Category Archives: Western New England

Garrett Sattazahn key in Gordon’s 78-72 win over Western New England

Garrett Sattazahn (28 points) had a terrific all-around game for Gordon

Garrett Sattazahn seals the W at the line

Garrett Sattazahn gets open in close

(Wenham MA) Can one player take over a game?

Not usually, but sophomore Garrett Sattazahn (28 points) came close tonight in Gordon’s 78-72 win over Western New England.

The Bears (0-3) had the lead (69-66) with 3:40 left after an Alex Sikorski (19 points) three.

Enter Garrett.

The Scots (3-0) next eleven points came from the young man from Morris (CT).  There was a three, two layups, and four straight free throws.

The Bears couldn’t keep pace down the stretch.  They shot one-for-seven and had two turnovers and allowed Garrett and his teammates to secure the win.

Alex Sikorski (19 points) puts up a late-game three for Western New England

“We were there, and we had our chances,” said WNE coach Colin Tabb afterwards.  “We don’t shoot as well as we did last year so their zone was tough for us to play against.”

The Gordon defense in the second half was the key to their successful turnaround.

“It wasn’t looking good for the first fifteen minutes,” recalled Gordon coach Tod Murphy post-game.

“We didn’t play any defense in the first half but did in the second half,” said Coach Murphy.

Zach Bennett (six points) goes for a steal against Kenny Flynn

The numbers from the two halves spoke volumes as Western New England had forty-eight points in the first half but only twenty-four points in the second half.”

The jump-out stat from this game, other than Garrett’s 28 points, was Gordon’s twelve steals.

“The difference between last year and this year is that we’re putting a lot more effort into defense,” explained Garrett, “and it’s showing. Last year they came in here and scored nearly 120 points.”

GC went into seldom-seen, full-court pressure late in the first half and lowered a 45-33 WNE lead to 48-43 by halftime.

Caleb Scott (8 points) shoots over Zach Tavitian

Freshman Caleb Scott (8 points) scored twice from in close in the last minute, assisted by Garrett (seven assists) both times.

Garrett seemed to flourish in transition, either setting up teammates or finishing himself.

“He (Garrett) is a very good player,” said Coach Tabb, “It looks like he’s stepping nicely into the (Eric) Demers’ role.”

“Eric has been a great mentor to me,” explained Garrett.  “He’s taught me how to get open among other things.”

“I was feeling it a little bit tonight,” added Garrett.  “I definitely, however, give credit to my teammates.  They were looking for me and giving me good screens.”

“Garrett does everything,” said Coach Murphy.  Hard to argue with that after Garrett had a night with seven rebounds, seven assists, six steals, and twenty-eight points!

“I have to pull him out from time to time because he’ll run himself into the ground if I don’t,” added Coach Murphy.

Michael Makiej drives

Coach Tabb wasn’t pleased with his team’s defense.  “Our decisions on the defensive end weren’t good.  We didn’t defend well in transition or off the ball.”

“Defense wins ballgames,” said Coach Murphy.  “If we give the defensive energy we did in the second half, we’ll be okay.  We have to be aggressive because we’re a small team.”

Parker Omslaer, despite getting into foul trouble, was able to get thirteen points on the inside.

Kenny Flynn (16 points) and Gavin Greene (12 points) were the other Bears in double figures.

Off night, for sure for WNE senior Zach Tavitian (5 points).  Zach recently reached the 1000-point mark for the Bears.

Alex Villalobos and Josh Crutchfield

Got my first look at Gordon freshman Alex Villalobos.

The Scots will play on the road tomorrow (Saturday) in Springfield at Western New England.

Still impressed with the brightness of the Kanas Court.

I have been in quite a few gymnasiums lately (ask my wife), and the Kanas Court is as good as any of them.  Can’t wait to be in there when the crowds are back.

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

The link to this coverage will be on Twitter (@mcclellandpeter) and pictures should appear on Instagram (@mcclellandmiscellanea) on Saturday.

Zach Tavitian

Zach Quanico and Justin Yu

Alex Sikorski (19 points) dunks

Kenny Flynn (16 points) dunks

Josh Crutchfield launches from long range

Parker Omslaer (13 points, 7 rebounds)

Josh Crutchfield loses a shoe

Zach Quanico (4 points)

Western New England coach Colin Tabb

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Western New England shoots by Gordon 112-98

Zach Tavitian (21 points) in close against Parker Omslaer

Alex Sikorski (24 points, 8 rebounds)

(Wenham MA) Gordon got on the wrong end of a shootout and lost to Western New England, 112-98, on Tuesday night in a Commonwealth Coast Conference game.

The Golden Bears had a 71-point second half and the Scots (6-5) could only hang around for so long under such a barrage.

“Defensively, we’re not good,” said GC coach Tod Murphy afterwards.

Gordon (1-2 in the CCC) plays zone defense almost exclusively but for the final eight minutes tonight they went man-to-man.

