Category Archives: Endicott

Gordon upsets Endicott 83-77 on Senior Day

Eric Demers (35 points) ends up with the ball in the closing seconds

Xahn Frater and Josh Crutchfield celebrate with the Gordon student section

Eric Demers off a screen

(Wenham MA) This one didn’t get away like the OT loss in January did.

The Scots (10-9) took the lead for good with just under three minutes left and held off Endicott, 83-77, on Saturday afternoon.

“Obviously winning a game is a great thing,” said Gordon coach Tod Murphy postgame, “but when you do it against a team like Endicott, that’s pretty special.”

The Gulls (15-5) have the best record (9-2) in the Commonwealth Coast Conference despite the loss.

The records, however, are irrelevant to the excitement each of these games between EC and GC creates.

Rebound battle between Matt McDevitt (14 rebounds) and Parker Omslaer (13 rebounds)

“What a great college-game atmosphere,” said Endicott coach Kevin Bettencourt afterwards.  “We look forward to this game just like they do.”

The crowd was active.  The seats were filled and Gordon’s two seniors (Eric Demers and AJ Terry) were honored pre-game.

“The crowd was amazing,” added junior Josh Crutchfield.  “It felt like we were on top of the world.”

Eric Demers (35 points) continues to be productive despite drawing special defensive attention.

Eric has now scored at least thirty points in eleven straight games.  “What he did tonight is standard for him,” said Coach Murphy.

Asked about the game afterwards, Eric deflected the credit away from himself: “We stick together.  I think we’ve really matured over the last few weeks.  The beginning of the season was “get the ball to Eric and see what happens.”  Now we’re starting to jell as a team and trust one another.  That’s what it takes to win games.”

Today’s game featured eight ties and twelve lead changes.  Plenty to stir the hopes of each team!

However, with 2:53 left in the game, the last of those lead changes took place as Eric drained a three in front of the Gordon student section and the Scots were in front, 76-74.

Eric Demers drains the go-ahead three

“We had some shots late that we were comfortable with that just didn’t go in,” said Coach Bettencourt.  “Credit Gordon, they made a few extra plays down the stretch.”

Keith Brown (26 points)

Senior Keith Brown paced the Gulls with twenty-six points while freshman Jalen Echevarria added eighteen.

Junior Matt McDevitt also tallied eighteen points and had some impressive additional stats to go with his point production; fourteen rebounds and seven assists.  He only missed four shots.  It was his second double/double of the season.

The defeat ended a six-game win streak for the Gulls.  Gordon has now won two straight.

Coach Murphy ventured into new territory during our conversation afterwards: “Our defense made the difference tonight and I haven’t said that all season long.  We recognized where their shooters were for the most part and made plays when we needed to.”

In the January loss, Endicott picked the Gordon zone apart (28 assists) and forced Coach Murphy to abandon that defense.  That didn’t happen tonight.  The Gulls had only fourteen assists and the zone was still in place at game’s end.

Xahn Frater and Jalen Echevarria

Freshman Xahn Frater saw his longest minutes of the season (21) and contributed six points, all in the second half.

“Xahn and Zach (Bennett) stepped up today,” said Josh Crutchfield.  “They acted like they were seniors!”

Parker Omslaer (13 points/13 rebounds) had his fourth double/double of the season.  A key play for the 6-11 junior was his defense in a late Endicott possession.  Speedster Jalen Echevarria (5-9) drove toward the basket looking for points and/or a foul.  He got neither.  “When he came in, I just wanted to stay straight up,” said Parker.  “I was able to contest the shot without fouling.”

Parker Omslaer (13 points) jams

“When Parker jumps straight up, he has such an impact,” added Coach Murphy.

Eric Demers: “You do all that practicing for moments like this.”

Coach Murphy: “I can’t say enough about our two seniors.  Tonight, AJ was so active, rebounding and blocking shots.”

Coach Bettencourt: “This is the fun part of the season.  We’re getting into February and some big games are coming up.”

Josh Crutchfield: “Endicott has a wonderful team.  It’s always great to beat them.”

Parker Omslaer: “Out of anyone, Endicott is the one I want to beat.  That last game with them is still in my memory.  I appreciate all the support the crowd gave today.”

Senior AJ Terry was honored pre-game

AJ Terry: “I think we won it on the defensive end.  We got big rebounds late in the game.  I fouled out but my teammates stepped up.  Best crowd of the year.  I hope they show up for some more games.”

Zach Quanico: “It was surreal with all the people here.  To the upper classmen this game means a lot and we have to understand that.”

Justin Yu: “It is always a great game with them.  A three-point lead against Endicott is nothing.”

Nice gathering afterwards to honor Eric and AJ.

Two more regular-season home games left; Roger Williams (11th) and UNE (19th).  The Scots travel to Western New England on Wednesday.

Box from the game

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

Sam Johnson, Cody Hunt, Josh Ribeiro, Graham Tienhaara, Garrisson Duvivier

Mike Schnackenberg and family

Matt McDevitt (18 points)

Josh Crutchfield in for a layup

Jalen Echevarria

Isaiah Godwin dives for a loose ball

Garrett Sattazahn (14 points)

Eric Demers tips in a rebound

Eric Demers leans in for a foul

Eric Demers draws a foul

Eric Demers was 10-for-10 from the free throw line

Eric Demers and Jordan Pettway

Eric Demers and family

Eric Demers three on the way

Cody Hunt and Josh Ribeiro

AJ Terry and family

Billy Arsenault

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

Endicott edges Gordon in OT 88-86

Two free throws by Matt McDevitt with one second left sealed the game for Endicott in overtime

Eric Demers (31 points) works against two Gulls

(Beverly MA) Both teams needed the rally caps in this one.

