Gordon prevails in tight OT win over New Paltz 78-73

Hans Miersma had 15 points and 11 rebounds

Hans Miersma had 15 points and 11 rebounds

Sam Johnson collected nine points and nine rebounds

Sam Johnson collected nine points and nine rebounds

(Newtown CT) Gordon scored the last six points of overtime and defeated New Paltz, 78-73, on Saturday afternoon in the consolation game of the Chuck Resler Tournament held at Rochester, New York.

The Scots trailed by a point with 1:20 left in overtime but took the lead for good on layups by Hans Miersma and Jason Dempsey.  Jaren Yang closed out the scoring with two free throws in the last second.

Gordon gets its first win in a game that was there for the taking for both teams.  I watched on Rochester’s Live Stats and there was no comfort zone for either team.

The largest lead for either team?  Six points.  Tie scores? Eleven.  Lead changes? Sixteen.

Playing on short rest, Gordon struggled to take care of the ball and the Hawks (0-4) had fourteen steals.  I had to go back two years to a game against Leslie to find a similar game.

The shaky Gordon ball care was offset by a dominating inside effort.  The Scots had a 53-34 advantage on the boards.  The key stat of the game?  Gordon had 25 second-chance points.  New Paltz was limited to 10 points in that category.

Hans Miersma recovered from a foul-plagued, five-minute first half to pace Gordon with fifteen points and eleven rebounds.  The GC senior topped the Efficiency list with a 22.  Hans now has two straight double/doubles

Sophomore Sam Johnson played an important part in keeping Gordon in contention in the first half.   Sam had nine rebounds and nine points in easily his best game so far.

New Paltz didn’t have the size of GC’s first-round opponent (Rochester).  The Hawks opted to fire away from long range.  Kevin Roach (20 points) made his only three late in regulation to get the game into overtime.  The Scots had the ball for the final 22 seconds of regulation but could not draw a foul or make a shot during that time.

Freshman Jaren Yang finished with twelve points and three assists and was named to the All-Tourney team.

Efficiency List:
Hans Miersma 22
Kevin Roach 18
Sam Johnson 17
Jaren Yang 13
Andrew Seniuk 13
Taylor Sowah 13

Gordon 93
New Paltz 80

Gordon (1-2) returns to the Bennett Center on Tuesday night (7:30PM) facing Salem State.

Where’s New Paltz?  In eastern New York halfway between New York City and Albany.

Game boxscore

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Bad spell ruins Scots in 72-55 loss on the road to Rochester

Senior Jason Dempsey had eight points and three assists against Rochester

Senior Jason Dempsey had eight points and three assists against Rochester

Hans Miersma had a double/double (10 points and 11 rebounds)

Hans Miersma had a double/double (10 points and 11 rebounds)

(Newtown CT) The Scots turned cold and careless in the first half and it led directly to their second straight loss.

Rochester (NY) University (2-0) took control in the first half and won, 72-55, on Friday night at Rochester.

Gordon put nine missed shots together with five turnovers during a six-minute stretch in the first half.  While GC struggled mightily, the Yellowjackets rolled off sixteen unanswered points.  The Scots two-point deficit (23-21) elevated to eighteen (39-21) and they never recovered.

The Scots (0-2) will look for their first win of the season tomorrow facing New Paltz at 1PM.

I checked out the Yellowjackets’ roster and watched the Live Stats from the RU website.

No question the team from New York had plenty of size and used it well.  The top player in the game was 6-8 junior Dylan Peretz who recorded a 22 in efficiency collecting 13 points and 11 rebounds.

What caught my eye statistically was the fact that Gordon had only seven free throws while Rochester attempted thirty-six freebies.  (I went back three seasons and couldn’t find a game where Gordon took fewer free throws.)

The free throw disparity suggests to me that the RU interior defense forced Gordon to settle for jump shots and 3-pointers.  The Yellowjackets on the other hand were able to get high-percentage shots and/or free throws.

The GC inside duo of Hans Miersma and Jason Dempsey was much better in Game Two.  Hans had his first double/double of the season getting 10 points and 11 rebounds.  Jason contributed 8 points and 3 assists.

The Scots did get within eight several times in the second half but those sixteen unanswered points in the first half were too much to overcome.

Efficiency – Dylan Peretz 22, Kevin Sheehy 18, Hans Miersma 14, Jason Dempsey 14, Tyler Sankes 12.

Team efficiency – Rochester 90, Gordon 60

Game boxscore

Sad to hear of the passing of former GC President Jud Carlberg this week.  Jud and Jan were big fans of Gordon basketball.