Josh Crutchfield (14 points) looks to get the ball inside

“We don’t see a zone defense all year, certainly for this length of time,” said WN coach Colin Tabb post-game.  “I thought that we did a good job of getting the ball to the middle against their zone.”

Western New England (8-5) had six players in double figures led by Alex Sikorski (24), Tim Reilly (24), and Zach Tavitian (21).

“Alex Sikorski and Mike McGuire (15 points) are two of the top shooters in the conference,” said Coach Murphy.  “(Tim) Reilly is another good player.  I don’t think he missed a shot all night.”

The Bears (3-1 in CCC) took the lead for good in the first half.

Despite WNE’s 71-point second half the Scots were within four points three different times; 50-46, 78-74, and 86-82 in that second half.  Knowing the way Gordon can put up points, there was always a chance that they could catch the Bears.  But on this night, the Bears had so many contributors that they had answers when GC got close.

“We’ve got the talent to beat teams but until we put a priority on the defensive end of the floor, it’s going to be a struggle,” admitted Coach Murphy.

Eric Demers (32 points) with three Bears on alert

The least kept secret in the CCC could be Eric Demer’s ability to put up points.  Teams come in with a plan and WNE was no different.  “We knew how good he is,” said Colin Tabb.  “We tried to limit his touches and find him early.  Multiple players took turns guarding him.”

Eric still found 32 points.  On this night many of his points were free throws.  At least there he wasn’t guarded tightly by one player with several other defenders nearby ready to help.

Junior Josh Crutchfield (14 points) had a career high in points.  He has the quickness to get to the basket and did it several times.

Sophomores Ben North and David Massillon, as well as junior Avelino Damoura, were unavailable for Gordon.  “Right now, we’re so depleted with injuries,” explained Coach Murphy.  “We have three of our top eight or nine players sitting on the bench.”

Zach Bennett in for two

Coach Murphy was optimistic about the future: “Don’t get me wrong.  I haven’t lost hope on the season. We can still beat a lot of teams.  We need to get hot at the right time.  We also need to discover the ability and desire to get stops.”

The stat that seemed to please Coach Tabb the most was assists: “We’re 3rd in the country in assists.  We had twenty-two more tonight.  It’s nice to see the guys looking for each other.  Hunting shots for each other.  Passing up good for great.  Sometimes I get frustrated when we pass up good shots but often they find better shots.”

Coach Murphy: “Western New England is a very good team.  What we saw tonight is the way they have been playing most of the season.”

Coach Tabb thought that the 112 points his team scored might be a program high.  If that isn’t a program high, I’m guessing that the 71-point second half would be.

Parker Omslaer (19 points)

Parker Omslaer (19 points) had a strong second half.  When the 6-11 junior gets the ball in close, other teams have to send help, which should create openings for GC perimeter shooters.

The students still aren’t back so it was mostly teammates and relatives in the house.

Junior Zach Tavitian had eleven rebounds to go with his twenty-one points.  He also had three blocks.

Senior Mike McGuire finished with nine assists and three steals to go with his fifteen points.

Freshman Garrett Sattazahn added six assists to his ten points.

Ahead for the Scots is Endicott in Beverly on Thursday night.  The Gulls were nipped (71-70) by Nichols tonight.

Western New England’s only league loss was to Endicott.  “We didn’t shoot well,” explained Coach Tabb.

Box from the game

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

Nick DeGennaro (15 points)

Loose ball

Justin Yu defends Nick DeGennaro

Garrett Sattazahn (10 points, 6 assists)

Eric Demers to the rim with the left hand

Eric Demers from straight away

Eric Demers at the foul line

Eric Demers tries a three from the right

Cole Eiber spent time defending Eric Demers

Tim Reilly (24 points)






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Winning streak ends as Gordon falls to Western New England

Mikey Pettway – led Western New England with 24 points including 14 in the second half.

(Amesbury MA) Wake up, call!

Silky Sullivan was a famous race horse.  His specialty?  Starting slowly and then coming on fast to win at the end.  A special camera was often used to show how far back the horse was….before he would rush up late to win.

The Gordon College Fighting Scots were no “Silky Sullivan” this afternoon in Springfield against Western New England.  They did get the bad start part right but not the rest of it.

The result was a 94-88 frustration against the Bears.

The Scots (16-2) started badly on both ends of the court (trailed 50-33 at the half), but we had seen this before.

In the second half, Gordon shifted into comeback mode and turned a 57-36 deficit into a very tight, 66-63, close one in 8 ½ minutes.  Shots started falling on one end and not-so-much down the other end.

With 10 ½ minutes to go, you “knew” where this was going…….or so you thought.  WN came in 5-12.  WN had collapsed in the second half at the Bennett Center in December and lost 99-70.

Credit the Bears, they “forgot” what was supposed to happen and in the next two minutes had a triple (Tim Reilly), another triple (Mike McGuire), and a jump shot (Mikey Pettway).  The Scots went scoreless.  The lead expanded back to eleven (74-63) and the Scots lost playing catchup the rest of the way.

