from last season's team, Atkinson said it's been difficult at times to make all of his teammates jell. Saturday he made it look easy.
"I'm the point guard, so I have to lead by example and run the right plays," Atkinson said. "I got to work hard, though, to get them open shots. If I get them the right shots, it makes it easier for me."
Atkinson played all 32 minutes and facilitated superbly to whomever shared the court with him.
"I don't get tired," he said. "That's one thing I don't do."
Before the game, LuHi coach John Buck feared his team would lose the rebounding battle. And they did, 34-41. But the game plan was to execute offensively inside, make free throws and force turnovers.
And they did plenty of all three. LuHi scored 38 points in the paint and made 17 of 23 free throws. More impressively, they forced 28 turnovers.
"At practice all we do is defense, defense, defense," said Green, who played 25 minutes.
St. Raymond trapped and double-teamed Green more in the second half, but LuHi maintained a lead of at least 11 points throughout.
"Practice is probably twice as worse as a game," Green said, "so we're used to going hard the whole way."