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Taylor Bajema career game not enough as MIT tops Gordon 64-51

Taylor Bajema (19 points) led all scorers

Taylor Bajema (19 points) led all scorers

Ryan Frankel (18 points and 8 assists)

Ryan Frankel (18 points and 8 assists)

(Wenham MA) A career game by senor Taylor Bajema was a sight to behold but not enough to carry the Scots past MIT in the home opener on Tuesday night.

The Engineers (1-0) of Cambridge had size on Gordon and a much more consistent flow of offense as they won this non-league contest, 64-51.

The bright light in the loss was Taylor Bajema.  His points (19) led all scorers and matched his career high.  He had nineteen against Wheaton (Norton MA) as a sophomore.  Versus MIT, Taylor paced Gordon in rebounds (7) and assists (5).  One game doesn’t make a season, but in this one Taylor put up the numbers of the graduated Alex Carnes.  That’s a good thing!

MIT did a terrific job of neutralizing Gordon’s inside game.  Any team that shuts out Jason Dempsey (0-for-8) and limits Hans Miersma to six points and five rebounds will handle the Scots.  In last year’s loss at Cambridge, Hans had eighteen points and thirteen rebounds.  Certainly nothing close to that in tonight’s sixth straight loss to the Engineers.

Andrew Acker (16 points) keeps the ball from Hans Miersma

Andrew Acker (16 points) keeps the ball from Hans Miersma

Andrew Acker turned in a double/double for MIT with 16 points and 10 rebounds.  Justin Pedley (18 points) clicked five times (in ten tries) from down town.  Point guard Ryan Frankel (18 points) was excellent with zero turnovers and a game-high eight assists.

The bottom line?  MIT is very good and the team we saw at the Bennett Center was missing its best player, Matt Redfield.  The 6-8 senior last year averaged 13 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 2.3 blocks.  Okay, MIT is potentially scary good!

Two serious scoring droughts did in Gordon.  In the first half, a 14-14 tie evolved into a 25-15 deficit during a 4 1/2 minute stretch.  In the second half, MIT put an 18-4 run together (GC was 1-for-7 with 3 turnovers) and moved to complete control (56-39) with 7:49 left.

The key to Taylor Bajema’s big game?  Taking the ball to the hoop even against the traffic of taller defenders.  Taylor’s ability to finish off the dribble should loosen some of the tight defenses Hans Miersma faces.

Jaren Yang guards Ryan Frankel

Jaren Yang guards Ryan Frankel

With last year’s point guard Park Thomas graduated, I wondered if GC would be able to handle pressure.  MIT never used it so time will tell in that area.  Freshman Jaren Yang handled the point for 31 minutes.  He certainly is quick and he certainly can dribble.  Shooting? Four-of-eleven including two-of-eight from long range.  The best stat for Jaren, in my opinion, was zero turnovers.  The stat that needs to change?  One assist.

Besides Jaren, those at the Bennett Center got their first looks at Dylan Marshall, Jake Hart, and Graham Tienhaara.  Dylan (5-10) ended up matched against 6-6 Justin Pedley.

It was nice to see the banner in the rafters for Gordon’s 2013-14 Commonwealth Coast Conference basketball championship season.  The wonderful after-taste of the Scots remarkable comeback in the championship game at Nichols may never leave.

Dominic Paradis (12 points) sees an opening

Dominic Paradis (12 points) sees an opening

MIT has won 20 or more games for six straight seasons.

MIT (NEWMAC) and Gordon (CCC) were both picked to finish second in their conferences in this year’s preseason poll.  WPI is the choice in the NEWMAC while Easter Nazarene gets it in the CCC.

Second game for the Scots is at Rochester (NY) at 6PM on Friday night.  No, I won’t be there.  Saturday may provide a rematch with Utica.  Gordon faced Utica in the NCAA D3 post-season in 2006 at WPI.

Efficiency stats: Taylor Bajema 25, Ryan Frankel 20, Andrew Acker 20, Justin Pedley 13, Dominic Paradis 13

Team efficiency stats: MIT 73, Gordon 56

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Andrew Acker and Udoka Obiora

Andrew Acker and Udoka Obiora

Jason Dempsey goes for the block

Jason Dempsey goes for the block

Mine!

Mine!