Garrisson Duvivier had a 26-point second half with seven rebounds and two steals.

Wasted in the second half was a performance by Garrisson Duvivier that may have been the best half anyone in a Gordon jersey every played.  Check these 2nd half numbers: 26 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals!

As great as GD’s performance was, it wasn’t enough.

Why?  Blame WN senior Mikey Pettway.  The Commonwealth Coast Conference All-Star has a 20-point average.  First time against the Scots MP had a surprising six points on 3-for-10 shooting.  He’s a lot better than that and this afternoon he was, especially in the second half.  Mikey ended with twenty-four points, getting fourteen of them in the second half (along with four assists).  Mikey’s play was crucial because the Scots had awakened to the possibility of a game being lost and were playing with urgency.

The Bears (6-12) shot 50% and were adept at making the mid-range jumpers that the Gordon zone seems vulnerable to.  They dared to go to the basket against the GC shot blockers and often got away with it.

Gordon struggled mightily from long range connecting a season-low five times on twenty-four attempts.  The team averages eight made three’s a game.  Get the average and today’s result was a W.

After sixty-four days the Scots (16-2) have their second loss.

Not a good start to the second time through the other eight teams in the CCC.  Other coaches in the games ahead will be studying the video of today’s game for ways to defeat GC when it is their team’s turn versus the Scots.

Good luck to them on that one.  The Bears played better against Gordon than anyone else has to date.  The efficiency number (subtract bad stats from good stats) confirmed the excellence of Western New England this afternoon.  Good shooting (50%), rebounding (42), assists (18), and low turnovers (10) show what it takes.  And don’t forget Mikey Pettway getting twenty-four points.  Teams will have to play well to defeat Gordon.

UNE will be at the Bennett Center on Tuesday night and their style (press, shoot 3’s, and wholesale changes) is entertaining to watch.  Maybe not so much for Kendall at the scorer’s table trying to keep track of stats!

Parker Omslaer contributed sixteen points and eleven rebounds versus Western New England

Parker Omslaer had one of his best games for Gordon.  The 6-11 sophomore registered his third double/double (16 points/11 rebounds) and had a career-high six blocks.

The returned students should be in the house on Tuesday night.  The Scots could use the energy boost that a good partisan crowd can bring.  The team is well worth the look.

Box from the game



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Gordon rolls in the 2nd half downing Western New England 99-70

Garrisson Duvivier

Eric Demers

(Wenham MA) I should have learned my lesson.

Points are going to be scored in bunches.

Gordon (6-1) rode a 58-point second half to a, 99-70, Commonwealth Coast Conference win over Western New England (2-6) on Tuesday night at the Bennett Center.

Anyone in the building will tell you that the final score was very misleading.  This was a 3-point game (41-38) at halftime.  Gordon had dominated the first part of the half and the Bears the other part.

Noah Szilagyi had a career-high twenty points

“The beginning of the game we were killing it,” explained senior Noah Szilagyi afterwards.  Seven minutes in the score was 17-2 but WN was too good a team to let that last.

Suddenly the visitors began to drain three’s and that lead evaporated.  “We gave up open three’s and against any of the teams we play, they will knock them down,” said GC coach Tod Murphy.

Things changed in the second half.

“We did a good job defensively in the second half,” explained Coach Murphy. “Our wings were getting out high and taking away the reversals.  That second half was the way we want to play every single game.”

Josh Crutchfield and Josh Ribeiro apply defense

Gordon’s rediscovered ability to defend the three and discourage layups put Western New England in a bad way in the second half.

Taking the biggest hit was the Bears best player, Mikey Pettway, who entered the game as the CCC’s top scorer (25 points per game) and left Wenham with a 3-for-10 night and six points.

“The zone defense made it hard on (Mikey) Pettway,” said Coach Murphy.  “He’s the engine of that team.  Our goal before the game was to keep him out of the paint.”

Recall that in the first half the Scots jumped off to a 17-2 start.  Second half they did better!  The halftime 41-38 tight game turned into 58-38 five minutes into the second half.  That’s a 17-0 run.  The Bears missed their first ten shots.

Mikey Pettway tries to shoot over Garrisson Duvivier

“We learned from the first half,” said Coach Murphy.  “Western New England called a timeout when we were up by seventeen.  I didn’t say a word in the timeout.  Our guys said, ‘That’s the same as we did in the first half.  We’ve got to finish it.’”

And that was what they did.  The spread rose into the 30’s and before it was over, thirteen Scots had scored.

Noah: “If we continue to buy in on the defensive end, I think we’ll reap the rewards on offense and it should be a good season for us.”

It’s already been a “good” season; a 6-1 record, including three wins in the conference, and a five-game win streak.

Eric Demers flies in

Plenty of excitement in the house, as both Garrisson Duvivier and Eric Demers were honored for reaching 1000 points last season.

