By Peter McClelland
(Wenham) The Scots rode Mike Herr’s (sophomore – Lampeter PA) hot hand to a win over visiting Eastern Nazarene, 75-59, on Saturday afternoon at the Bennett Center to capture their first Commonwealth Coast Conference victory.
Last time we saw Mike Herr play (against Wheaton) he was getting plenty of attention from one of the best defenses in Division 3. An assortment of rushed, off-balanced and desperation attempts turned into a 1-for-9 evening and three points. What a difference two days made! ENC gave him shot openings that he took full advantage of – 6 three’s and 11-for-17 shooting overall. I saw shades of graduated Hayes Murray (First Team CCC last year) in Mike’s performance. The 6’5” sophomore finished with 31 points.
“Coming off that loss to Wheaton I was pleased to see that we played hard and competed,” said Coach Schauer. “What concerned me was our lack of discipline on defense. That lack of discipline added up to our getting badly outrebounded (41-23) again.” (The place where ENC’s dominance really showed up was on the offensive boards where the visitors had 18 and the Scots 5.) “We’re just too passive right now but we’ll get better.”
The snowy conditions lessened the crowd but didn’t keep some of the avid Crusader followers from making the trek from Wollaston. When a team loses its first ten games they find out who really supports them. These kids gave plenty of vocal support long after their team had a chance in this one. They are true fans.
Although Mike Herr’s 31 points were more than expected (he averages 18 points) the way ENC played held surprisingly true to their stats coming in. They usually give up 77 points, in this one they gave up 75. They usually score 58; in this one they got 59. Senior Larry Kearney (6’8”) has been averaging 17, he got 17. So to win the (0-10) Crusaders needed to improve and they didn’t.
ENC’s first two baskets were on converted rebounds by Larry Kearney and Jean-Paul Marcellus (6’4” freshman) and they jumped in front 4-2. That lead wouldn’t last long. Jerry Logan (sophomore – Marietta GA) started to score and create and the Scots spurted ahead 18-8 at 14 minutes. A little while later Justin Kaufman (freshman – Redding CT) sent Scott Allenby (senior – Proctor VT) in for a lay-up and then it was Justin’s turn to finish lay-ups on feeds from Scott and Jerry. This action put Gordon in front 24-11 with nine minutes left. The teams swapped baskets the rest of the half. The Scots lead at halftime was 41-25.
ENC did not improve either on offense or on defense in the second half. They were, however, still hanging around thanks to their abilities on the offensive glass and at the foul line. At 14:40 they were down 48:35. But then Aaron Vogelzang (junior- Jericho VT) slipped under the basket and snuck in a reverse spin lay-up. Two Mike Herr treys later that lead jumped to 56-35 and with 13 minutes left the winner was known and only the final margin wasn’t. Only a run of 7 points by the Crusaders in the last minute narrowed the final spread and made this one seem a bit closer than it actually was.
So the Scots are now 6-5. Next stop is New London (NH) and Colby-Sawyer on Thursday evening. Gordon nearly beat them up there last year. They have a phenomenal CCC winning streak at home. Should be interesting.
The glove – John Beebe – makes anyone he guards work a lot harder than they want to.
I went to a basketball game and a wrestling match broke out – Pete Hassler – His entanglement with Will Harris of ENC behind the play had the whistles blowing.
Get open I’ll get it to you – Justin Kaufman – seven assists.
Who’s the new guy? – Jesse Freedman – The Mount Kisco (NY) freshman made his debut. I guarantee you that if the student body had been on hand they would have been pleading for him to put one up.
Good News/Bad News Freshman Version – Jon Marstaller (freshman-Naples ME) – 4 steals and 3 rebounds in 30 minutes and Jean-Paul Marcellus (freshman – 6’4”) 12 rebounds and 7 turnovers in 36 minutes.