Tag Archives: Coach Tod Murphy

Gordon routs Salve Regina 93-70

Seniors Ben North, Parker Omslaer, and David Massillon were honored.
Garrett Sattazahn (25 points)

(Wenham MA) You had to wonder:

“Which team is 14-3?”

“Which team lost by twenty the last time the two teams played?”

Salve Regina was the first and Gordon was the second.

On this afternoon, as the game unfolded, it was easy to be confused.

Gordon clearly dominated Salve Regina from beginning to end and earned a satisfying, 93-70, win on Saturday afternoon’s Senior Day.

“That was something special out there for sure,” said Gordon coach Tod Murphy afterwards.

Parker Omslaer (17 points)

The Scots (8-10) in the Commonwealth Coast Conference jumped out by ten points early (18-7) and had the margin up to twenty (44-23) at halftime.

Passes were connecting and shots were falling for the home team.

A loss or win in this last game of the regular season wasn’t going to change either team’s place in the standings.  SR was assured of second and GC was assured of seventh.

Bryce Smith (10 assists and 10 points)

The Scots will host a play-in game with Curry on Monday night.  A win there (Curry is 0-12 on the road and have lost sixteen straight games) and Gordon will travel to Newport to face Salve Regina again.

“We wanted Salve to know that they won’t be getting a rollover game if we play them on Tuesday,” said Coach Murphy.

Gordon honored their seniors (Parker Omslaer, Ben North, David Massillon) before the game.

“It’s always a good time when you get to win on Senior Night,” said David Massillon post-game.

You expected that the Seahawks would make things more competitive in the second half, but they didn’t.

Michael Makiej (16 points and 8 rebounds)

The Scots scored the first ten points of the half and their lead enlarged to thirty points after three minutes.

Two Parker Omslaer layups (one assisted by Bryce Smith) surrounded three’s by Ben North and Bryce Smith provided the ten unanswered points for Gordon.

“Parker and Ben were getting a ton of good looks,” recalled David Massillon.

Parker (17 points) was a perfect 8-for-8 from the floor.

David Massillon

Bryce had a double/double with ten points and a season-high ten assists.

Michael Makiej totaled sixteen points while leading everyone with eight rebounds.

Gordon has now won three straight games.  “We’ve had a couple of games lately where we’ve shown what we’re capable of,” said Coach Murphy.  “When we put together defense and offense, we can beat the top teams in the conference.”

Ben North

The 30-point Gordon lead early in the half turned the rest of the half into a more relaxed state.  The only tense moment was when Parker went down with a knee injury with five minutes left.

“I saw the season pass before me when he went down,” said Coach Murphy.  “I panicked when it happened because he has been playing so well.”

I asked Parker about the knee afterwards.  “I think I’ll be okay for Monday,” he said. “It’s a big game.  I’ll play through it.”

Junior Garrett Sattazahn continues to put up big numbers.  Today it was twenty-five points, including seven made three’s.

Garrett Sattazahn drives

“G (Garrett) is on a roll right now,” said David Massillon.  “I love it when he makes a ton of shots.”

“Garrett has been one of the top players in the CCC the last 3-4 weeks,” added Coach Murphy.

How far can the Scots go in the tournament? 

“We came out today with aggression and passion,” said Ben North afterwards.  “We have to play each game ahead the same way.”

Parker Omslaer

Parker: “The five years here went by like a flash.  I’m happy to play with my brothers and I’m glad we got the win.  I’m ready for the playoffs.”

Ben: “It’s been a long road for me to get here.  It’s been a wild four years and I wouldn’t trade any second of it.”

The score differential gave both coaches the opportunity to use all their players.

Gordon’s representative in the G-League (Eric Demers) was in the crowd with Lauren and their son.  “I’m getting paid to do something I enjoy, play basketball,” Eric said.

(The pictures will enlarge.)

Champ Chipman
Jayson Clayton
Jordan Bretton
Xahn Frater
Caleb Scott
Ben North
Zach Quanico
Mikey Spencer
Kevin Kelly
Up fake
Ryan St. Clair
Parker Omslaer family
David Massillon family
Ben North family
Lauren/Eric Demers

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Parker Omslaer gets 1000th point in Gordon’s 84-62 win over Curry

Parker Omslaer reached 1000 points on this shot
Parker Omslaer celebrates with his parents afterwards
Parker spins into the lane

(Wenham MA) Big day for Parker Omslaer at Gordon on Wednesday night.

The 6’11” graduate student tallied twenty-four points and entered the 1000-point club at Gordon.

Parker and his teammates combined to defeat Curry, 84-62, to add to the evening’s pleasantries.