Both continue to add to their career totals.  Eric (1190 points) passed Joe Witherspoon and moved into 13th place on the all-time scorer’s list.  Garrisson (1503) pushed past Jon Marstaller into 6th place.

Plenty of highlight plays before an excited crowd.  Four Gordon jams by my count.

Eric paced GC with twenty-two points while Garrisson and Noah Szilagyi each had twenty points.  Garrisson also added twelve rebounds.

Noah Szilagyi was 8-for-9

The twenty points was a career high for Noah.  The senior reached eighteen points twice in his freshman year.

“Coming into the starting role has been a big blessing,” he explained.  “I appreciated all those times coming off the bench in previous years and having a perspective on that part of the game.  I’m playing with such a talented group of guys.  Nobody can be left on the floor.”

Coach Murphy sees Noah as a key to the defense.  “Noah is very active and has long arms.  He’s perfect for a zone defense.  Deflections are a key to this defense and he’s leading the team in deflections.”

Those of us who were at the Bennett Center for Saturday’s game with Curry noticed a significant difference three days later.  In the Curry game the reserves took over with a 30+ point lead in the second half.  The Colonels went on a scoring rampage and much of the comfortable lead was squandered.  That didn’t happen against Western New England.

Luke Meyer drives

“I gave the reserves a little bit of a hard time after the game on Saturday,” said Coach Murphy.  “I told them that I would hold them to the same standard I held every other player to.”

Coach Murphy: “There aren’t a lot of D3 programs that have the length that we have.  The game is turning into shooting 3’s and shooting layups.  The zone is intended to take away 3’s and when you’ve got two shot blockers inside you take away layups too.  We’re trying to force teams to made mid-range shots and so far it has worked for us.”

Ahead are two non-conference games with Colby (Thursday) and Johnson & Wales (Saturday) both at home.  “The next two games will be monsters,” said Coach Murphy.  “Colby has size and they’re a lot like Endicott.  It will give us a chance to see if the zone will work against teams like that.”

Box from the game

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

AJ Terry shoots in traffic

Eric Demers and his father

Brett Bowman lines up a three

David Massillon dunks

Eric Demers and Mikey Pettway

Eric Demers dunks

Eric Demers gets to the basket

Garrisson Duvivier draws a crowd

Garrisson Duvivier dunk

Garrisson Duvivier and family

Mikey Pettway looks for a shot

Parker Omslaer dunk





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Gordon holds off Western New England 84-77 on Senior Day

Gordon seniors and their families

Eric Demers (41 points) reached a new career high in points

(Wenham MA) Don’t let that final score fool you.

Western New England led by a point (74-73) with 2:38 left in this game. The outcome was anything but certain.

But the Scots (14-7) were offensively efficient down the stretch and posted a, 84-77, win on Saturday afternoon at the Bennett Center.

Special day for the Gordon faithful as the Scots four seniors (Jaren Yang, Steve Vampatella, Jake Hart, and Graham Tienhaara) were honored.

Traditionally, the Gordon seniors start on Senior Day.  That put first-time starters Steven Vampatella and Graham Tienhaara out there to open the game.

The senior foursome plus Eric Demers got off to a terrific start.  “I thought that Gordon came out with terrific energy,” said Western New England coach Colin Tabb afterwards.

Graham Tienhaara spins left for two in the early going.

By the time Graham Tienhaara went to the bench, he had six points and Gordon had a seven-point lead.  “Graham got us off to a great start,” said Gordon coach Tod Murphy.

Behind Eric Demers’ twenty-point first half the Scots were ahead, 48-38, at halftime.

Sixteen days ago, the Golden Bears (8-12) routed the Scots, 101-83, in Springfield so you had to expect that they would make things interesting in the second half.  And they did.

Mikey Pettway had thirty-one points and scored his 1000th point in the previous meeting.  This time around Mikey was off (13 points) but freshman EJ Day (28 points) more than made up for it.

“EJ Day is going to be a load to go against over the next three years,” said Coach Murphy.  EJ, like Mikey, displayed the ability to get shots off from anywhere despite being 5-10.  EJ made three’s and showed his quickness getting to the rim.

Freshman EJ Day (28 points) carried the Bears

Gordon led by sixteen (60-44) with 16:44 left.  But WNE didn’t go away.  Over the next 6+ minutes they overwhelmed the cooled off Scots.

An 18-2 run evened the teams at 62-62.  We had ourselves a ballgame!

What happened during that stretch?  Gordon made one of nine shots, including five three’s, and had three turnovers.  Then there’s Western New England: The Bears made seven of thirteen shots, with three of those seven baskets coming after they had grabbed offensive rebounds.

Gordon recovered to regain the lead but could never push their margin past three points.  Finally the Bears caught GC and went ahead (74-73) with 2:38 left on two EJ Day free throws.