Endicott went down by ten (39-29) in the first half.

Gordon went down by thirteen (70-57) in the second half.

But in the end, it was Matt McDevitt’s two free throws with one second left in overtime that won it for the Gulls, 88-86.

“It’s always an interesting one with them,” said Endicott coach Kevin Bettencourt afterwards.  “It’s a great rivalry and we’ve had some crazy finishes.”

loose ball

“It was a typical Gordon/Endicott game,” added GC coach Tod Murphy.

The Scots (6-6) now have a 1-3 record in the Commonwealth Coast Conference while Endicott (10-4) is 4-1 in the CCC.

Two of the CCC’s best players (Keith Brown and Eric Demers) had 31-point nights.

“Keith is our go-to guy,” said Coach Bettencourt.  “He’s been great for us his whole career.  We’re really lucky to have him.”

Keith Brown (31 points) shoots over AJ Terry

Keith rebounded from a seven-point game in the Gulls 71-70 loss to Nichols on Tuesday to fill the stat sheet against Gordon.  Beyond the thirty-one points, Keith had seven steals, six rebounds and five assists.  His most important contribution to the Endicott win may have been his steal near the end of regulation.  Josh Crutchfield was by his defender and heading for the basket when Keith slid over and stole the ball to preserve the tie game.

Eric continues to be a consistent point getter.  Opposing coaches continue to marvel.  “He’s leading the country in scoring for good reason,” said Coach Bettencourt.  “Some of the ones he made were NBA-type shots.”

When Gordon was down by thirteen (70-57) with six minutes left, it looked like “turn-on-the-bus” time for sure.  Endicott busted away from a tie game (53-53) with six assisted baskets against the Gordon zone.  The Scots were down but not out.  Coach Murphy switched to a man-to-man defense and Eric connected on three 3’s as GC tied the score 72-72 with two minutes left.

“I’m proud of the way we battled back from being down thirteen,” said Coach Murphy.  “We didn’t give up.”

In the last minute of overtime the Gulls had a three-point lead but AJ Terry’s clutch three from the top of the key evened things, 86-86.

Eric Demers shoots a three in the final seconds of overtime

Seconds later the Scots had a chance for the win as Eric fired from the left side.  The shot missed but Parker Omslaer crashed the boards from the other side and put in the rebound at the buzzer.  Not so fast!  Parker, to get the rebound, plowed over Endicott’s Matt McDevitt with one second left and was called for a foul.  Matt sank both free throws to provide the two-point margin of victory.  AJ put up a beyond half-court shot at the final buzzer that hit the backboard as the game ended.

“It was a tough one to swallow,” said Eric Demers afterwards.  “I like it better when we make the final shot.”

Senior Jimmy Campbell (Hamilton-Wenham) was huge in the first half.  In only eleven minutes he put in ten points and had seven rebounds.

Matt McDevitt (24 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists)

Junior Matt McDevitt (24 points) was very good long range.  The former Maine player-of-the-year added six rebounds and six assists.

Parker Omslaer had another double/double – 12 points and 13 rebounds.  Gordon needs him to be able to play long minutes…….and stay out of foul trouble.

This may have been freshman Garrett Sattazahn’s best game.  He played all but three minutes of the game and had fourteen points and six assists.  When the Scots went man-to-man, he ended up with Keith Brown.

Sophomore David Massillon saw his first action in over a month.

Crucial stats of the game?

Garrett Sattazahn (14 points, 6 assists)

Although the Scots shot well (50%), they had twenty-one turnovers against a team that wasn’t pressing in the backcourt.  Trying to get the ball to places that were well covered was the primary culprit.  Gordon did tie its season high in assists (18) so there were some good connections.  Garrett Sattazahn set up Parker Omslaer for a dunk with a nifty no-look pass.

Although the Gulls did not shoot well (43%) they passed very well (28 assists).  They also had fourteen steals.

Coach Bettencourt: “I’m glad our team hung in there.  It’s always tough when you lose the lead and have to come back.  Our team made one extra play.  It was an exciting finish.”

Eric Demers gets a rare open shot

Eric Demers: “I like the way we competed after our tough loss to Western New England.  It’s always a roller coaster with a young team.  Any night we show fight we’ve got to be encouraged by it.”

Coach Murphy: “We just need to get better.  That man-to-man defense worked because they had a non-shooter in there and Parker could sag away from him and help defensively.  Roger Williams (Gordon’s next opponent – Saturday) has five shooters so I don’t know what we’ll do.”

Box from the game

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

Isaiah Godwin

Jalen Echevarria

Jalen Echevarria and AJ Terry

Jimmy Campbell – 10 points, 7 rebounds

Josh Crutchfield about to be double-teamed at the end of regulation

Parker Omslaer shoots over Matt McDevitt

Billy Arsenault

Billy Arsenault passes to Keith Brown

David Massillon plays in his second game of the season

Garrett Sattazahn makes a no-look pass

Gordon women celebrate a win over Endicott

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

Gordon drops 2nd straight with 80-71 loss at Endicott

Gordon coach Tod Murphy and Endicott coach Kevin Bettencourt after today’s game

Keith Brown (25 points) and Garrisson Duvivier (20 points)

(Beverly MA) The atmosphere was at the tournament level.

Large crowd and a persistent noise that elevated or dropped as each possession ended.

Fortunately for Gordon, the tournament atmosphere wasn’t the real thing.  They did lose to Endicott (80-71) on Saturday afternoon but it was “only” a regular season game.

