Category Archives: MIT

MIT defeats cold-shooting Scots 74-59

(Amesbury/Cambridge) The outside game that carried Gordon to wins in their first two games deserted them in a 74-59 loss to MIT on Thursday night in Cambridge.

Gordon has now lost to non-league MIT nine straight times.

The Scots (2-1) employed a seldom-seen zone defense to offset the MIT size and for the longest time the Engineers (2-0) shot poorly enough to make it look like a good idea.

And it was a good idea until the point at which Gordon was within four (52-48) with 7:33 left. At that juncture the home team put a 12-2 run together over 2+ minutes and pulled away to 64-50 silencing any GC upset plans the cold-shooting Scots might have had.

During the crucial segment the Scots were 1-for-6 with three missed free throws. Meanwhile, MIT hit six straight free throws, a jump shot (Ryan Frankel) and a three (Adam Jurko).

Credit MIT for developing patience against the GC zone as the game went on. They were able to pass their way to open three’s into the second half but on this night couldn’t cash many of those good looks. Later, after making extra passes to get interior high-percentage shots, the 3-point shot turned up at the end of the shot clock and MIT started connecting on those 3’s.

Sam Johnson turned in his second double/double of the young season with sixteen points and eleven rebounds. Garrisson Duvivier added thirteen points for the Scots. Gordon tallied thirty-four points in the paint.

The rest of the offense was missing for much of the night. Could it have something to do with three games in six days?

Efficiency Chart

Tim Butala 22 (22 points/9 rebounds)

Ryan Frankel 21 (19 points/8 assists)

Garrisson Duvivier 16 (13 points)

Sam Johnson 15 (16 points/11 rebounds)

Adam Jurko 14 (12 points)

MIT 90

Gordon 59

Box Score

The Scots had only ten turnovers which matched last year’s season low also against MIT.

Gordon’s next game is in Salem next Tuesday against Salem State. MIT entertains Eastern Nazarene.

I watched this game on the good MIT feed. I’ll try to do the same thing on the Salem State game because Julie and I will be visiting family in Connecticut.





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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



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 drops third straight 67-48 to MIT

Hans Miersma (shown here against ENC) had 18 points and 13 rebounds againt MIT.

Hans Miersma (shown here against ENC) had 18 points and 13 rebounds against MIT.

(Amesbury MA) That’s three……..and counting.

Gordon (0-3) fell to nonleague MIT (2-0), 67-48, on Tuesday night in Cambridge.

The Scots have dropped three games in the first five days of the season, all away from the Bennett Center.

Friday night is the home opener (7PM) versus Worcester State.

The Scots lost to MIT for the fifth straight time.  You have to go back to the Aaron Trigg days to see a win over the Engineers.  (Aaron had thirty points and five assists in Gordon’s, 77-69, victory on 11/19/08 at Cambridge.)

But that was then.  The 2013-14 Scots are struggling so far to put forth a consistent statistical performance.  A road game against a tall, talented team like MIT was not likely to be where the Scots would be putting their inconsistencies to rest.

The Engineers tallied the last four points (in the last minute) of the first half to lead, 31-22, at halftime.

The Scots were still down nine (35-26) 1+ minutes into the second half.  But over the next 2 1/2 minutes MIT went on an 11-1 run, to lengthen their advantage to nineteen (46-27), and Gordon never recovered.  The teams played even the rest of the way but the Scots needed a lot more than that.

Those forty-eight points that GC ended up with were their lowest point total since two years ago when MIT took down the Scots, 70-38.

Hans Miersma topped the Efficiency List with a 23.  The 6-9 junior had eighteen points to go along with thirteen rebounds.

The next four on the Efficiency List were Engineers:
Paul Dawson 22 (17 points/8 assists),
Andrew Acker 18 (11 rebounds),
Matt Redfield (14 points), and
Dennis Levene 13.

The team efficiency stats were revealing:
MIT 80,
Gordon 40.