Jaren Yang made pressure free throws late in the game

The rest of the way: “We made the plays we had to,” said Coach Murphy.  Eric Demers immediately made a three to give GC the lead for good as it turned out.  But there was also a key layup by Garrisson Duvivier in the last minute assisted by Jaren Yang.  Free throws were crucial and Jaren, Eric Demers, and Jake Hart made them.  Actually, Jake missed one but miraculously the ball stopped dead on the back of the rim with fifteen seconds left.  That’s a jump ball and the possession arrow favored the Scots. So Jake’s missed shot gave Gordon a fresh possession.

Eric Demers put up a career-high forty-one points with twenty in the first half and twenty-one in the second half.  In this breakout season, Eric has been able to get off shots against defenders of all sizes and speeds and shoot over 50% in twelve of the games.

Junior Garrisson Duvivier had his 15th double/double of this season.  He had sixteen points and fifteen rebounds.

Ahead is a neighborhood battle with Endicott on Wednesday night (7:30PM) in Beverly.  The winner of that game will be in second place in the Commonwealth Coast Conference behind Nichols.  In the previous Gulls/Scots matchup it was GC winning in overtime.  Realizing how hostile the atmosphere can be at Endicott, it would behoove the Scots to defeat the Gulls and avoid having to play a tournament game in Beverly.

Mikey Pettway (13 points) drives against Garrisson Duvivier

Two concerns in this game (for me) were the squandered lead and the twenty turnovers.  Players not named Eric and Garrisson need to lighten the scoring load on those two to prevent point-droughts when either of them cool off.  This afternoon’s twenty TO’s was the third time it has been that high.  The other two times were losses.  The Bears’ pressure had no part in the turnovers.  It was the passing.  Too many high-risk attempts.

Nice gathering afterward to hear the coaches retell the exploits of the four seniors.  The players will be missed.

Three weeks from now I could be writing about Gordon’s third CCC title in the last eight years.  Hope so.

Jaren Yang collected his 4th career block this afternoon for those keeping track at home!

“I was hoping to get Steve and Graham back into the game at the end, but it was so close,” said Coach Murphy.

Battle for a rebound – Garrisson had 15 rebounds vs Western New England

“Gordon took us out of the normal flow of our offense today,” said Coach Tabb.  “They didn’t leave certain shooters and it kept us from getting clean looks.”

“Good teams have to win tough games like this one,” said Coach Murphy.

Gordon has won ten of their last twelve games.

Gordon has now won nine of their last ten games with Western New England.

Western New England had a win over top-ranked Nichols at Nichols in early January.  They meet again in Springfield next Saturday.


Eric Demers 30

Garrisson Duvivier 28

EJ Day 23 (28 points)

Tim Reilly 17 (15 points)

Gordon 95

Western New England 70

Box from the game

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

Jaren Yang with parents

Jake Hart and family

Graham Tienhaara and family

Steve Vampatella and family

Coach Tod Murphy talks about his four seniors

Eric Demers layup with senior Steve Vampatella in the background

Jake Hart

Garrisson Duvivier (16 points) puts up a shot

Jaren Yang shoots a technical foul shot

Tim Reilly (15 points) contests an Eric Demers’ layup attempt

Two of the CCC’s best go head-to-head

Eric Demers makes a tough shot late in the game




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Western New England ends Gordon’s win streak 101-83

Junior Mikey Pettway reached 1000 points in tonight’s game.

Garrisson Duvivier (26 points, 17 rebounds)

(Amesbury MA) They came to see junior Mikey Pettway get his 1000th point and that’s not all they got.

The entire Western New England team played like thousand-point scorers as the Bears (7-8) dominated the Scots from beginning to end.

The GC winning streak ended abruptly at six. Also ending was a nine-game winning streak the Scots had against the team from Springfield (MA).

Mikey Pettway got his 1000th point in the first half and he got GC’s top scorer (Eric Demers) in foul trouble in that first half as well.

The Golden Bears feasted from long range in the first half making nine from out there.  The home team never trailed.

Despite the loss, Garrisson Duvivier outdid his amazing game of two days ago against Roger Williams.  Tonight’s was better because Garrisson missed only seven shots.  Who knew that he would become such a good foul shooter (8-for-9)?  26 points, 17 rebounds, 5 assists.

That six-game win streak carried some weight despite the fast start by WNE.  The Bears will cool down and the Scots will shoot by them….at least that was what I thought would happen.

Eric Demers had 27 points in limited minutes

Into the second half, I was feeling pretty smart.  Eric (Demers) came out making shots and 3+ minutes into the second half the score was 55-50.  But then Eric picked up his 4th foul and had to come out.

I said to myself at the time, “Someone is going to have to pick up a lot of scoring or this game is going to get away from us.”  That “someone” never appeared and Western New England continued to roll offensively.  By the time Eric (and his four fouls) returned (9:39) the home team led, 74-57, and the cows had left the barn.

