Exciting win (87-83) over Roger Williams extends Gordon streak to six

Garrisson Duvivier had a dominating performance in tonight’s win over Roger Williams

Eric Demers (20 points) hit a huge three in the last minute

(Amesbury MA) There was plenty to cheer about for both teams but at the end it was the team from Wenham that extended their winning streak to six.

Roger Williams lost to Endicott on Saturday in double overtime.  Their shooting, early in this one, was off.  They were probably tired.

The Scots (10-5), on the other hand, were riding a winning streak and made shot after shot early on.

The Gordon lead was a comfortable 54-40 four minutes into the second half.  But along came Conor O’Brien with two 3’s and a dunk and the Hawks went on a 15-0 run to get the lead, 55-54!

The 6-6 senior had a memorable second half collecting 28 points and 8 rebounds.  Not bad for a player averaging 13 points per game!

Conor O’Brien scored 36 points for the Hawks

But as good as Conor was, the best player was wearing blue….Garrisson Duvivier.  Garrisson had a game his freshman year against ENC that was statistically better, but that was back when teams were trying to figure out what he can do.  Now they know, and yet he was still able to drop 28 points, 18 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 blocks in a tight game against a very good team.  Remarkable!

The Hawks (11-4) took the lead (55-54) with thirteen minutes left.  Then this game became exciting for both teams.  There were THIRTEEN lead changes the rest of the way.  Anyone’s game for sure.

RW took a one-point lead into the final minute but Eric Demers put a three on the home team with 43 seconds left to put the Scots ahead by two.  The Hawks had a two and a three to tie or go ahead but missed both.  Eric Demers was fouled after the second Hawks’ miss.

Jaren Yang had ten points and seven assists vs Roger Williams

Now this was where I became most impressed by Gordon’s play.  Trust me, it wasn’t the missed free throws!  Eric missed the front end of a 1&1 BUT Garrisson secured the offensive rebound and got fouled.

Garrison made one free throw and missed the second BUT Matt Valles secured the offensive rebound and got fouled.  With 11 seconds remaining Matt made 1 of 2 putting GC ahead by four 85-81.

Those offensive rebounds were special because they kept RW away from a last-second shot that could have been a game-winner for them.

Eric reached twenty points for the 10th time this season.  His three in the final minute, assisted by Jaren Yang, kept this game from going south on the Scots.  Eric tied his career-high in rebounds (8) against RW.

Hard to tell through the blurry RW feed of the game if Eric was covering Austin Coene.  Austin came in averaging nearly 25 points per game and had dropped 38 on Endicott this past Saturday.  Against GC?  Had a 5-for-17 evening and 13 points.  No question, however, that Conor O’Brien more than made up for Austin’s scoring dropoff.

One of the key players in Gordon’s recent string of successes has been senior Jaren Yang.  His ability to get the ball to teammates, especially Garrisson and Eric, has elevated his assist totals and dropped his turnover totals.  Last five game?  28 assists, 8 turnovers. Those are good numbers!

Best shot of the game?  Had to have been that last-second prayer by Jake Haar to end the first half.  Even with limited viewing visibility I could tell that it was an off-balanced shot, from long range, against two defenders, and at the last second. Those three points meant something in a game won by only four points.

Efficiency Chart

Garrisson Duvivier 40

Conor O’Brien 36 (34 pts,9 rebs)

Eric 19

Jaren 17 (10 pts, 7 assists)

Jake Heston 13 (13 pts,3 assists)

Gordon 112

Roger Williams 86

The Scots had twenty-four second-chance points and Roger Williams didn’t have any.

Gordon is now tied with Endicott (6-2) in the Commonwealth Coast Conference.  Nichols is a game ahead and were tested by both Wentworth and ENC in their last two games.

Gordon travels to Springfield (MA) to face Western New England on Thursday night.  The Golden Bears pinned a loss on Nichols earlier in the season.

Box from the game

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Roger Williams

Gordon streak reaches five with 81-66 win over Salve Regina

Eric Demers (26 points) topped all scorers

Garrisson Duvivier (19 points,15 rebounds)

(Wenham MA) We’re starting to get spoiled.

Gordon (9-5) ran its winning streak to five as they defeated Salve Regina, 81-66, on Saturday afternoon at the Bennett Center.

The coming week looms large for the Scots with consecutive CCC road games against Roger Williams, Western New England, and Curry.  After losing their first two Commonwealth Coast Conference games, the Scots are on a five-game league win streak and just one game away from the top spot.