“I was just relying on my teammates to get me the ball,” said Parker afterwards.  “Thankfully, they trusted me to make my post moves and I was finishing.”

Frankie Santiago (18 points)

Parker ended his historic evening with twenty-four points which was a career high.

The Colonels (2-13) were certainly a good team for Parker to operate against since their tallest player (Lowelle Torres) is just 6-3.

“We should have dominated the inside more than we did tonight,” explained GC coach Tod Murphy.  “They were working with a 6-3 center who was working his tale off.”

Battle for a rebound

“The win wasn’t pretty but it’s better to win ugly than to lose ugly,” added Coach Murphy.

The Colonels entered the game with significant baggage; five straight losses, 0-6 on the road, sixteen straight losses to Gordon.

But that didn’t seem to matter in the first half.  The visitors made shots and capitalized on GC miscues (13 turnovers), in fact had a 33-30 lead with three minutes remaining in the first half.

Frankie Santiago had nine points for Curry and teammate JayQuan Leonard had five assists in a strong first half.

JayQuan Leonard

The Scots got their collective acts together in the second half.  They toned down the turnovers and ramped up the assists.

The GC lead became 51-40 seven minutes into the second half and the tiring Colonels had trouble preventing inside scores.  The Scots finished with fifty points in the paint.

Parker needed twenty-one points to reach 1000 at the start of the game.  As the game’s outcome began to be settled the big question was whether he could reach 1000.

With his parents watching from a distance, Parker joined the “club” with five minutes left in the game.  After receiving a pass inside, Parker turned right and banked home the special basket.

Bryce Smith (14 points)

“I’m happy for Parker to be able to get his 1000th point tonight at home,” said Coach Murphy.  “Hopefully that will take off some of the pressure on him moving ahead.”

Justin Yu (13 points), Bryce Smith (14 points), and Michael Makiej (14 points) combined to shoot a red-hot 16-for-22 for Gordon.

Garrett Sattazahn was out with Covid.  Treyton Tebbs took his place.  “Treyton was good defensively and got a lot of rebounds (10) for us,” said Coach Murphy.

Justin Yu (13 points)

Garrett is expected back on Saturday against Endicott.

The win tonight evens Gordon’s record at 7-7.

Frankie Santiago (18 points) was the top scorer for Curry.

I asked Parker if he remembered the first basket he scored for Gordon and he said he couldn’t.  But he did share this freshman year memory: “All I remember from freshman year was Garrisson (Duvivier) beating me up in practice every day.  He’s what got me to this point.  I thank Garrisson for that.”

(The pictures will enlarge.)

Coach Tod Murphy with Parker and his family
Ben North
Michael Makiej (14 points)
Todd Robinson
Ball on the floor
Gehrig Zimmerman
Treyton Tebbs holds off a defender
Parker in for two

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Gordon rallies to win 94-91 over Roger Williams in OT

Garrisson Duvivier (33 points) overpowered Roger Williams inside

David Massillon (15) pressures Austin Coene (34 points)

(Wenham MA) Neither coach could believe it.

Gordon somehow, some way rallied back to reach overtime and went from there to defeat disappointed Roger Williams, 94-91, on Saturday afternoon.

“We had a nine-point lead and two free throws with 1 ½ minutes left,” said RW coach Mike Tully afterwards.  “We missed the free throws and then we panicked.  We never should have lost the game.”

Gordon coach Tod Murphy was on the other side of it.  “I can’t explain the win.  It was a special game and we got lucky.”

Eric Demers (35 points) finds a way to get a shot off

The stars were surely out as three of last year’s Commonwealth Coast Conference first-teamers, Austin Coene (34 points), Garrisson Duvivier (33 points), Eric Demers (35 points) had big afternoons.

The Hawks (8-8) took a 10-9 lead to a 29-12 lead in six minutes.  During this stretch the visitors from Bristol (RI) went through the GC zone for 4 layups and went over it for a three.  Meanwhile, the Scots missed three 3’s and had six turnovers.

“The problem for us was that it became the Eric and Garrison Show,” explained Coach Murphy.  “Yes, they can win you ballgames but if we take the other three out of the game suddenly it’s two-on-five instead of five-on-five.”

JJ Pfohl had twelve points for RW

For a team on a thirteen-game win streak, a 37-28 deficit (at halftime) was far from insurmountable.

Back came the Scots (15-1) in the second half and with 5 minutes left a Parker Omslaer dunk had GC within one (63-62).

The paying-attention Gordon fan had to figure that Roger Williams was about to be passed.  Gordon hadn’t lost since November……..and all that!

Coach Tully called time.  His Hawks then went back to making shots and Gordon returned to just the opposite.

Two minutes later the Hawks had rattled off ten unanswered points; two 3’s by Rich Pugliese, a layup by Ian Carmichael, and a jump shot from Austin Coene.