The Commonwealth Coast Conference tourney begins on Tuesday: Gordon (21-4) hosts Wentworth while Western New England will be coming to Endicott (17-8).

In early January, when the Scots faced Nichols and Endicott in back-to-back games, there was reason for concern.  Nichols had ten straight wins versus Gordon while Endicott had eliminated the Scots from the CCC tournament the previous year.

Senior Joe Shehadi puts up a three. The Gulls were 17-for-36.

But Gordon won those games and the victories became part of a fifteen-game winning streak.

But that was in January.

Now, in February the repeat of the back-to-backs hasn’t gone well.  The Scots carry a two-game losing streak as they head into the tournament on Tuesday night at the Bennett Center.

“We’ve got a very good team,” said Gordon coach Tod Murphy after the loss.  “We’ve had a bad week.  If we’ll stay together and play together, we’ll win together.”

Endicott came into today’s game on a two-game slide after losses to Roger Williams and Western New England.

Garrisson Duvivier in for two

“We’ve had a couple of tough losses,” explained Endicott coach Kevin Bettencourt,  “but we had answers today.  It hasn’t always been that way.”

The large Senior’s Day crowd saw the top two teams in the conference in 3-point shooting percentage.

On this afternoon, however, the long-range shot was pure gold for the Gulls (17-for-36) and fool’s gold (4-for-20) for the team from Wenham.

“We didn’t defend in the first half,” said Coach Murphy describing his team’s zone defense.  “We gave them too many 3-point shots.  Most of them were open looks.”

Parker Omslaer guarded by Matt McDevitt

Sophomore Matt McDevitt (20 points) connected six times (in eleven tries) from beyond the arc.  Matt had a similar performance in the CCC tourney last year against Gordon. However, in EC’s January loss to GC, Matt was 0-for-6 on three’s and finished with only two points.  Hard to figure the extremes!

Much of today’s game was played at the one-possession level.  Gordon, however, was usually the team needing a good possession to catch up.

Because of suspect outside shooting, the Scots concentrated on creating offense through Garrisson Duvivier in close.  With less concern over long shots, the Gulls could send help to protect the inside.

Garrisson still managed twenty points against the tight defense of seniors Vinny Clifford and Nick Thibeault.

Garrisson Duvivier and Vinny Clifford

“Garrisson is one of the best players we’ve had to guard in my five years,” said Coach Bettencourt. “Vinny/Nick did great.  He had to work for everything he got.”

With 4:10 left, the Gulls had a slender, 72-70, lead.

Where the game was lost? The Scots had just one point the rest of the way and it wasn’t for lack of opportunities.  Four missed three’s and two turnovers ruined any GC comeback plans.

The Gulls, on the other hand, turned up good offense down the stretch.  A layup (Matt McDevitt) and two free throws (Jordan Pettway) boosted the EC lead to six (76-70) and then two killer three’s (Keith Brown & Vinny Clifford) sealed the deal for the home team.

Eric Demers (18 points) loose for a three

“Garrisson and Eric (Demers) didn’t look like they had their legs today,” said Coach Murphy.  “I’ve probably been playing them too many minutes but it’s the end of the season and we need guys to dig down deep right now.”

Junior Keith Brown led Endicott with twenty-five points on 10-for-15 shooting.  He also handed out five assists.  The Gulls finished with twenty assists.

Garrisson Duvivier put thirteen rebounds together with his twenty points.

Rough afternoon for junior Eric Demers.  Despite getting eighteen points, it took him twenty-one shots to get there.  He was a very uncharacteristic 1-for-10 from beyond the arc.

Noah Szilagyi (15 points) shoots over Keith Brown

Senior Noah Szilagyi continued his hot shooting making six of nine attempts for fifteen points.

Endicott honored seniors; John Homsey, Nick Thibeault, Vinny Clifford, and Joe Shehadi before the game.

Both teams had plenty of vocal fan support on hand.

Coach Bettencourt: “We’re hoping to carry this momentum into next week.”

Coach Murphy: “We can still go out there and win three in a row and get to the NCAA tournament.”

Delighted to see the Gordon women pull the upset of the year in the CCC with a 62-60 thriller over first-place Endicott.  It was in February of 2005 that Gordon’s last win over EC happened in the CCC semifinals.  Fourteen years!

Box from the game

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

Brooke Dyson after Gordon defeated Endicott for the first time in FOURTEEN years.

David Massillon jams on Nick Thibeault

Eric Demers defended by John Homsey (25)

Eric Demers looks to pass

Garrisson Duvivier looks for an opening against Vinny Clifford

Garrisson Duvivier defended by Vinny Clifford

Joe Shehadi and Josh Crutchfield

Jordan Pettway

Jordan Pettway and Eric Demers

Nick Thibeault, Garrisson Duvivier, and Matt McDevitt (34)

Noah Szilagyi tries to get away from Matthew Catizone

Vinny Clifford and Keith Brown block out Garrisson Duvivier

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott, Wentworth

Gordon holds on for a 72-71 win over Endicott

Noah Szilagyi (14 points) drains the eventual game winner.

(Wenham MA) This one was good to the last shot.

Matt McDevitt (34) takes the last shot with Parker Omslaer defending

Good thing for Gordon that Matt McDevitt’s layup over Parker Omslaer at the final buzzer wasn’t good because that miss preserved a 72-71 win for the Scots over Endicott on Thursday night.

The Gulls (10-5) trailed by a point and had the ball with thirteen seconds left. Plenty of shooters to choose from but it was sophomore Matt McDevitt in close for the win-or-lose last shot.