Gordon jumped all over the visiting Seahawks (6-9) in the first half leading by as many as twenty-eight points.  There was a sense that the lead would grow enough in the second half to turn this into a bench-clearing event.

Tight defense

But it didn’t go that way and GC coach Tod Murphy wasn’t pleased. “We played about the best basketball we have played all season for sixteen minutes.  Then we sat back and survived the last twenty-four minutes.”

Understand that Salve (6-9) never got within double digits of the lead, but they spent most of the second half hovering too close for GC comfort.

“We became passive in the final twenty-four minutes,” said Coach Murphy.  “They went into their zone and into that switching man defense and we stopped moving and looking for our cuts.”

There was a bigger picture, however, and that was to continue to get W’s.  “I would rather win ugly than lose ugly,” conceded Coach Murphy.

Gordon’s big first half did in Salve.  In a tight game for four minutes (10-8), the home team went on a 31-5 tear over the next thirteen minutes to escape 41-13.  The Seahawks never recovered.

Jake Haar finishes over Kevin Kelly

“Coaches look like they’re really smart when the team is hitting shots, and early on we hit a lot of shots,” said Coach Murphy.

Even with the team letdown in the second half, Eric Demers, Garrisson Duvivier, and Jaren Yang had terrific afternoons.

Eric continues to put up serious numbers, getting over twenty points for the 9th time this season. Teams have tried guarding him closely and even have attempted to deny him the ball, but he still finds openings.  His ability, this year, to cut back on the turnovers while handing out assists and adding steals has been noticeable.

Garrisson has impacted the GC program since the day he arrived in 2015.  He puts up double/double’s with regularity including this afternoon when he put nineteen points together with fifteen rebounds. It was his 9th double D this season.

Jaren Yang had a career game

Senior Jaren Yang may well have had the best game of his Gordon career this afternoon.  Accurate outside shooting (4-for-6) and perfect foul shooting (6-for-6), along with a good eye for the open teammate (8 assists) will get you a very good day.  Jaren reached the career-game level, however, when he added four steals to his totals.

Noah Szilagyi guarded by Gabe Granberry

So you can see that was plenty of good individual moments despite the margin-squandering moments of the second half.

The magic margin number in the second half seemed to be twelve.  Six times in that second half the better defending and better shooting Seahawks lessened their deficit to twelve.  And every time this happened, the Scots were able to react with enough offense/defense to re-enlarge their advantage.

Efficiency chart

Garrisson Duvivier 34

Jaren Yang 25

Eric Demers 18

Isaiah Bowman 18 (16 points)

Cameron Collins 16 (18 points)

Gordon 106

Salve Regina 75

Box from the game

(All the pictures will enlarge if you click on them.)

Josh Crutchfield leads a break

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Salve Regina

Gordon stops streak at six upending Endicott 105-98 in overtime

Jake Haar (22 points) hits a three in overtime.

Eric Demers (33 points) hits a three in overtime.

Keith Brown (28 points) shoots over Eric Demers

(Wenham MA) It had been over three years………and that was more than enough.

Gordon had lost six straight times to Endicott but tonight that stretch of bad endings ended as the Scots (8-5) outlasted the Gulls (9-4) 105-98 in overtime at the Bennett Center on Thursday night.

“It’s kind of what you expect out of an Endicott/Gordon game,” said a delighted GC coach Tod Murphy afterwards.

The coach is right.  With neither school back in session there was still a buzz in the crowd.  This is a Red Sox/Yankees type of rivalry to me.  The usual “coach line” is that “it’s only one game,” but to those of us invested in the Scots, a win over Endicott has a special sweetness to it.  And this was surely a sweet win.

Vinny Clifford (#21) goes for the block on Garrisson Duvivier

The Gulls insisted on playing at a fast pace and it paid off as they transitioned and passed into open looks in both halves.  The visitors from Beverly could put up points in a hurry but on this evening the home team had plenty of answers.

“I don’t want to get into a shootout with Endicott very often, but we’ve got some very good scorers too,” said Coach Murphy.

Keith Brown (28 points) paced the Gulls.  He came in with a 24.9 points per game average and displayed a variety of shots.

On this night, however, it was the Eric Demers show.  The sophomore had a career high thirty-three points and added five assists as well as five steals.  It was the best game I have seen him play.

The final spread was seven points but anyone witnessing this one at the Bennett Center would tell you that Endicott had big leads in each half.  Both times it was eleven points: 36-25 with 3 ½ minutes left in the first half and 63-52 five minutes into the second half.