Garrisson Duvivier (33 points) muscles his way to the basket

Now it was Coach Murphy’s turn to call a timeout.  With three minutes left, the Scots trailed by eleven (73-62).

Coach Murphy recalled that Garrisson Duvivier had something to say in the timeout.  He told the team that it would be part of the “process of getting better.  Let’s get better,” he said, “during the next three minutes.”

Coach Murphy added, “I didn’t think that we had enough time, but we did.”

Another thing that happened during that timeout was that Gordon changed to a man-to-man defense.

“We work on man-to-man every day in practice,” said Garrisson afterwards.  “We needed energy and stops, and it worked out for the best.”

Freshman David Massillon was inserted into the lineup and during the final three minutes he had two steals that led to four points.

Eric Demers gets to the basket

Roger Williams was held scoreless for the final three minutes and Gordon was able to rally all the way back.  Eric Demers hit a big three to send the game into overtime.

Again, credit Roger Williams.  They recovered from end-of-regulation lapse and jumped to a five-point lead (84-79) two minutes into the five-minute overtime.

But also, credit Gordon.  They turned the final three minutes into fifteen points led by Garrisson Duvivier.

Foul trouble caught up to the Hawks and they tried to cover 6-6 Garrisson with guards including Austin Coene.  That was costly because Garrisson is too much for players his size.  Put a guard on him and points and free throws will follow.  Top scorer Austin Coene fouled out with 1:45 left in OT and the Hawks had only a layup to show for the rest of the way.  They did get a three (JJ Pfohl) at the buzzer.

Garrisson Duvivier gets between defenders

“I tried to take advantage of the size difference,” said GD.  “If they doubled, I had guys I could kick it out to.”

The margin was just two (90-88) for Gordon with thirty-six seconds left.  The Scots held onto the ball for twenty-three seconds of the remaining time and then Eric Demers got to the rim.  Garrisson went from there to block a shot down the other end and then put GC ahead 94-88 with two free throws.

“The guys never stopped believing that we were going to win,” said Garrisson.  “The coaches told us things that worked.”

Coach Murphy: “You’ve got to have games like this in order to have a special season.  It was silly that we waited so long to make the plays we needed to make.  At least we got the wake-up bell before the game was over!”

Garrisson: “The streak (now fourteen) doesn’t matter to us.  Our record doesn’t matter to us.  All we care about is getting better each game.  In the second half we got better.”

Noah Szilagyi finished with ten points and had an important three during the comeback in regulation.

Gordon made 26-of-31 free throw attempts

The Gordon free throw shooting was excellent and they had plenty of opportunities.  The Scots ended 26-31 for the game.  During the second half?  14-for 14 and they needed every one of them.

Eric Demers had a season-high thirty-five points.  That was enough to put him in 9th place on the all-time scoring list ahead of Tim Kehoe.

Garrisson’s 33 points was his second highest point production of his career.  He had thirty-four against Nichols as a freshman.  GD’s points today moved him beyond Doug Lindland.  He’s now in second place with 1675 points.  Jim Petty heads the all-time scoring list with 1902.

Garrisson Duvivier eyes the hoop

Garrisson added seventeen rebounds to earn his 13th double/double of this season.  He tied a season high with four blocks.  He also tied a season high with seven turnovers.

“At the end of the game, Garrisson took over and refused to be stopped,” said Coach Murphy.

RW’s Austin Coene had a nice stat line (34 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists) but he too had seven turnovers.

Last year at Gordon, freshman JJ Pfohl, with a 5-point average, hit the Scots with twenty-five points.  In the same game Eric reached 1000 points.

Garrisson Duvivier slams

Gordon has won three straight from Roger Williams.

Both teams were 18-9 last season.

Good crowd at the Bennett Center in the condensed stands.  They saw a terrific game.

Box from the game

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

The Bennett Center crowd was happy with the result

Josh Crutchfield and Noah Szilagyi apply pressure

RW coach Mike Tully

Garrisson Duvivier defends an inbounds attempt

Shirt tug

 

 

 

 

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Make that seven straight: Gordon 99 Johnson and Wales 91

Freshman David Massillon (23 points and 8 rebounds) for Gordon

Eric Demers (28 points) made five three’s in the first half

(Wenham MA) Welcome to the Gordon family, David Massillon.

The young man from Lynn and Pingree (Hamilton) moved from the “another-good-player” zone into the Wow zone.

David had twenty-three points (previous high nine) and eight rebounds (previous high six) and helped Gordon drop Johnson & Wales, 99-91, on Saturday afternoon.

The Scots (8-1) take a seven-game win streak into next week’s games with Eastern Nazarene and Framingham State.