The tell-tale stat in this loss, to me, was the seventeen Gordon turnovers that led to twenty-one MIT points.  The TO numbers have been 21-17-17 so far.  This team cannot afford that many empty possessions.

But it is early.  Last year’s 21-7 Gordon team started out 2-4.

Interesting opponent on Friday night….Worcester State Lancers.  Coach Murphy mentioned Dane Jobst of WSU in his Coach’s Corner article.  I did some research on the 6-5 senior.  Dane has had seven straight double/doubles, counting the two this season.  Last season he had a 22 points/20 rebounds game against Clark.  Dane also dropped 40 points against Nichols last season.  Last game (against Becker) Dane had 14 rebounds and 27 points and earned a 36 Efficiency rating.

All that being said, WSU is 0-2.  So there will be two teams at the Bennett Center looking for Win #1.  Hungry?  I guess!

The Gordon student section had some impressive games during the 2012-13 season.  Maybe they’ll make the difference against the visiting Lancers on Friday night.

MIT/Gordon boxscore

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Gordon scares MIT but loses basketball opener 64-53

Park Thomas hits a late three to tie the score with MIT at halftime.

Mitchell Kates (23 points and 4 assists)

(Wenham) Who expected this?

Here was D3 Hoops preseason #1 team visiting the Bennett Center.  They were 29-2 last year and reached the D3 final four.

But there was Gordon giving those same highly regarded MIT Engineers a run for their money.

Unfortunately, this game did not reach the major upset level because Gordon couldn’t stay with the visiting Engineers over the last 4 ½ minutes and lost, 64-53.

MIT (2-0) was led by seniors Mitchell Kates (23 points & 4 assists) and Will Tashman (20 points & 10 rebounds).

Bennett Center crowd for the home opener

The GC crowd was substantial for the team opener on Saturday night.  And there was plenty to cheer about.

Chants of “over rated, over rated,” rang out at the Engineers from the Gordon student section after a late Park Thomas three tied the score (30-30) at the half.

The Scots were even ahead, 39-38, after eight minutes of the second half.

But then the Engineers started to separate from the Scots (50-42) after a Mitchell Kates (23 points) long one with six minutes left.  However, on this night GC refused to pack it in and when Jason Dempsey scored in the paint with 4:25 to go the Scots were within four, 52-48.

However, four possession later this game had gotten away from Gordon.  Three straight turnovers (Park Thomas, Hans Miersma, and Park again) plus a missed three by Luke Hamilton was all that GC had to show for the next three minutes.

Because of the Gordon dry spell, MIT went into the final 1:18 with a seven-point spread (57-50) and made enough free throws the rest of the way to build the closing score to, 64-53.

A disappointing loss for sure for Gordon (0-1) but not unexpected against a team of MIT’s pedigree.  Missing from MIT’s lineup was 6-9 Noel Hollingsworth.  Noel made the 4th team D3 Hoops All-American team but will be out several months with a foot injury.

However, Mitchell Kates (3rd team D3 Hoops All-American) did play.  He didn’t shoot as well as he can but his overall game – passing and defending – is very solid.  He had the ball under control on every MIT possession down the stretch and it made a difference.  The Engineers ended up with floor shots and free throws while GC had a string of turnovers.

David Dempsey (25) shoots in traffic.

“Who was that masked man?”  Only someone old enough to have watched The Lone Ranger would raise such a question!  But at the Bennett Center it was David Dempsey.  The Gordon senior was injured (nose) in a scrimmage and initially it was thought that he would miss weeks.  Then with the surgery done (on his nose) two days ago it was thought that he would miss games.  Surprise, surprise……there he was leading the team out in the opener.

David played thirty-nine minutes and didn’t hesitate to take the ball into traffic (as he usually does) to see what turns up.  He ended up getting whacked a few times and even with the mask on was occasionally in some serious pain.

David finished with fifteen points and the less said about his 2-for-9 free throw shooting the better.

Junior Park Thomas (13 points) carried Gordon in the first half  with thirteen points including three-for-five from long range.  Mitchell Kates gave Park very little room to shoot in the second half.