Keith Brown (21 points) shoots over Parker Omslaer

“I was worried that Keith Brown was going to get it at the high post,” recalled 6-11 Parker Omslaer, “and I wanted to make sure that he didn’t get it there.  But when the kid (Matt McDevitt) rolled to the basket I just wanted to stop him but make sure I didn’t foul.”

Mission accomplished defensively.

The shot was hurried and didn’t go in and Gordon (14-1) had its 13th straight win.  They haven’t lost in 55 days!

“Just another typical Gordon/Endicott game,” said GC coach Tod Murphy.  “Right down to the last shot.”

Gordon has won three of the last four matches with Endicott including two in overtime.

Coach Murphy was surprised by the lack of points.  “I don’t know whether we’re good defensively.  I didn’t expect low-scoring games against Nichols and then Endicott tonight.”

Eric Demers (22 points) shoots over Joe Shehadi (10) in the first half

Both teams had some cold-shooting segments during which the other team took advantage.

Endicott was up 13-5 (16:06) and then trailed 29-20 (7:00).

In the second half, Gordon led 47-34 (17:01) only to fall behind 57-56 (10:10).

With 5 ½ minutes left, the Scots seemed to be in good shape (69-60).  The home team was ahead with 3:40 to go (72-65).

But Gordon stayed stuck on 72 for the last three minutes and forty seconds!  Eric Demers, Garrisson Duvivier, and Parker Omslaer each had shot attempts that didn’t fall.

Eric Demers had a career-high thirteen rebounds

During Gordon’s offensive lull the visitors from Beverly nearly erased the entire lead thanks to a Matt McDevitt layup, and two free throws and a layup by Keith Brown (21 points).

But in the mix of Endicott’s late surge Matt missed two three’s and the final shot during the last two minutes. That was enough to enable GC to hold on.

Good crowd even with neither school in session.

One of the referees said to me, “How can you beat this, good basketball for free?”

Eric Demers paced GC with twenty-two points.  Did he shoot well?  Not so much.  “Eric couldn’t hit a shot at times, but he did make some big ones,” said Coach Murphy.

To limit an evaluation of ED to points is an injustice.  He is second in the Commonwealth Coast Conference in steals and he had two more tonight.  He had five assists.  Ball hog?  Not so.  Biggest Eric surprise of the night?  Thirteen rebounds!  He had never had double figures before.  Big game, big contributor in a variety of ways.

Garrisson Duvivier sends a no-look pass

Garrisson Duvivier reached double figures in rebounds (10) and points (14) for the 12th time this season.  He has also moved to within three points of being Gordon’s 2nd leading all-time scorer.

Noah Szilagyi (14 points) was extremely accurate tonight missing only one shot.  His three with 3:40 left turned into the eventual game winner.

I asked Parker about the success the Scots have had so far: “I think that we have a different mindset.  Last year we had some trouble closing out games.  This year we’re going in there with all our strength and it’s working right now.”

Parker Omslaer shoots as a large crowd looks on

Coach Murphy on Gordon’s zone defense: “We’re figuring the defense out a little more each game.  At times we just don’t get where we’re supposed to be.  The defense will work if we do it correctly.”

The Scots stunned perennial champ Nichols, 76-72, five days ago.  “It would have really hurt to lose tonight’s game after the big win at Nichols,” added Coach Murphy.

Saturday afternoon we’ll see Roger Williams at the Bennett Center.  RWU has a win over Endicott.

“We haven’t played our best basketball yet and we have defeated two of the best teams in the CCC,” said Coach Murphy.  That “best” game by the Scots could well be needed on Saturday afternoon.

Box from the game

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

Avelino Damoura (6 points) elevates for three over Keith Brown

David Massillon in close

Eric Demers gets fouled by Keith Brown late in the game

Matt McDevitt ready to inbounds the ball with 13 second left

Nick Thibeault (22) crowds Garrisson Duvivier

Eric Demers shoots a free throw late in the game

Eric Demers uses a Garrisson Duvivier screen

Garrisson Duvivier (14 points) in for two

Jake Haar in open space

Josh Crutchfield (10) corrals a loose ball

Josh Ribeiro (24) chases Jordan Pettway (4)

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

Endicott ends Gordon’s season 86-70 in the CCC semi-finals

Matt McDevitt lifts a corner three. The Endicott freshman hit five 3’s in the second half

Eric Demers was well covered by the Gulls

(Wenham MA) Gordon had beaten their neighbors from Beverly twice this season but a third time didn’t happen as the Scots fell to Endicott, 86-70, on Thursday night in the conference semi-finals.

The battle was for the right to face top-seed Nichols on Saturday afternoon for the Commonwealth Coast Conference title.

The Gulls (19-8) have two losses to the Bison this season but as one spectator was overheard saying after tonight’s game, “If they play the way they did tonight, they might have a chance.”

The two previous games between the Scots (18-9) and the Gulls were down-to-the-wire close.  This game appeared headed in the same direction in the second half.  Neither team had heated up for a serious run and EC only had a 56-54 lead with 10:45 left.

But less than four minutes later this game had gotten away from Gordon.  What happened?  The Gulls put a 17-2 run together, sparked by lights-out, long-range shooting by freshman Matt McDevitt.

Matt, who was the Player-of-the-Year in Maine (Greeley) last year, had four three’s in the separation segment.  Senior Joey Villa had an old-fashioned three as part of this decisive run.

Sophomore Keith Brown had a 19-point second half

The player who didn’t score a point in the run was Keith Brown, but the EC sophomore had nineteen points during the rest of the second half to keep the Scots from getting any late-game, comeback ideas.