Eric put up some points, thereafter, and Garrisson had his way in close but the Bears offense never ran out of good shots as they collected 101 points.  That is the third time an opponent has scored 100 points against GC and none of the games ended happily for the team from Wenham.  Obviously, the Gordon defense had a subpar evening and it cost them.

Ahead, on Saturday, is a trip to Milton for a game with Curry.  The Colonels have yet to win a Commonwealth Coast Conference game this season.  Last year they nearly upset the Scots in Milton.

Jaren Yang continued his run of good numbers with fourteen points and six assists.  Jaren made four three’s for GC.

A key to the recent Gordon successes has been the contributions of the second unit.  Those contributions didn’t happen in this one.  Instead of closing the gap against WNE, the gap widened.

Meanwhile, the Bears had six players in double figures.  Their best stat?  They had twenty-one assists and six turnovers.

You watch the way Western New England played tonight and you could see how they could defeat Nichols.  The Bears consistently made shots and the Bison had some cool spots.  The “cool spot” for Gordon tonight was early on and they never recovered.

Avelino Damoura made his Gordon debut in the final minutes.

Efficiency Chart

Garrisson Duvivier 42

Mikey Pettway 25 (31 points,6 assists)

Jaren Yang 22 (14 points, 6 assists)

Eric Demers 21 (27 points)

Alex Sikorski 19 (14 points)

Western New England 121

Gordon 91

Box from the game





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Sam Johnson (27 rebounds) leads Gordon past Western New England 74-59

Senior Sam Johnson collected twenty-seven rebounds in the Gordon win

Senior Sam Johnson collected twenty-seven rebounds in the Gordon win

Sam Johnson and Tyler Johnson

Sam Johnson and Tyler Johnson

(Wenham MA) This was one of those, “Remember the game……,” games.

Senior Sam Johnson had a memorable Saturday afternoon as Gordon defeated Western New England, 74-59.

Sam already had double/double by halftime and ended up with a career-high twenty-seven rebounds to go with sixteen points.

The Scots (10-7) were hot early (13-2), squandered most of it (42-40 five minutes into second half), and then reheated in the final ten minutes to carry the day.

Western New England (3-13) shot poorly (33%) and was buried (45-29) on the boards.

Plenty of negatives for the Bears but one giant positive was their pressure defense.  They turned GC over TWENTY-SEVEN times.  Last time the Scots had a number like that was in February of 2013 against ENC.

Jaren Yang leads a break

Jaren Yang leads a break

Trying to dribble through double-teams and passes to who-knows-where made the performance look like something you’d see in early November.  GC can absolutely expect full pressure in next week’s games (ENC on Wednesday, Nichols on Saturday) and must be better than they were today to face it.

It’s pretty bad when the team wins and I’m crying about style points!  The good news? The Scots are in the hunt in the Commonwealth Coast Conference, one back from Endicott and Roger Williams with three losses.

Streaking Wentworth gave Nichols their 3rd loss this afternoon.  I am not sure what concerns me more; facing Wentworth in a game that matters or those twenty-seven turnovers this afternoon.

Jake Haar was part of the GC hot start with three 3’s in the first half.

Noah dials long distance

Noah dials long distance

Noah was also on target from beyond the arc (or was it ark?) with three of them which is a season high.  A couple of Noah’s triples in the second half of the second half excited the Bennett Center partisans as the Scots rode his accuracy to double-digit leads.

The Bears were severely beaten up on Efficiency.  The combination of poor shooting and few rebounds did in the team from Springfield (MA).  None of the Bears even reached ten in Efficiency.


Sam Johnson 35

Garrisson Duvivier 13 (5 steals, 5 assists)

Noah Szilagyi 12 (15 points)

Jake Haar 10 (12 points)

Gordon 87

Western New England 44

Sam Johnson scored sixteen points.

Sam Johnson scored sixteen points.

WN has a win over Endicott and only lost to ENC by three.  The Scots escaped a close game as well because the Bears’ shooting (1-for-10 on 3’s in the second half) was off.

Three more home games left.  I have not been overwhelmed by the student turnout yet.

Freshman Mike McCourt was the Bears top scorer.  I was impressed with his Rajon Rondo fake pass driving the lane.

Sam’s record-setting performance wasn’t really a surprise.  Why?  He plays the same way every game…all-out.  He wants every rebound and unless teams find ways to prevent him, he’ll get more rebounds than anyone else.  Against Western New England, last in the CCC in rebounding, you went in liking his chances of having a big game on the boards.

Box from the game

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

Game on

Game on

Jake Hart on the move

Jake Hart on the move

Luke Meyer

Luke Meyer

Sam Traicoff

Sam Traicoff

Mike McCourt guards Garrisson Duvivier

Mike McCourt guards Garrisson Duvivier

Halftime entertainment

Halftime entertainment

Mikey Pettway

Mikey Pettway

Nana Appiah shoots over Garrisson Duvivier

Nana Appiah shoots over Garrisson Duvivier

Garrisson Duvivier in the lane

Garrisson Duvivier in the lane

Tim Reilly and Brett Bowman

Tim Reilly and Brett Bowman





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Filed under Gordon men's basketball 2016-17, Western New England

Late-game perfection gets it done for Gordon 74-70 over Western New England

(Springfield MA) Perfectly delightful final 1:40 for the Scots in Springfield tonight.