Jason Dempsey gets over Tim Butala

Jason Dempsey gets over Tim Butala

Justin Pedley and Taylor Bajema

Justin Pedley and Taylor Bajema

Jaren Yang gets two

Jaren Yang gets two

Hans Miersma in scoring position

Hans Miersma in scoring position

Freshman Jake Hart

Freshman Jake Hart

Justin Pedley (five 3-pointers)

Justin Pedley (five 3-pointers)

Freshman Jaren Yang

Freshman Jaren Yang

Freshman Graham Tienhaara

Freshman Graham Tienhaara

 

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Gordon stays undefeated (seven straight) with 2-0 win over UNE in men’s soccer

Daniel Perez passes to Evan Crocker

Daniel Perez passes to Evan Crocker

Evan Crocker shoots

Evan Crocker shoots

Evan Crocker shot about to go past UNE goalie Aidan McParland

Evan Crocker shot about to go past UNE goalie Aidan McParland

Senior Andy Guthrie gets set for a penalty kick

Senior Andy Guthrie gets set for a penalty kick

(Biddeford ME) Gordon defeated UNE, 2-0, in Commonwealth Coast Conference men’s soccer on a sunny/cloudy/windy Saturday afternoon.

This was a battle between undefeated (at home) UNE and undefeated Gordon.

Second half goals by seniors Andy Guthrie and Evan Crocker separated the Scots from the Nor’Easters (3-2-1).

Junior transfer Bruce Gerberich made his first start in net for Gordon and had a relatively quiet afternoon making only three saves.

Gordon (7-0) seems to have successfully reloaded after last season’s remarkable 19-3 record that included a CCC title and a win in post-season tourney play.

Plenty of newcomers dot the Scots roster and Coach Derek Potteiger wasn’t shy about using them.  One GC fan told me afterwards, “I don’t even know who these new players are but every time one of them gets on the field you can tell right away that they can play.”

Gordon had three goals in the first thirteen minutes of the second half but only two of them counted.  The uncounted one counted for a while before the officials reconvened and ruled rightly that Gordon (Daniel Perez) was offsides when an “own” goal was scored by UNE.

Evan Crocker taken down by Scott Mitchell

Evan Crocker taken down by Scott Mitchell

Evan Crocker’s rush down the left side into the box drew a penalty on UNE defender Scott Mitchell at the 49:49 mark.

Senior Andy Guthrie took the PK and drilled it past UNE goalie Aidan McParland.  Andy is now 2-for-2 on penalty kicks.

Seven minutes later Goal #2 was disallowed by the Daniel Perez offsides.

Two minutes later Daniel Perez and Evan Crocker combined for a second goal that did count.  Daniel broke from left to right into the middle and passed beautifully to Evan breaking in (again) from the left.  Evan had time for a good look and was able to beat the UNE goalie with a low shot the goalie’s right.  This was Evan’s second goal of the season.

Daniel Perez offsides on near Gordon goal in the second half

Daniel Perez offsides on near Gordon goal in the second half

Gordon dominated the final thirty-one minutes although UNE had several long shots that could have been dangerous but didn’t turn out that way.

I was impressed with Gordon’s short passing game.  It was quick and it was accurate for the most part.

Defender Sammy Wilson also impressed me.  The sophomore from Christian Heritage in Trumbull (CT) was usually the last defender in front of goalie Bruce Gerberich.  Sammy decision making was excellent.

Gordon gets Eastern Connecticut next on Tuesday away.  GC defeated EC in the post-season in 2013.

UNE will be playing at Bowdoin on the same day.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Nathan Bilbie about to head

Nathan Bilbie about to head

Caleb Cole and Sean Goodrich

Caleb Cole and Sean Goodrich

Bruce Gerberich makes first start in GC goal

Bruce Gerberich makes first start in GC goal

Senior Adam King leaps to block a Caleb Cole pass

Senior Adam King leaps to block a Caleb Cole pass

Freshman Matt Jaeger looks to head

Freshman Matt Jaeger looks to head

Daniel Perez in close

Daniel Perez in close

Freshman Tim Andrassy (#4) looks to head

Freshman Tim Andrassy (#4) looks to head

action in front of the Gordon net

action in front of the Gordon net

Nathan Bilbie

Nathan Bilbie

Kristian Kasiguran surrounded by Tyler Garnick and Sean Goodrich

Kristian Kasiguran surrounded by Tyler Garnick and Sean Goodrich

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Gordon College Graduation – 2014

Packed house at the Bennett Center for the 2014 graduation

Packed house at the Bennett Center for the 2014 graduation

Carolyn Cassidy and Julie McClelland - two of the biggest GC basketball fans

Carolyn Cassidy and Julie McClelland – two of the biggest GC basketball fans

(Wenham MA)  I took in the 124th Gordon College commencement on a Saturday where there was rain when it started and bright sunshine when it was over.

This was the first rainy one I’ve been at.  That rain pushed the activities to indoors at the Bennett Center.  Logistical nightmare, no doubt!