Gordon, on this night, landed only eight 3-pointers while the visitors drained fifteen from long range.

“We didn’t play very well,” said Coach Tod Murphy afterwards, “but that’s a really good team.”

The Gulls defense was impressive: “We don’t get held to 70 points very often but that happened tonight,” said Coach Murphy.

The Scots had only 54 points in California against Redlands during Christmas break with tonight’s 70 being the second lowest of this season.

Eric Demers shoots over Joe Shehadi as Coach Tod Murphy watches

The Gordon students turned out and Endicott had some folks at the Bennett Center too.  Some of the missing EC students may have been in Bristol (RI) tonight watching the EC women in the CCC semifinals against Roger Williams.

One of the keys to the EC win was doing a better job defending Eric Demers. In the first two games Eric had 33 points and 25 points.  This time around, 14 points.  He had defenders everywhere he went tonight, and the rare open shots weren’t falling.

Eric reached 1000 points this season and tonight he moved into 21st place (1056 points) ahead of Park Thomas.  Jim Petty is the all-time Gordon scorer with 1902 points.  Eric is only a sophomore.  You have to like his chances. But we’ll see what happens.

Garrisson Duvivier (20 points) looks to shoot over Vinny Clifford

Garrison Duvivier continued to do what he does best; reach double figures in points and rebounds (19th time this season) and discourage shots around the basket. Joe Shehadi (5-10) tried one with GD nearby and the sound of his hand blocking the ball was like a volleyball spike!

Garrisson joined the 1000-point club this season and he now has 1401 points.  He is currently in 8th place on the all-time list passing Tim Kehoe tonight.  I mentioned Jim Petty’s all-time total (1902) earlier.  We’ll see how Garrisson does in his senior season.

The last game is always memorable because it’s the last look we get at the departing seniors.  The Scots lose four; Jaren Yang, Jake Hart, Steven Vampatella, and Graham Tienhaara.

Noah Szilagyi gets a steal

My wife Julie and I usually appear at the Gordon graduation in May to say our farewells and to take a few photos of the graduating players.

A special thanks to Gordon coach Tod Murphy for talking to me after games whether they were wins or losses.  Most coaches have plenty to say after wins but will retreat to the locker-room after losses.  Not Tod.  Class act!

Efficiency Chart

Keith Brown 27 (25 points,12 rebounds, no turnovers)

Garrisson Duvivier 25 (20 points,13 rebounds)

Joe Shehadi 23 (12 points,8 rebounds)

Matt McDevitt 20 (19 points)

Jaren Yang 19 (11 points,7 assists)

Endicott 101

Gordon 79

Box from the game

(All of the pictures will enlarge considerably when you click on them.)

Jaren Yang with Coach Tod Murphy

Steven Vampatella and Graham Tienhaara finished their GC careers tonight

Freshmen point guards Josh Crutchfield and Jordan Pettway

Jaren Yang (four-year starter)

Eric Demers (14 points) shoots a three over Joey Villa

Joey Villa guards Jaren Yang

Garrisson Duvivier gets fouled by Matt McDevitt

Junior Jake Haar (11 points)

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

Gordon scores 23 straight points to reach/control OT and shock Endicott 85-77

Garrisson Duvivier overwhelmed Endicott with 31 points, 17 rebounds, and 6 blocks

(Amesbury MA) Gordon (15-7) scored twenty-three straight points against Endicott and shocked the Gulls in overtime, 85-77, in Beverly on Wednesday night.

The GC (11-4 in the CCC) win gives them control of second place in the Commonwealth Coast Conference, for the moment, with three games left.

Those two wins against the Gulls (15-7) mean that the team from Wenham owns the tie-breaker over Endicott (10-5 in the CCC) should that become relevant in the CCC tournament seedings.

The Scots needed sixteen of those unanswered twenty-three points to reach overtime.  The next seven got Gordon off to a lead in overtime that did in the Gulls.

I decided to believe the forecast (snow) and not my lying eyes (rain) and watched this terrific game from the shores of the Merrimack River in Amesbury.

Eric Demers (25 points) heated up when the game was on the line

Tonight’s game featured two unbelievable scoring droughts, one for each team.  Fortunately, for our Scots they had their shooting famine first and were able to recover.  The Gulls weren’t so lucky.

Garrisson Duvivier set his best-game standard to a new high with a 31-points, 17-rebounds, six-blocks stat line.  None of those numbers were career highs by themselves but together they did the trick at least as far as the Efficiency Chart revealed. Garrisson also moved into 10th place on the all-time Gordon career scoring list ahead of my friend Gene Fitzgerald.  Garrisson is now one point out of 9th place.

It took career games by Hans Miersma and Jason Dempsey, three seasons ago, to take out Endicott in Gordon’s last win in Beverly.  That game also went into overtime. It was also the first game that EC coach Kevin Bettencourt coached on the home court.

In this season’s first matchup with Endicott, the Scots were forced to come from behind to reach overtime.  Once in OT the Scots put together an eight-point lead and EC couldn’t recover.

The sizable droughts by both teams were eye-catchers.  With the Gulls in front, 62-52, with 12:28 left in the game, the Scots piled into the scoring freezer.  For how long?  Six minutes and eleven seconds!  In that hard-to-watch segment Gordon missed all seven shot attempts and had three turnovers.

It was dreadful enough to watch that my wife talked of leaving the room!  That’s dreadful!

The good news?  Endicott wasn’t a whole lot better.  They only expanded their lead to fifteen (67-52) and there was still over six minutes left.

That should have been enough for the Gulls, however, but it wasn’t because their time in the freezer was ahead and it would cost them the game.

