By Austin Gayle, Enquirer contributor
The Pat Goedde era at Cincinnati’s La Salle High School got off to a hot start, and that may be an understatement.
A lopsided affair from start to finish, Goedde led his Lancers to a 78-49 victory over visiting Shroder Paideia Academy in the team’s season opener at Flynn Gym on Saturday night, Dec. 9, symbolically paying tribute to the 28-year Lancers coach he replaced.
Goedde, a born-and-raised La Salle enthusiast, saw it as a dream come true.
“I think I wanted to cry three times,” Goedde said. “This is my home. It’s just great to be the coach here. I’ve waited since I was 3 years old to coach here, so it’s kind of emotional.”
Moving on from Lancer basketball to spend more time with his family, Dan Fleming passed the proverbial torch to his longtime assistant coach Goedde in the spring, igniting a long-overdue fire courtside for La Salle.
“It’s time to move over, take that seat and jump up,” Goedde said. “The guys love being around me, and they love playing for me. You’ll see it. Night in and night out, the guys are going to do it. They’re blue-collar guys. They’re like me.”
Fitted with his blue collar, Goedde inspired a fast-paced, high-energy La Salle offense with his non-stop motor along the bench.
“Pat gets us fired up all the time, whether it’s in practice or in game like today,” Lancers senior guard Riley Haubner said. “I think him getting us fired up helps us play harder.”
Haubner, the Lancers’ lone returning starter this season, took control of the game right from the start, knocking in 8-of-15 shots and all three of his free throw attempts for a team-high 19 points in the first half. Fellow senior Henry Louden was La Salle’s second leading scorer th
Haubner and his team also combined for 10 steals and outpaced the Jaguars in assists eight to one in the first half.
Shroder senior guard Brandon Doss served as the Jaguars’ fire starter on offense with his 12 points, eight coming from the line. He also led his team with six rebounds and was responsible for the team’s only assist of the first half. However, his efforts weren’t enough for his team to avoid a significant deficit heading into the half, as no other Jaguars player had more than three points.
Leading 47-28 at the start of the second half, Goedde & Co. started right back where they left off.
The La Salle defense held Shroder to just nine points in the third period, while the offense put together a 17-point period to enter the final 16 minutes with a 28-point lead.
Of course, Goedde’s Lancers weren’t interested in letting off the gas.
Applying pressure on both sides of the court, La Salle finished the contest strong by virtue of an assist-laden offense and tight man defense.
Haubner led the Lancers with 29 total points, while Louden finished with a team-high four assists and six rebounds. Defensively, La Salle forced 24 Shroder turnovers and recorded 16 steals.
“I think my gam has definitely improved since last year,” Haubner said. “I’ve definitely improved on getting to the basket and finishing at the basket.”