Eric Demers covered by Keith Brown

But in the age of the 3-point shot, comebacks can happen in a hurry.  This was one of those nights.  Eric Demers made three’s and junior Jake Haar (22 points) did as well.  And when the Gulls overplayed the perimeter there was Garrisson Duvivier (19 points) in close for layups.

In overtime Eric, Jake, and Garrisson put eight unanswered points together and gave GC a 96-90 lead with two minutes left.  Endicott didn’t have the necessary offense/defense to overcome the deficit in the end game.

The Scots have now won four straight and are 4-2 in the Commonwealth Coast Conference.  The two CCC leaders (Nichols and Roger Williams) each have one loss.

“I know that we’re 4-2,” said Coach Murphy, “and I know that Nichols is the team to beat.  We’ll be facing them in a couple of weeks here at the Bennett Center.  However, we need to concentrate on the five games (Salve Regina, Roger Williams, Western New England, Curry, UNE) between now and then.”

Guard Josh Crutchfield had six rebounds

One of the keys to this win?  The Gordon bench (Josh Crutchfield, Parker Omslaer, Noah Szilagyi, Josh Ribiero, and Jake Hart) has been able to come on and gain ground on opponents during the four-game win streak.  “We stuck with our subs for a long time,” said Coach Murphy. “They played well.”

Garrisson Duvivier nearly had the game-winner in regulation.  Garrisson collected his tenth double/double this season putting nineteen points together with fourteen rebounds.

Parker Omslaer jams

Jake Haar had family from California in the house and he didn’t disappoint connecting six times from long range.  Jake’s best game? Last year he had twenty-three points versus the Gulls.

Endicott lost all their starters from last year and it is remarkable how quickly they have regrouped with new players.  One of the key additions to the team is Matt McDevitt (17 points,4 assists) who was the best player in Maine last year.

Rob O’Brien suffered a painful shoulder injury in the first half.

Guard Josh Crutchfield had six rebounds for Gordon.

Former GC players Shaun Roach and Park Thomas were on hand as well as the Dempsey brothers.

Efficiency Chart

Eric Demers 31

Garrisson Duvivier 24

Jake Haar 20

Keith Brown 20

Matt McDevitt 17

Gordon 132

Endicott 103

Box from the game

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

Eric Demers fouled late in overtime

Joe Villa fires a shot at the end of regulation

Garrisson Duvivier beats the Endicott defense

Garrisson Duvivier nearly ends the game in regulation

Garrisson Duvivier in close

Freshman Josh Crutchfield

Noah Szilagyi amongst three Gulls

Battle inside between Garrisson Duvivier and Nick Thibeault (18 points)

Struggle near the rim

Endicott coach Kevin Bettencourt

Jaren Yang gets a layup

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

Gordon defeats Wentworth 77-66 for third straight win

Noah Szilagyi (thirteen in the first half)

Jake Hart (12 points off the bench)

(Amesbury MA) Wentworth has been a pain in the neck for Gordon over the past three years.

That pain, however, eased a bit tonight as the Scots played some fun-to-watch basketball earning a 77-66 win over the Leopards in Boston.

Wentworth had won seven of the previous eight meetings and had twice dropped GC out of the Commonwealth Coast Conference tournament in the last three years.

The Scots (7-5) played like the more experienced team on this night making terrific passes and taking good care of the ball.  I am not sure which pleased me more; the twenty-five assists or the nine turnovers.  Put numbers like that together in a game and a good end-result is likely.

The Leopards (8-4) just weren’t themselves.  Their defense is usually tight but Gordon, on this evening, found openings close to the basket regularly.

If you are looking for time segments where Gordon won this game your best bet would be the last five minutes of each half.

In the first half the Scots led, 31-27, with five minutes left.  WIT didn’t score again missing all six shot attempts.  GC had a 41-27 halftime lead.

In the second half the Leopards had taken a 56-31 deficit with fifteen minutes remaining and cut it to to 64-59 with five minutes left.  The final five minutes?  Wentworth was one-for-seven shooting three’s and GC escaped with a 77-66 win.

Coach Tod Murphy described the win over ENC on Saturday as a “team win.”  I don’t doubt that he’d describe this one as more of the same.

The Scots have now won three straight.

Noah Szilagyi came off the Gordon bench and put up thirteen points in the first half.

Jake Hart, also off the bench, never missed a shot and ended up with twelve points.