With 4:44 left EC led, 72-56.  Take care of the ball, make a few shots and this one’s history.  The problem was that they didn’t make ANY shots for the rest of regulation, not one!  They missed all seven shot attempts including five 3’s.

Josh Ribeiro sent the game into overtime

The Gulls wisely used plenty of clock in each possession but just couldn’t make a shot.  Gordon, down the other end, was also more deliberate but their shots (4-for-7) began to fall.  Eric Demers, who had been treated for frostbite he was so cold (Just kidding), hit a jump shot, two three’s, and assisted on Josh Ribeiro’s game-tying jump shot with fifteen seconds left in regulation.

In the overtime, the EC scoring freeze continued plus there was way too much Garrisson Duvivier for the Gulls to handle.  The remarkable junior tallied GC’s first seven points and kept two possessions alive with offensive rebounds.  Endicott, on this evening, had no answers and suffered a tough loss.

Vinny Clifford finally ended the 8+ minutes of scoring frustration for the Gulls three minutes into overtime.

Eric Demers finished with twenty-five points.  He was a cool 3-for-12 from long range but two of those 3’s were part of the late-game run that pushed this game into OT.

Gordon is 10-2 in the new year and have won five of their last six games.

Trap game ahead!  Eastern Nazarene on Saturday afternoon.  The Lions may not make the playoffs, but this has been a rivalry that has been unrelated to win/loss records.  Scots beware!

Efficiency Chart

Garrisson Duvivier 46

Jaren Yang 20 (10 pts, 6 assists)

Nick Thibeault 18 (19 pts, 7 rebs)

Vinny Clifford 18 (14 pts, 7 rebs)

Gordon 100

Endicott 82

Box from the game

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott

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

Endicott too much for Gordon (82-65) on Senior Day

Senior Sam Johnson and his family honored before the game

Senior Sam Johnson and his family honored before the game

Kamahl Walker (29 points)

Kamahl Walker (29 points)

(Wenham MA) It didn’t go entirely the way we had hoped.

Senior Sam Johnson was indeed honored pregame on Senior Day but after that the Scots were supposed to get a win over the visiting Endicott Gulls.

The first part went off without a hitch but getting a victory over EC?  Not this time.

Endicott (17-4) never trailed in a convincing, 82-65, performance on Saturday afternoon before this season’s best crowd at the Bennett Center.

Kamahl Walker had sixteen points in the second half

Kamahl Walker had sixteen points in the second half

Kamahl Walker (29 points) did a wonderful impersonation of the Celtic’s Isaiah Thomas by driving past or shooting over most of the defenders he encountered.  The EC senior had sixteen points in the second half.

Late in the game, Gordon’s Jake Hart was isolated on Kamahl with the rest of his Endicott teammates spread out along the baseline.  Looked like the perfect time for him to drive but instead he pulled up for a three and made it.  What’s a defender to do?

While Endicott was shooting over 50% for the game, the Scots (12-9) struggled.  Trouble spot?  Outside shooting.  Noah Szilagyi has joined Eric Demers in the out-for-the-season category.  Their three-point accuracy was missed big-time against the Gulls.

Also of note is the cooling off of Jake Haar (12 points).  The GC sophomore has slipped to 6-for-20 over the last three games.  Because of the status of Gordon’s outside shooting, Jake has been forced into trying more three’s than usual and sometimes from places he normally wouldn’t shoot from.

Jake had twenty-three points in the one-point loss at Endicott.  That drew him the defense of EC’s Stephen Basden this time.

The Scots quickly were behind 14-5 and then 30-15.  Later in the first half it was 36-22 before GC put their best run of the day together by closing the deficit to 38-33 at halftime.

Christien Morneweck guards Sam Johnson

Christien Morneweck guards Sam Johnson

A triple by Jake Haar, a jumper by Josh Ribeiro, and a layup from Sam Johnson, plus free throws by Jake and Jake Hart provided the firepower in the late run.

The Gulls moved the lead back to double figures (44-33) early in the second half and Gordon was never able to challenge inside of nine points thereafter.

Sam Johnson and Daquan Sampson had double/doubles for their respective teams.

The efficiency charts reveals that statistically this was Gordon’s poorest outing of the season.  Fewer rebounds than usual and weak shooting were the chief culprits.

Efficiency

Kamahl Walker 31 (29 points, 3 steals)

Daquan Sampson 17 (13 points, 10 rebounds)

Sam Johnson 15 (13 points, 10 rebounds)

Chris Lipscomb 13 (9 points, 4 assists)

Max Motroni 11 (13 points)

Endicott 97

Gordon 52

Kamahl Walker and Sam Johnson before the game

Kamahl Walker and Sam Johnson before the game

The Scots (9-5) are currently sitting in 4th place in the Commonwealth Coast Conference one game ahead of Wentworth (8-6).  It is starting to look as if GC will be facing WIT in the post-season tournament.  Can Gordon do enough over the final four games to keep that spot and get a home game in the first round?

Last year’s two seniors, Richie Armand and Udoka Obiora, were in the house.

The crowd was terrific.  They made plenty of supportive noise even as the team they were there to cheer struggled.

Gordon will be at Roger Williams (Wednesday) and at Wentworth next Saturday.

My wife and I were pleased to enjoy the senior (Sam Johnson) celebration after the game.  It was nice to get to meet some of the parents of the players on this year’s team

At the gathering coach Tod Murphy credited Sam with being the piece that enabled Gordon to win the CCC title three seasons ago.  Sam joined the Scots in January of his freshman year.

