Maryland school starts Patriot pipeline

Archbishop Spalding High School in Severn, Md., has a healthy tradition of turning out Division I players.

UConn's Rudy Gay was one of two of last year's seniors to sign with D-I programs. A third is expected to play D-I ball next season after a year at a prep school.

Two years ago, 7-footer Will Bowers signed with Maryland. A teammate is now at Mt. St. Mary's.

So it was no surprise when three Cavaliers signed letters of intent during November's early signing period.

In the process, two of those players set the stage for some interesting subplots over the next four seasons. With 6-1 combo guard Justin Castleberry headed to Bucknell, and 6-5 forward Lawrence Dixon committed to Holy Cross, imagine the possible storylines as when those two traditional Patriot League contenders meet over the next couple years. Ditto for the annual homecoming visits to American the two will make.

That, of course, will depend on both players developing into contributors at the college level. But the poteential is there.

So far this season, Castleberry is averaging 16.3 points per game with 33 assists and 11 turnovers for the 6-1 Calaliers, who lost their first game of the season Castleberry scored 23 pointsin that loss.

Dixon is averaging just under 10 points per game. No rebounding stats are available on the Spalding Web site.

You will find recaps of each Spalding game on that site, along with a team news page where somebody has dutifully posted an exhaustive library of articles about the team and its players all on one long scroll of a page. It is not the most user-friendly page you will encounter, but your reward for putting up with the scroll is a plethora of articles reposted from subscription based that would otherwise cost you money to read.

Included on the page are two installments of James Quinn's "Jim Time With ..." series featuring Castleberry and Dixon.

Both players are also listed by the Washington Post as players to watch this season in the D.C. area.

Here's what The Post had to say about Castleberry:
JUSTIN CASTLEBERRY, Spalding, G, Sr.: Speed is the main reason he'll play at Bucknell next year, and he can take over a game. With 10 seconds left in an overtime win over Calvert Hall last season, Castleberry dribbled the length of the court and scored the winning layup.
On Dixon, The Post said:
LAWRENCE DIXON, Spalding, F, Sr.: At 6 feet 4 inches, Dixon is a threat on the post. He prefers to play from the wing, though, where he can either drive to the basket or shoot (he had eight three-pointers last year).
Spalding's Marquis Sullivan, the Loyola (Md.) signee who leads Spalding in scoring (20.4 ppg), also made the Post's list.

By the way, Castleberry's birthday is Dec. 19. Bucknell fans can send birthday greetings to
Holy Cross fans missed Dixon's b-day, Dec. 5. But belated greetings can reach Dixon at

By the way, Holy Cross assisant coach Andrew Sachs was an assistant at Spalding the last three seasons.

The Cavaliers are off until Friday night, when the open play in the Bullis Holiday Classic.

We have some stuff on some other recruits, but we'll save that for another day during finals.

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