Eric Demers (eight assists and several key baskets)

Eric Demers had trouble from long range, so he turned into a passer and a driver.  Result?  Eight assists.  When Wentworth had cut the lead to five in the second half, Eric drove for layups on the next two GC possessions to turn the momentum back to the team from Wenham.

Garrisson Duvivier had his seventh double/double of the season.  The GC junior also had five assists.

Efficiency Chart

Garrisson Duvivier 25

Jason Ganley 23 (25 points)

Stephen Azums 20 (16 pts, 8 rebs)

Noah Szilagyi 16 (13 points)

Jake Hart 14 (12 points)

Gordon 105

Wentworth 75

Next up is Endicott on Thursday night (7:30PM) at the Bennett Center.  The Gulls have beaten Gordon six straight times. One of those wins knocked the Scots out of the CCC tournament in 2016.  Endicott graduated all five starters but have quickly reloaded.

Box from the Wentworth/Gordon game

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Wentworth

Solid team effort pushes Gordon past ENC 81-55

Eric Demers (20 points) shoots over Noah Cheney

Garrisson Duvivier (15 points) active around the rim

(Wenham MA) The Eastern Nazarene offense was as cold as the weather has been around here lately and their defense wasn’t a whole lot better.

Gordon easily defeated ENC, 81-59, on Saturday afternoon getting the 2018 part of their schedule off to a good start.

“It was a good team win,” said GC coach Tod Murphy afterwards.  Everyone played, and the shooting opportunities were abundant.

Eric Demers (20) and Garrisson Duvivier (15) paced the Scots in limited minutes.

Gordon (6-5) struggled early and trailed, 12-5, after 3 ½ minutes.  “We started poorly but finally got it together defensively,” recalled Coach Murphy.  “I keep telling our guys that our defense ignites our offense.  I definitely think that’s what happened today.”

Parker Omslaer jams

The Lions (4-7) fell into a six-minute drought while GC erased the seven-point deficit by running up sixteen unanswered points.  The Scots had four assisted layups to go with free throws by Eric Demers and three’s by Eric and Josh Crutchfield.  By the time the team from Quincy (MA) could score again they were behind, 21-12.

Gordon soon had a double-digit lead and never looked back.

The Lions were within ten (51-41) seven minutes into the second half but the Scots second unit came on and pushed the lead to twenty.  ENC had no response on this afternoon.

“Our second team did a great job,” added Coach Murphy.  “Josh (Ribeiro) and Parker (Omslaer) played huge today.  Crutch (Josh Crutchfield) hit a couple of big shots.  We need to have that second unit playing well if we’re going to be a championship team.  We can’t expect our starters to be great every single night.”

Jake Hart heavily guarded by Lions

Senior Jake Hart was a spark off the bench.  He had six points in twenty-two minutes of action.  Easily his longest time on-court this season.  “I can always count on Jake,” said Coach Murphy.  “Mr. Reliable.  I can put him in any spot on the court and he will do a great job.”

Sophomore Josh Rice led the way for ENC with thirteen points.

Some of the most entertaining games in my years of watching Gordon basketball have been against Eastern Nazarene.  The Lions always had players who could dazzle and they made ENC tough to beat.  Not seeing that on this year’s edition.

ENC, to be fair, have so far given their top five minutes to a freshman and four sophomores.

Jake Haar about to set up teammate Parker Omslaer

The Lions had nine shots blocked when they took shots from in close with Garrisson Duvivier and Parker Omslaer nearby.  Each had three rejections.

The most worrisome stat on the ENC stat sheet was personal fouls.  The Lions committed only SEVEN fouls during the entire game!  I have stats that go back over ten years and nothing comes close to that seven.

Why is that stat a problem?  It shows a lack of serious defense.  Gordon had plenty of room to operate just about anywhere.

Josh Rice had thirteen points for ENC

“ENC is not a bad team and I thought that we handled them pretty well.” said Coach Murphy.

There will be a trip to Quincy on February 10th and the Lions will have gained experience and should be expected to perform better in front of their active home student section.

Efficiency Chart

Eric Demers 23 (20 points)

Garrisson Duvivier (15 pts,8 rebounds)

Josh Rice 12 (13 pts)

Jaren Yang 11 (6 assists)

Jake Haar 11 (9 pts,3 assists)

Gordon 113

ENC 51

Box from the game

(All pictures above and below will enlarge when you click on them.)