Gordon (8-10/5-6) had everything go their way in those final one hundred seconds and a discouraging four-game slide came to an end.

74-70 was the final score with Western New England (6-12/4-7) getting on the wrong end of it.

Crucial win for GC. Why? The Scots, at least temporarily, stopped their descent into can-we-make-the-playoffs territory. Gordon now holds the tie-breaker over Western New England with their two wins over the Bears this season.

A great web feed from WNE. I usually have an IPad going along with my computer to catch the play-by-play as I watch the game. Works for me.

Part of the delight in the end game tonight was watching the other team try the easy-fix, long-range approach. It didn’t work for them either. WNE made one-of-four tries but it wasn’t enough against a GC team that dominated the late-game little things, none of which included the launch-and-pray solution.

In the successful end game, Gordon missed a layup but there was Garrisson to turn a rebound into a basket. GC up two (69-67).

After a WNE miss, Garrisson was fouled. Made the first (70-67) and missed the second but there was Sam Johnson (top rebounder in the conference) to snare an offensive rebound and continue the Gordon possession.

Jaren Yang was fouled and made both free throws. GC up five (72-67) with twenty-three seconds left.

Mike Gelineau (24 points) connected long range putting the Bears close (72-70) with fifteen seconds to go.

A timeout gave Gordon coach Tod Murphy a chance to get Noah Szilagyi into the game. Why important? No question Western New England was going to foul. Noah was 23-for-26 from the foul line, including his last ten straight. In he came, got fouled, and put the game away with two straight money freebies.

As I said at the start, everything came together in a nice victory package in the final 1:40.

Before that? It was up for grabs. The home team had a 20-9 lead in the first half but the Scots closed in (31-29) by halftime. The second half was tight to the end. Unofficially I saw six ties and six lead changes. Anybody’s game for sure. On this night the visitors got the job done.

It was close enough so that even the efficiency numbers for the two teams came out to 72.

The heart of what Gordon does consistently well is the inside play of two of the best in the Commonwealth Coast Conference; Sam Johnson and Garrisson Duvivier.

Sam (21 points/17 rebounds) hasn’t seen a rebound yet that he won’t go after with 100% effort. Garrisson (20 points) get shots to drop in the heaviest of traffic.

Good to see Josh Ribeiro get some first-half action.


Efficiency chart

Garrisson Duvivier 24 (4 steals)

Sam Johnson 23

Mike Gelineau 19 (24 points)

Zack Askew 14 (14 points)

Luis Agrait 14 (13 points/6 assists)

Next up for the Scots will be ENC on Saturday (3PM). The Lions have beaten Endicott twice in case you’re wondering how good they are. Gordon has not beaten any of the top five (Nichols, Endicott, Wentworth, ENC, Roger Williams) so far. A strongly supportive crowd at the Bennett Center might make the difference.


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Gordon wins conference opener 73-62 over Western New England

Mikey Pettway (16 points) drives on Garrisson Duvivier

Mikey Pettway (16 points) drives on Garrisson Duvivier

Jaren Yang (17 points) looks to pass

Jaren Yang (17 points) looks to pass

(Wenham MA) This was anybody’s game until the Scots pulled away in the final 6 ½ minutes to defeat Western New England, 73-62, on Wednesday night in the Commonwealth Coast Conference opener for both squads.

The Golden Bears (1-4) trailed by just two (59-57) with 6:32 left but went into a serious scoring drought over the next 4+ minutes and never recovered. The visitors had only Mike Gelineau’s free throw to show for the extended dry spell.

Meanwhile, Gordon (3-2) collected nine points over those 4+ minutes to gain control of the outcome. An offensive putback by Sam Johnson started things. Then it was Jaren Yang from long range and finally two free throws and a layup by freshman Garrisson Duvivier.

The sequence of almost unanswered offense put GC in front (68-58) for good.

Sam Johnson shoots a free throw. The GC junior had his third double/double of the season

Sam Johnson shoots a free throw. The GC junior had his third double/double of the season

Both Garrisson and Sam registered double/double’s for Gordon. Garrisson now has two straight DD’s while, for Sam, it was his 3rd of the season.

If the Efficiency Stat is any kind of a gauge, and I believe it is excellent, then Jaren Yang had his best game in a GC uniform. The young man from the Left Coast came out at 19 getting seventeen points and having only two missed shots from the floor. Better shot selection has been the key, in my opinion, to Jaren’s strong start in the 2015-16 season.

Efficiency Stat

Garrisson Duvivier 21 (12 points/12 rebounds)

Jaren Yang 19 (17 points)

Mike Gelineau 13 (18 points)

Mikey Pettway 13 (16 points/3 assists)

Eric Demers 12 (17 points/4 assists)

Gordon 81

Western New England 52

Sam Johnson led all rebounders with thirteen.