A trademark of last year’s 9-17 team was frustrating losses.  The Scots were ahead in the second half in eleven of those losses.  The loss to MIT qualifies for the category, in the sense that GC was ahead in the second half, but it was hardly a frustrating loss against such a highly-regarded opponent.

Gordon had only twenty-four total rebounds.

Missing from the Gordon team were Alex Carnes and Cooper Meyer.

Taylor Bajema is now a Gordon starter.

Andrew Shulman (34) takes in a rebound.

Newcomers Chris Alderson and Andrew Shulman saw minutes.  Chris played sound defense and can dribble well.  Andrew (6-6) blocked an Engineer shot much to the delight of the GC faithful.

Interested spectators from Endicott were in the house.

Former Gordon players Jeff Derr, Greg Walker, and Brady Bajema were on hand for the opener.

Next game for MIT is Emmanuel College at home on November 20th (8PM).

Gordon returns to the Bennett Center on the same day to face Salem State at 7:30PM.

Also on the same day I will be heading to Connecticut for over a week.  That takes me elsewhere for the Scots next two games.  I expect to blog about them from long range.

Top Five Players in Efficiency in this game

Will Tashman +27
Mitchell Kates +17
Andrew Acker +14
Jamie Burke +10
Park Thomas +10
Hans Miersma +10

When NBA coaches evaluate a player’s game performance they use the following stats:

#1 –  good stats (rebounds, points, assists, blocks, steals). #2 –  bad stats (missed field goals, missed free throws, turnovers).

A player’s efficiency in a particular game is arrived at by subtracting the sum of the bad stats from the sum of good stats.

box score

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

Jason Dempsey (14) blocks Will Tashman

tight defense

Brady Bajema, Greg Walker, Jeff Derr

Shaun Roach (11) and Luke Hamilton (10)

MIT coach Larry Anderson

Will Tashman (20 points and 10 rebounds)

Chris Alderson (1)

loose ball

another Gordon season under way

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MIT Cruises Past Winless Gordon College in Men’s Basketball

Shaun Roach (11) lets a three fly as Billy Bender (31) runs to defend.

Hans Miersma defends Noel Hollingsworth.

(Cambridge) I think it’s safe to say that if Gordon (0-2) continues to score just 38 points per game there won’t be many W’s in the games ahead.

Thursday night they took a 70-38 beating at MIT in non-league action at the Rockwell Cage in Cambridge.

The Engineers (2-0) may well be the best team the Scots will face this season.  Ranked 10th by D3 Hoops, they have plenty of weapons and take playing defense seriously.

This was obviously not a good matchup on either end of the court for the work-in-progress Scots.

Once MIT got started (it took them 3 ½ minutes to score), they were able to find good looks regularly.  The Engineers were very effective at getting the ball inside and then creating offense from there.  Of course, with D3 Hoops pre-season All-American 6-9 Neil Hollingsworth (15 points) inside it made perfect sense to go inside as often as possible.

Defensively, MIT limited Gordon’s shot attempts (43) and created twenty-three turnovers.

I thought that the Scots ran their offense better than against Babson and created some open shots but just weren’t hitting.  Gordon missed all ten 3-point attempts. Even when they weren’t guarded (at the foul line) they struggled making just 12-of-21.  That shooting is bound to improve!

Where did this one get away?

Tied at 2-2 at 15:43 of the first half, the Scots missed their next eight shots and had five turnovers during the next 7 ½ minutes and by then they trailed, 15-2.

Over the last 8 ¼ minutes Gordon was 2-for-8 with two more turnovers and trailed at halftime, 34-14.

4 ½ minutes into the second half the Engineers led, 48-18.  You get the idea, this was a downhill slide.  Plenty of substitutes from both squads covered the remainder of the game.

David Dempsey (10 points) defended by Dennis Levene.

David Dempsey paced Gordon’s scorers with ten points while Noel Hollingsworth led MIT with fifteen points in limited minutes.

