When a basketball team depends on two players for most of its scoring and one of them is taken out of his game, it can mean trouble.

But when the two players are in a shooting rhythm like 17th-ranked Good Counsel's Kurt Small and Nii Nelson-Richards were last night against McNamara, the drawbacks of the system aren't noticed.

Small and Nelson-Richards combined for an astonishing 67 points as the Falcons (12-2, 2-1) held back stubborn 16th-ranked McNamara, 88-77, at Good Counsel.

Held in check by DeMatha in their previous game, Small and Nelson-Richards bounced back splendidly, scoring 32 and 35 points, respectively.

"The papers saying that Ted Ellis {DeMatha} shut me down got me mad," said Nelson-Richards. "And I felt that I had to come back and play harder and prove myself. If DeMatha would have played 'man' like McNamara did, then I think Kurt and I would have gone off like we did tonight, but their trap really kept the ball out of our hands."

Nelson-Richards and Small started relatively slowly against McNamara and the first quarter ended with the Falcons trailing, 22-18. But Good Counsel opened the next period with a 15-2 run and went on to a 48-34 halftime margin.

McNamara (14-4, 2-2) still had its chances behind the performances of Keith Veney (20 points), Chad Truesdale (17) and Keith Robinson (16). But each time the Mustangs managed a run, they were either rebuffed by Nelson-Richards and Small or stopped themselves by failing to make foul shots.

McNamara's final chance came after it clawed to within 80-74, prompting a Good Counsel timeout with 2:36 remaining. Two free throws by Small and Brian Ligon's follow shot clinched it.