Mike Gelineau (18 points) fires over Eric Demers

Mike Gelineau (18 points) fires over Eric Demers

During that deadly dry spell the Golden Bears missed four layups, a jump shot, a three, and a free throw. That’s cold!

Eric Demers recovered from his 6-for-25 cold spell on the road, over the past two games, and was a warm 7-for-14 at the Bennett Center tonight. The talented freshman also had four assists.

Season high in turnovers for Gordon (21). Some were on extra passes while some others were on unsuccessful attempts at highlight-reel passes. I’m a big fan of assisted baskets. GC had thirteen of them in this game.

Good to see Richie Armand in uniform. Last time Gordon faced Western New England, Richie hit a three (his only shot of the game) with five seconds left to defeat the Golden Bears by two. Word was that Richie was the fifth option for that final shot but found an open look and drained a game-winner.

The rest of December Gordon will play on the road. They start that 4-game slate with a visit to CCC opponent Roger Williams on Saturday afternoon. Can GC get its first road win in Bristol?

Box Score

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

Jaren Yang in a den of Golden Bears

Jaren Yang in a den of Golden Bears

Luke Meyer and Mikey Pettway

Luke Meyer and Mikey Pettway

Garrisson Duvivier in the lane

Garrisson Duvivier in the lane

Garrisson Duvivier (12 points) finishes

Garrisson Duvivier (12 points) finishes

Nathaniel Martin and Udoka Obiora contest a loose ball

Nathaniel Martin and Udoka Obiora contest a loose ball

Josh Ribeiro blocks out

Josh Ribeiro blocks out

Mikey Pettway breaks after a Gordon turnover

Mikey Pettway breaks after a Gordon turnover

floor burns

floor burns

Andre Joyner looks for an opening

Andre Joyner looks for an opening




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Richie Armand’s late three saves Gordon 59-57 at Western New England

Richie Armand (shown here against Babson) hit a three with five seconds left against Western New England to give GC the win

Richie Armand (shown here against Babson) hit a three with five seconds left against Western New England to give GC the win

Taylor Bajema (shown here against Roger Williams) had 12 points, 8 rebounds, and assisted on the winning basket

Taylor Bajema (shown here against Roger Williams) had 12 points, 8 rebounds, and assisted on the winning basket

(Amesbury MA) Wow!

Richie Armand hit a three with five seconds left and Gordon pulled off a tense 59-57 Commonwealth Coast Conference win at Springfield over Western New England on Tuesday night.

Frustrating loss for the Golden Bears (8-12).  The home team led most of the game and reached a 16-point margin (44-28) five minutes into the second half.  But the Scots (8-11) ran twelve straight (baskets by Sam Johnson, Taylor Bajema, Dominic Paradis, and Hans Miersma) to get back into contention.  With four minutes left, Hans tied the game, 52-52, with a free throw.  The rest of the game was a search for a really big shot.

Taylor tied the score with a jump shot with 55 seconds left.  WNE’s Musa Elsir followed with one of two free throws at 37 seconds putting the Golden Bears in front by a point (57-56).

The Scots needed two for the win but instead got a three from Richie with an assist to Taylor with five seconds left.

Mike Gelineau of Western New England shoots for the tie

Mike Gelineau of Western New England shoots for the tie

The last time the two teams played Mike Gelineau took a buzzer-beating shot from mid-court for a tie and missed.  In this game it was Mike shooting again, this time from in front of the WNE bench.  Mike’s shot just missed as the buzzer sounded.  That make would have been a game-winner!

Gordon played without Jason Dempsey (fluid on the knee) again.  Jason had 18 points and 10 rebounds in the first meeting.

Taylor Bajema, who had missed the first game versus Western New England, topped the Efficiency chart with an 18.  He had twelve points and eight rebounds.

The GB’s had won four straight Commonwealth Coast Conference games before the Gordon loss.

Similar to Gordon, the Golden Bears struggle mightily at home (2-10) but are 6-2 on the road.  Gordon is 1-7 at home and 6-4 away from the formerly friendly confines of the Bennett Center.

The Scots will be in Dudley, weather permitting, to face undefeated Nichols on Thursday night.  Now that’s a road win that would get some serious attention!

Freshman Jaren Yang has a string of twenty straight free throws going

Freshman Jaren Yang has a string of twenty straight free throws going

Jaren Yang has now made twenty straight free throws.

Sam Johnson (six points/seven rebounds) and Dominic Paradis (10 points/six rebounds) came off the Gordon bench to make significant contributions.

Taylor Bajema 18
Hans Miersma 14 (14 points/9 rebounds)
Musa Elsir 14 (13 points)
Sam Johnson 12
Dominic Paradis 11

Gordon 73
Western New England 63


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Filed under 2014-15 Gordon College men's basketball, Western New England