Noel also had plenty to do with Hans Miersma’s limited minutes.  Hans started and covered Noel for only nine minutes during the game before exiting with his fifth foul.  Hans also learned (hopefully) that college officials aren’t interested in on-court evaluations by participants.

Gordon takes on yet another highly regarded opponent in their next game – Salem State.  The game is at Salem next Tuesday night at 7PM.  I’ll be in Connecticut preparing for Thanksgiving when that one is played.

MIT’s next game is Saturday at home (2PM) against Rensselaer.

The Rockwell Cage had been significantly upgraded since I was there two years ago.  The individual seats were the best part.

For a team’s home opener, the crowd was pretty sparse.  Maybe the students were studying?

Gordon last defeated MIT on November 19, 2008 in a game at Gordon. Aaron Trigg dropped thirty on the Engineers in the, 77-69, overtime victory.

MIT has an amazing aquatic center including platforms for high diving.  They also have Steinbrenner Stadium.

(The pictures will enlarge to normal size if you click on them.)

Will Tashman (21)

Stephen Herod (22)

Paul Dawson (12) & Craig McFarlane (24)

Noel Hollingsworth

Coach Tod Murphy & Hans Miersma

Billy Bender (31) layup

Andrew Acker (45) & Luke Perkins (23)

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Championship Banner and Improved Effort Displayed

Team members prepare to pull the ropes that will unfurl the CCC basketball championship banner.

Mitchell Kate's defense (7 steals) and offense (game high 23 points) paced MIT.

(Wenham)  On a Saturday afternoon when the 2009-10 Commonwealth Coast Conference banner went on display in the Bennett Center rafters, the current Scots raised the spirits of the Gordon faithful with a good effort against powerhouse MIT.

The Scots (2-5) lost 92-73 but upgraded their play (48.2% shooting and 18 turnovers) considerably.  Two days ago against Bates, the Scots had just 37 points and 32 turnovers. 

A school official from Kansas told me afterwards, “This kind of effort will win them (Gordon) games the rest of the season.” 

However, against a team like MIT (6-1), ranked 20th in the country by D3 Hoops, even an excellent effort wasn’t enough.  The Engineers could make shots and they had Mitchell Kate.

First the MIT shooting.  It was 53.2% overall but the 3-point accuracy (14-for-25) was the eye catcher.  Shooting that way away from home is very impressive.  Rolling up 56 points in the first half wasn’t too shabby either as was their 12-for-12 from the foul line.

Mitchell Kate is a special player.  The 6-1 sophomore is hard not to watch because his leadership on the offensive end is so obvious.  I saw him last year make shots and set up teammates.  A year later, he’s still doing it.  Look at this stat line – 10-for-15 shooting (23 points) and 8 assists.  He made a desperation runner at the halftime buzzer that had me thinking Ray Allen.  But does Mitchell play defense?  How do 7 steals sound to you?

Gordon surprised a lot of us with a hot-shooting start hitting eight of their first twelve shots and carrying a 20-18 advantage after 8 ½ minutes (20-18). 

The next six possessions didn’t go as well – three missed shots and three turnovers.  Meanwhile the Engineers put together fourteen points on their six possessions, taking the lead for good (30-20) in the process. 

Austin Bentson - matched his career high with 16 points

Later in the half, the Scots rode a couple of crowd-pleasing, Austin Bentson 3’s to close to 35-30 but MIT answered with seven straight and had the lead up to 56-40 at the half.

In my opinion, the biggest positive from this game was that the team played MIT practically even in the second half.  That’s the effort that the school official from Kansas was referring to, I suspect. 

MIT ended up with 92 points and had four players (Mitchell-23, Jamie Karraker-21, Will Tashman-15, and Billy Bender-11) in double figures.  Will also added ten rebounds.

Greg Walker (21 points) paced the Scots despite heavy coverage all game.  Austin Bentson matched his career high with 16 points.  David Dempsey had 11 points with 5 assists and 3 steals.  David was also 3-for-3 from the foul line after suffering with 13-for-30 during the first six games.