Jaren Yang makes a fancy layup

Matt Valles finishes

Noah Cheney

Josh Ribeiro tries to get past Andrew Mitchell

Josh Crutchfield (10) looks to pass

Josh Crutchfield in close

Jake Hart (#15)

Eric Demers fakes out a defender

Garrisson Duvivier gets a layup

young fan

 

Leave a comment

Filed under ENC

Gordon warms up and whips Whittier 97-85

Jaren Yang (16 points)

Jake Haar (16 points)

(Amesbury MA) Nice finish to 2017.

Gordon defeated Whittier, 97-85, on Saturday afternoon in California.

The Scots (5-5) rallied back in the first half and gained separation with an eight-point run in the second half, to down the Poets (3-8).

GC split their two games in the Golden State, losing to Redlands on Thursday.

The Scots played badly against Redlands in an 87-56 thrashing but were very impressive today against Whittier (3-8).

The best part?  West Coaster’s Jaren Yang (San Francisco) and Jake Haar (Huntington Beach) had their best games of the season.

The Scots trailed by seven (17-10) 5 ½ minutes into the game but seven points from Eric Demers and a putback by Parker Omslaer led to a 19-19 tie two minutes later.

In the second half, GC gained separation.  They took a 66-64 lead with ten minutes left and turned it into a double-digit spread (74-64) in less than a minute.  Three’s by Josh Ribeiro and Noah Szilagyi, surrounded a steal by Josh Crutchfield that led Noah to a layup, provided the breakaway offense.

Whittier, which played the night before, did not have the legs to make a run at Gordon the rest of the way.

Efficiency Chart

Victor Nwaba 28 (26 points,8 rebounds)

Garrisson Duvivier 21 (12 pts,12 rebs)

Eric Demers 18 (20 pts)

Jaren Yang 18 (16 pts, 4/4 3’s)

Jake Haar 17 (16 pts)

Gordon 117

Whittier 81

Eric Demers had seventeen points in the first half.

Gordon will return to action on January 4th against Western New England in Chicopee (MA).  Snow is forecast for that day.  Just sayin!

The Scots have ten games scheduled for January including six at home.

I did not spring for the $5 Whittier wanted in order to let me watch the game.  They did have free audio.

Box from the game

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Gordon fails to thaw out in 87-56 loss in California to Redlands

Josh Crutchfield had a career-high eleven points against Redlands.

(Sellersville PA) Sometimes it takes a while to adjust to weather that is at least fifty degrees warmer than where you are coming from.

The team from California (Redlands) had no such problem. They were warm from the get-go and ran away from still-chilled Gordon, 87-56, on Thursday afternoon.

The Bulldogs (3-6) couldn’t miss while the visitors from frigid Wenham had an alarmingly cold performance.

The home team led from beginning to end riding extremely accurate three-point shooting.  Redlands had separation by halftime (42-24) and bench-clearing kicked in during the second half.

The first-half, long-range shooting differential gives you the game in a nutshell: Redland (9-for-14), Gordon (1-for-9).

There were points to be had but Gordon (4-5) couldn’t cash in.  Redlands, on the other hand, broke the bank!  Eight different Bulldogs had success from beyond the arc.

Freshman Josh Crutchfield (11) was the only player to reach double figures for GC.  Josh lives about an hour away from Redlands in Ladera Ranch.  He may have had a cheering section on hand.

Senior Steve Vampatella rejected a Redlands shot.

Eric Demers came into the game averaging 22 points per game.  Redlands junior Trevor Baker held Eric to a quiet two points in the first half when this game slipped away from the Scots.  Eric finished with a 4-for-15 afternoon.  The Scots visit nearby Whittier on Saturday (6PM our time) and will be hoping that Eric returns to the 18-for-31 form he displayed in GC’s two previous wins.

Efficiency Chart

Joey Sponheim 25 (9-for-14, 23 points)

Trevor Baker 19 (9 assists, 11 points)

David Menary 17 (15 points)

Garrisson Duvivier 14 (11 rebounds)

Redlands 108

Gordon 51

Low grades for the Redlands feed.  The stopping and going was enough to give you a headache.  On the other hand, the way the game was going it may have been better to not see most of it.

Trying to grasp the purpose of the Bulldogs full-court pressure in the closing minutes, already up by thirty.

I did see enough of the game to catch Steve Vampatella’s block down the stretch.

I was also able to see Josh Ribeiro on the Gordon bench but inactive.  He is a very important contributor to the Scots.

Boxscore

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Redlands