Box from this game

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

Coach Tod Murphy and Sam Johnson

Coach Tod Murphy and Sam Johnson

Jaren Yang in front of the impressive GC turnout

Jaren Yang in front of the impressive GC turnout

Tussle for the ball

Tussle for the ball

Graham Tienhaara tries to block Kamahl Walker's shot

Graham Tienhaara tries to block Kamahl Walker’s shot

GC dance team

GC dance team

Garrisson Duvivier to the rim

Garrisson Duvivier to the rim

Kamahl Walker on the break

Kamahl Walker on the break

Chris Lipscomb on the drive

Chris Lipscomb on the drive

Sam Johnson positioned for a rebound

Sam Johnson positioned for a rebound

Daquan Sampson (double/double)

Daquan Sampson (double/double)

Game on!

Game on!

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott, Gordon men's basketball 2016-17

Gordon loses second tough one in three days 84-83 to Endicott

Kamahl Walker (22 points) and Jake Haar (23 points) go one-on-one

Kamahl Walker (22 points) and Jake Haar (23 points) go one-on-one

Game ends with the ball stuck!

Game ends with the ball stuck!

(Beverly MA) As a party of one, I couldn’t be prouder of the way the Scots played their last two games.

Hey, they were losses but after the initial disappointment the positives far outnumber the negatives.

Tonight, it was 84-83 to Endicott.  Two nights ago, it was 85-84 to Nichols.

In both games the outcome came down to the final possession.  A stop defeats Nichols while a clutch hoop downs Endicott.

But neither happened and the Gordon (6-6) losing streak reaches four.

Endicott is now 10-2 and I can’t wait for their get-together with Nichols (10-2) on Saturday (January 14th) at Endicott.

I can also not wait for Gordon’s rematch with the two of them.  The Efficiency rating for both games showed GC to be the better team statistically.  Now to make it happen on the scoreboard!

Tonight’s game with the Gulls had so many attention-getting stats.  Where do you start?

Jake Haar – career high (7) in made 3’s.

Jaren Yang – career high (9) in assists.

Gordon team – 27 assists (most in four years).

Noah Szilagyi (10 points) came off the bench taking and making

Noah Szilagyi (10 points) came off the bench taking and making

Gordon reserves (Noah Szilagyi, Jake Hart, Josh Ribeiro, Graham Tienhaara) – 12-for-15 totaling twenty-seven points.

What also was appealing about this game was how close it was.  The score was tied five times in each half.  There were four lead changes in each half.  There was almost no breathing room for either team.

The Gulls won this game despite not scoring a single point over the final 3:49 of it.  Remarkable GC defense limited Endicott to four (missed) shots and caused a turnover.

That was the good news.  The bad news was that the Scots did not capitalize.  They did get a free throw (Garrisson Duvivier) and a last-minute three (Jake Haar) but missed five other field goals and two free throws.  There was also a turnover.  The opportunities were certainly there.

Last possession: Plenty of time (nearly ten seconds) but no timeout.  The Scots ended up with a heavily defended jumper by Garrisson in the last second that actually wedged itself between the rim and the backboard…….I’m not making this up!  And that was the game.

Sam Johnson grabs one of his eighteen rebounds

Sam Johnson grabs one of his eighteen rebounds

The Gulls did an excellent job of limiting Sam Johnson inside.  But they couldn’t keep the non-stop senior from gathering eighteen rebounds.  Twelve of them were on the offensive end.  In the last minute, Sam collected a missed free throw (his own) and set up Jake Haar in front of the GC bench for his seventh triple.

Jake Haar led all scorers with twenty-three points.  He matched his season high in shot attempts with ten.  Finding him more shots would make complete sense.

The Scots will be at the Bennett Center on Saturday afternoon (3PM) to take on Salve Regina.

Odd to be at Endicott for a game with most of the students away.  That place can get noisy and nasty (?).

Efficiency

Max Motroni 22 (19 points)

Jake Haar 22 (23 points)

Sam Johnson 19 (18 points, 5 assists)

Chris Lipscomb 18 (7 rebounds, 5 assists)

Kamahl Walker (22 points, 5 assists)

Gordon 108 (27 assists)

Endicott 98

Box from the game

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

Eric Demers shoots from the corner

Eric Demers shoots from the corner

Kamahl Walker on defense

Kamahl Walker on defense

Garrisson Duvivier (18 points) shoots over Christien Morneweck

Garrisson Duvivier (18 points) shoots over Christien Morneweck

Max Motroni (19 points) makes a tough shot

Max Motroni (19 points) makes a tough shot

Loose ball

Loose ball

Chasing a rebound

Chasing a rebound

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott, Gordon men's basketball 2016-17

Endicott ends Gordon’s season 86-76 in the CCC first round

Richie Armand guards Kemahl Walker (22 points) on the baseline

Richie Armand guards Kemahl Walker (22 points) on the baseline

Plenty of support in the stands for the Gulls

Plenty of support in the stands for the Gulls

(Beverly MA) On a night when the #2 seed (Wentworth) and the #3 seed (Eastern Nazarene) were upset, Endicott (#4 seed) kept it from happening to them as the dispatched Gordon, 86-76, on Tuesday night at Endicott.

The Gulls win earns them a Commonwealth Coast Conference semifinal match on Thursday night in Dudley (MA) versus #1 seed Nichols.

Endicott (16-10) had a win over the Bison in December and a loss at home to NC in late January. Endicott is the defending CCC champion.

Limited room to operate in for GC's Garrisson Duvivier

Limited room to operate inside for GC’s Garrisson Duvivier

The #5 seed Gordon team struggled big-time against the top four seeds (Nichols, Wentworth, Eastern Nazarene, and Endicott) during the regular season ending up with just one win against seven losses.