My goal at the commencement was to get a final picture of the  seniors – Roy Ray, Shaun Roach, Alex Carnes, Luke Hamilton, and Park Thomas all members of this season’s CCC championship team.  I did get that done.  I also like to get pictures of their families too.  Didn’t do so well there………way too congested afterwards.

President Michael Lindsay

President Michael Lindsay

I loved the crowd and couldn’t help but wish that maybe next February the Fighting Scots could play the CCC championship game in front of many of them.

I also noticed that the 2013-14 championship banner isn’t in the Bennett Center rafters yet.

One of the memorable moments of this graduation was a medical emergency that happened when President Michael Lindsay was speaking.  The emergency staff was quick and efficient.  Later family members came back informing that the lady involved was okay.  I was pleased that President Lindsay did the role-model thing by taking the situation to God in prayer.  I can tell you, he wasn’t the only one in the crowd doing it!

I wish the players and their families well in the days ahead.  It has been a pleasure connecting with all of you.

Alex Carnes

Alex Carnes

Val Gin..........always serious!

Val Gin……….always serious!

Roy Ray and Shaun Roach

Roy Ray and Shaun Roach

The Rays

The Rays

Park Thomas

Park Thomas

Luke Hamilton

Luke Hamilton

Kevin and Linda Roach

Kevin and Linda Roach

Drew Hall - my dorm my freshman year (1959)

Drew Hall – my dorm my freshman year (1959)

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Williams takes out Gordon 81-63 in NCAA Division 3 Second Round

Williams defense tightened in the second half

Williams defense tightened in the second half

Daniel Wohl ends the first half with a layup

Daniel Wohl ends the first half with a layup

(Williamstown MA) For a half in the second round of the NCAA Division 3 tournament, you couldn’t tell the difference between the second-best team in New England (Williams) and (“Where is that school?”) Gordon.

As I watched the Scots build up a 12-point lead in that first half against Williams I thought optimistically, “We’re right where we were yesterday (Friday) with Babson.”

But what a difference the second halves were!  Babson went to all the things that had gotten them twenty wins in NEWMAC yet could never catch the Scots.  Williams, on the other hand, unleashed a deadly long-range attack after the break and caught Gordon in just two minutes and pulled away thereafter.

Duncan Robinson fires a three

Duncan Robinson fires a three

Williams (25-4) put together a 50-point second half and defeated Gordon, 81-63, on Saturday night at Williams College.

The game with the Ephs (rhymes with “chiefs”) got away from Gordon in a disastrous three-minute segment in which the home team tallied thirteen straight points.

The Scots (up 38-27) were trying to run out the clock in the last minute of the first half but instead gave up layups to Michael Mayer (13 points) and Daniel Wohl (18 points) before the break.  Daniel’s was a full-court drive that beat the buzzer.

But Gordon was still up by seven (38-31) and a similar second half by the Scots was certain to give the folks following the D3 tournament something to talk about.

Williams, however, wasted little time (two minutes) clearing the deficit from the books.  Freshman Mike Greenman struck from downtown three times and suddenly the Ephs had a 40-38 lead.

Jason Dempsey tied the score with a layup but thereafter Williams gradually separated from the obviously tiring Scots.

Alex Carnes puts up a three

Alex Carnes puts up a three

It was tough watching Gordon just-miss shots that had fallen in the previous seventy minutes of basketball.  Seventy?  I have to include the last ten minutes of the Nichols game.

Part of those seventy minutes of terrific basketball was a win the night before against the Babson Beavers. The Scots (18-11) broke new ground for the school and the Commonwealth Coast Conference with that upset.  Gordon had never won an NCAA tourney game (lost three previous tries) and neither had the CCC.  That’s all history now.

Nothing sweet about the loss but what was sweet was that there was time at the end for GC coach Tod Murphy to get his five seniors on and off the court to deserved congratulations.  They will be missed.

Impressive performance by Hans Miersma.  Matched up against NESCAC first-teamer senior Michael Mayer, GC’s 6-9 junior held his own.  Both players ended up with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Efficiency stat
Daniel Wohl 23 (18 points/6 assists)
Duncan Robinson 21 (16 points/7 rebounds/4 assists)
Hans Miersma 20
Michael Mayer 20
Dominic Paradis 16 (10 points/7 rebounds)

Williams 99
Gordon 65

Mike Greenman steals from Richie Armand

Mike Greenman steals from Richie Armand

The efficiency stat was most revealing in the second half.  Williams had a 62 while Gordon came up with a 17.  Ouch!