The unfurling of the championship banner prior to the game was special.  Just over nine months ago (February 27th) the Scots defeated Curry, 56-54, at the Bennett Center to secure their first CCC basketball title.  All five seniors (Brady/Aaron/Timmy/Ben/Jeff) from that team were on hand as well as the adult , Triggs, Derrs, and Bajemas

The Scots return to action at 7PM on Thursday night against never-played-before Wesleyan.  The Bennett Center crowds have been a bit sparse lately especially in The Pit.  Has studying become more important than team support? 

JT and Mitchell part with a handshake.

I liked the effort of the team in general and specifically the effort of JT Himmelstein.  JT’s special effort was after the game when he sought out Mitchell Kate.  During the second half, Mitchell victimized JT and headed off for a layup.  JT caught him and wrapped him up so that he couldn’t shoot.  They both went down pretty hard and the referee gave JT a flagrant foul.  In some settings there could have been some real trouble thereafter but there wasn’t at the Bennett Center on this afternoon.  After the game, JT talked with Mitchell and they seemed to part peacefully.  Nicely done!

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Bates Forces 32 Turnovers in Rout of Scots

Little for The Pit to cheer about in a 85-37 loss to Bates.

(Wenham) When members of The Pit start filing out long before a game is over you know things aren’t going well for the home team at the Bennett Center.

That surely was the case, Thursday night, as Gordon (2-4) got in with a talented Bates team (5-1).  The Scots hung in for a half (34-20), thanks to some gritty defense, but fell completely apart in the second half and lost, 85-37.

Shaun Roach tries his hand at point guard while Reid Christian (#4) defends.

Gordon’s offense was the really big problem on this evening.  Every possession seemed to be a turnover-in-waiting.  I counted 72 possessions.  The stat sheet shows an incredible 32 turnovers – 15 in the first half and 17 in the second half.  I suspect that no team at any level has ever won with that many turnovers.  Mix in a meager SIX assists for the game and you have a team with a malfunctioning offense.

However, it must be remembered that this team, beyond Greg, David, and Austin, is very inexperienced.  Things will get better but slowly.  The transition will be hard to watch at times (like this game) and quite possibly next game (MIT – #20 in D3 Hoops poll) on Saturday afternoon.

The big news about the next game is that before the MIT game there will be a ceremony to unveil the 2009-10 Commonwealth Coast Conference championship banner.  The ceremony is scheduled for 2:45PM and the five graduates from that team (Aaron, Brady, Ben, Timmy, and Jeff) are expected to attend.  It is an event that will bring back sweet memories for the Gordon faithful.

Now I’m supposed to switch back to a game that won’t be a pleasant memory! 

A 14-2 run over five minutes put the Bobcats ahead, 17-6, after 7 ½ minutes.  With a streak of six straight points Greg Walker (12 points) closed the gap single-handedly to 20-14.  However, Bates scored the last six points of the half and led 34-20.

Brian Ellis - 6-5 senior paced Bates with 16 points

Brian Ellis (16 points/2 steals) paced Bates.  Brian had 24 points last year in Gordon’s win in Lewiston.  Brian’s sixteen points this time came in just seventeen minutes of playing time.  The 6-5 senior is one of the better players in New England.

Bates really put up the points (51) in the second half.  Along the way they had a ten-point run, an 11-1 run, and an 18-1 run.  The Scots had no answers on offense or defense.

David Dempsey topped the Gordon scorers with 16 points.  I am sure that during preseason the talented sophomore was told that he would have to take on more responsibility on offense this season.  I doubt that he expected to end up being the point guard as much as he has, however.  Desperate times call for desperate measures!

Gordon used an aggressive zone defense at times and I thought it was effective in the early going. 

Luke Hamilton returned to action after missing the Babson game Tuesday night. 

Roy Ray made his debut for Gordon.  Luke Perkins registered his first two points.

Assistant coach Keith Krass gives halftime instruction to Caleb Perkins.


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Filed under 2010-11 Gordon College men's basketball, Babson, Bates, MIT