It was erratic offense that doomed the Scots tonight against Endicott.

For sure the Endicott stars were out in full force. Sometimes you wonder about players getting chosen for All-CCC teams. You ask the, “How did they get there?” question. With EC tonight, their three members on the ALL-CCC teams (Max Motroni, Kemahl Walker, and Daquan Sampson) all showed up in force.

Max Motroni (21 points) covered by Jaren Yang

Max Motroni (21 points) covered by Jaren Yang

Let’s get the Efficiency Chart out here to prove my point:

Kemahl Walker 23 (22 pts/5 reb/4 assts/3 steals)

Max Motroni 21 (21 pts/5 assts/0 turnovers)

Drew Sawyer 17 (10 pts/5 reb)

Sam Johnson 16 (10 pts/15 reb)

Daquan Sampson 15 (15 pts/8 reb)

Endicott 103

Gordon 78

There’s no way Gordon wins this game with just one player in the top five!

Kemahl Walker gets in the air looking to pass around Jake Hart and Sam Johnson

Kemahl Walker gets in the air looking to pass around Jake Hart and Sam Johnson

The scoring lapses were the real killers. The biggest two were in the first half. Minus the two of them the Scots would have been around at the end of the game with a good chance.

Let’s review the two droughts.

First one – Gordon got off to a surprisingly good start. EC missed and missed and missed and Gordon was up 9-3 at 15:28. Three + minutes later the Scots are still at “9” while EC had put twelve unanswered together to lead 15-9. Gordon missed three 3’s and added three turnovers during EC’s 12-point run.

Give GC credit, they got enough consistent offense together to close to within one (29-28) with 2:29 until halftime.

The rest of the way? Second scoring drought. Zero points for Gordon. The Scots missed all four shots they took. Meanwhile, Daquan Sampson riled up the crowd, estimated at 1200, with a dunk, 2 free throws, and a 3-pointer.

Daquan Sampson (15 points) finishes

Daquan Sampson (15 points) finishes

The math would suggest that there were six first-half minutes in which the #5 seed from Wenham did not score a single point. Those were the minutes that cost Gordon the game.

The Scots trailed by ten (38-28) at the half.

Not insurmountable. Plenty of time left. A big second half by Sam Johnson (10 rebounds/8 points) and four 3-pointers got GC within six (74-68) with 3:47 remaining. A couple of stops and some steady offense would make things very interesting. Didn’t happen. The next six points belonged to the home team (tip in’s by Taylor Rioux and Stephen Basden plus two Max Motroni free throws). Is anyone blocking out?? That run of six points put the lead back to twelve and this one was history.

The reality that the season was over settled in on the 12-point lead. Then it was a matter of getting GC’s two seniors (Richie Armand and Udoka Obiora) off to one last ovation. That got done.

Udoka had a wonderful final game making all five shot attempts. He also had a block. No question in my head that Udoka was the most improved player on the team. He and Graham Tienhaara played well enough to enable GC coach Tod Murphy to rest the inside starters Sam Johnson and Garrisson Duvivier.

Udoka Obiora block Kemahl's shot

Udoka Obiora blocks Kemahl’s shot

Richie always looked to pass first. Nice to see him take the ball to the basket and then later take a steal in for a layup. Nice comeback for him this season after getting what looked like a career-ending injury last season.

There will be plenty of experienced players returning for the 2016-17 season. Gordon (12-14) should be highly regarded on paper with all those returnees.

Things I liked about this year’s team in no particular order: (1) rebounding – With the graduation of Hans and Jason I was fearing that teams would own the boards against Gordon. Not so. The combo of Sam & Garrisson turned out to be the best rebounding two-some in the CCC. (2) handling pressure – The Scots still had plenty of turnovers but most of them were in the half-court. Good passing kills pressure, not dribbling unless the defense is man-to-man. Most teams avoided pressing because Gordon could handle it. (3) pre-game dunking – I liked watching it. Many of the young reserves were good at it and it gave them a good chance to show off their athleticism.

Richie Armand

Richie Armand

Udoka Obiora

Udoka Obiora

Things I would like to see improve: (1) front-court passing/dribbling – Way too many turnovers. The ball needs to get inside but the passer and the receiver have to EACH do their part to make it happen. (2) the 3-point shooters have to perfect a second shot and also figure out how to get open – Eric Demers (7-for-last 29), Noah Szilagyi (4-for-last 24), Jake Haar (4-for-last-16). That 3-point shooting will improve if there is the threat of another shot. Trust me! (3) inside accuracy – Too many missed layups. Maybe it is fear of getting a shot blocked? Make the layup or get fouled.

The Scots finished the season losing four of their last five games. But even in the losses Gordon has been competitive. They have been supportive of each other on the court and on the bench. It has been a treat for me to photograph the action and attempt to describe it as well.

God bless Richie and Udoka. The rest of you? Get in the weight room and hone up your skills on the court. And please, don’t neglect the academics!

Boxscore from the game

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

Stephen Basden

Stephen Basden

Drew Sawyer and Jake Hart

Drew Sawyer and Jake Hart

Jake Haar guards Max Motroni

Jake Haar guards Max Motroni

Kemahl Walker (First Team ALL-CCC)

Kemahl Walker (First Team ALL-CCC)

Sam Johnson and Garrisson Duvivier eye a rebound

Sam Johnson and Garrisson Duvivier eye a rebound

Loose ball

Loose ball

Taylor Rioux cashes in a rebound

Taylor Rioux cashes in a rebound

Leave a comment

Filed under Endicott