That sixteen for Dominic was his best number this season.  It is not hard to imagine the freshman getting more minutes in 2014-15 and perhaps even better numbers.

The Gordon support at the two tourney games was truly at the friends-and-family level.  Unfortunately, GC was on winter break.  Williams’ break is in two weeks and they had close to 1000 students cheering them on during their two wins.

Williams has four losses.  They lost their opener by a point to Southern Vermont.  The other three losses?  All to Amherst.  The Ephs could get another chance with the Lord Jeffs if they reach the Final Four.

Next up for Williams is Albertus Magnus of New Haven CT.

Julie and I enjoyed the 2013-14 season with our Gordon family.

Box from the game

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Hans Miersma gets a block on Taylor Epley

Hans Miersma gets a block on Taylor Epley

Hans Miersma defends Michael Mayer

Hans Miersma defends Michael Mayer

Hans Miersma gets two over Daniel Wohl

Hans Miersma gets two over Daniel Wohl

Taylor Bajema in the lane

Taylor Bajema in the lane

Looking for a rebound

Looking for a rebound

Roy Ray

Roy Ray

Alex Carnes

Alex Carnes

Park Thomas

Park Thomas

Shaun Roach

Shaun Roach

Luke Hamilton

Luke Hamilton

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Gordon defeats Babson 76-68 in NCAA tourney opener

Alex Carnes (20 points) shoots from in close

Alex Carnes (20 points) shoots from in close

Park Thomas hit six free throws in the final 39 seconds

Park Thomas hit six free throws in the final 39 seconds

(Williamstown MA) It was a shock to some and a surprise to the rest of us.

But there was Gordon winning their first round game in the NCAA Division 3 men’s basketball tournament, 76-68, over Babson on Friday night at Williams College.

No Commonwealth Coast Conference team had ever won a first round game before the Scots (18-10) got it done.

Gordon trailed the Beavers (20-7) in the early going, 10-6, but then went on a game-turning 15-1 stretch to get up by ten (21-11).  That lead would get larger (32-16) but never smaller than five (70-65) the rest of the way.

The 15-1 separator segment was driven by three’s (Park Thomas, Shaun Roach, Dominic Paradis) and three jumps shots by Alex Carnes.

As you can see, the points were coming from everyone.  The Beavers chose not to press until late in the game giving Gordon plenty of time to run what has become an excellent half-court offense.  Yes there were 19 turnovers but there also were plenty of high percentage shots turning up.

Hans Miersma sets up inside

Hans Miersma sets up inside

In the hard-to-top second half, Gordon made a remarkable 11 of 15 shots attempted.  The Beavers made runs to within six twice late in the game but the Scots responded with layups (Alex Carnes & Hans Miersma) to push Babson back.

Anyone at Williams sweating this one out in the final minutes will rave about Gordon’s foul shooting.  Terrific!  The team shot 19-for-21 in the game.  Park Thomas made all ten of his in the second half including six straight in the last 39 seconds.

Alex Carnes (20 points) topped the efficiency chart.  The 6-4 senior carried Gordon in the first half with thirteen points on 6-for-9 shooting.

Alex also spent time defending Babson’s Joey Flannery.  Joey was the ROY and POY in the NEWMAC this season.  Joey heated up in the second half and ended up with 17 points and 9 rebounds.

Joey Flannery

Joey Flannery

Watching Joey Flannery put up a lot of shots late reminded me of the Nichols game in which the Bison turned their scoring opportunities over to Ryan Sheehan.

Efficiency chart

Alex Carnes 22

Joey Flannery 19

Hans Miersma 18

Jason Dempsey 14

David Mack 11

Gordon 85

Babson 52

The Scots will play the host team (Williams) tonight.  Only some were shocked when Gordon defeated Babson.  Almost everyone will be in that state if the Scots find a way to defeat the 24-4 Ephs.  One player certain to require special attention will be Williams’ Mike Mayer.  Mike is 6-9/240 pounds and put up a 40 in Efficiency (25 points/15 rebounds) in last night’s Ephs’ win over Mitchell.

Game box

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Dominic Paradis gets a shot

Dominic Paradis gets a shot

Alex Carnes shoots from long range

Alex Carnes shoots from long range

Jason Dempsey gets fouled

Jason Dempsey gets fouled

Eric Dean chases a loose ball

Eric Dean chases a loose ball

Kenny Ross

Kenny Ross

Richie Armand passes

Richie Armand passes

Park Thomas drives

Park Thomas drives

Hans Miersma free throw

Hans Miersma free throw

Shaun Roach shoots three

Shaun Roach shoots three

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