This was another misleading final score.  Gordon was up by twenty/plenty in the closing moments and opted for the “Blessed are the merciful” approach.  JWU said “Thanks,” kept their starters in, pressed full-court, and narrowed the gap so quickly that Coach Tod Murphy had to return his starters for the closing seconds.

Garrisson Duvivier (19 points, 11 rebounds)

“I hated to put the starters back in and it’s my fault that the reserves didn’t do better against pressure,” said Coach Murphy.  “Some of them just don’t get the reps against pressure.”

Minus the late-game closeness, the Scots once again put a lot of points together.  They had fifty-six points in the first half.

Eric Demers finished with twenty-eight points and had twenty-four of them in a dazzling first half.  He canned five-of-seven three’s.

The Wildcats (3-5) didn’t have a starter over 6’4”.  “In the beginning we were exposing their bigs with Parker (6-10) and Garrison (6-6),” explained Jake Haar.  “They couldn’t contend with the size.”

Eric Demers gets in close

And then you add a red-hot Eric Demers to the mix.  “When Eric is scoring like he was, it just opens up so many things,” said Jake.

In the win streak there have been moments in each game where GC has bunched points to gain sizable separation.  Against Colby (Thursday night) it was late in the game.  Today it was late in the first half.

At 5:58 Gordon led, 35-24.  The next 3+ minutes were all Scots as they scored thirteen in a row.

Brian Hogan-Gary (32 points) had 25 of them in the second half

While JWU missed seven shots and had three turnovers, Gordon got a dunk by Parker Omslaer and three’s by Eric Demers and Jake Haar both set up by Garrisson Duvivier.

The resulting, 48-24, lead was a mountain the visitors from Providence (RI) couldn’t scale.

Coach Tod Murphy loved the “W” but was a little disappointed with some of the offense he saw in the second half when his team had the 20+ point lead. “It’s human nature,” he said, “when you get a big lead like that to start thinking that ‘I can go ahead and get mine now.’”

Parker Omslaer (12 points) in a crowd

Gordon’s use of a zone defense continues to stimulate plenty of discussion.  No question, it is a work in progress.  No question it looks exploitable at times.  But so far it has thrown teams off from their normal ways of scoring points.

But the defense still needs work.  “In terms of defensive effort, it wasn’t great,” said assistant coach Didier Dinh.  “It wasn’t terrible but it’s not where we need to be for a long run this season.”

It’s the open three’s that seem to be driving the GC coaching staff crazy.  “Near the end of the first half we left #0 (Donovian Maxfield) a couple of times because we didn’t get where we’re supposed to be,” said Coach Murphy.

“At halftime we told the guys that the score might as well be 0-0 because we gave them some life when we gave them a couple of three’s late in the half,” added Coach Dinh.

The defense may have flaws, but it still has been a plus in the 8-1 start.

David Massillon (11-for-12 from the foul line)

UNE came out last season with a “fire up three’s” approach and it was new to the Commonwealth Coast Conference.  They beat Gordon with it and even surprised Nichols with a win over them.  But the coaches in the CCC are talented enough to prepare their teams to handle new schemes and adjust.  UNE is off to a 2-8 start this season.  Point?  The GC zone must get better or it may eventually become a liability.

“The run so far shows that we have a good amount of talent,” said Coach Dinh.  “The ultimate goal is to still be playing in March.”

Eric Demers had twenty-four points in the first half and the Wildcats’ Brian Hogan-Gary dropped twenty-five in the second half.

Eric Demers gets off a three

Eric feasted on one-on-one coverage, creating shots from almost any spot he chose.  Brian (6’4”) attacked the Gordon big men and hustled for the full forty minutes.

The play of freshman David Massillon (6’4”) was exceptional. He was a handful for any defender near the basket.  He also had the good touch to make 11-of-12 free throws.  What’s not to like?

I checked in with Coach Murphy on why they were playing at home on New Year’s Eve afternoon. “There won’t be anyone here,” he conceded, “but I wanted a game before the league starts on January 3rd.  I also wanted to do it as late as possible so that our guys could stay home longer.”

Plenty of “formers” in the house this afternoon.  I saw Greg Walker, Dave Dempsey, Keith Krass, Jerry Logan, Jake Hart, Graham Tienhaara, and Sam Johnson.  All are gainfully employed.  Most of them liked what they were seeing of the zone defense.

Sam Johnson, Jake Hart, Graham Tienhaara

Jake Haar on the team: “When we move the ball, we’re pretty unstoppable. We’ve got five starters that are unselfish.”

Jake Haar (from Californina) on the current New England weather: “I wear three jackets and a hat when I go outside.”

Jake told me that it was going to be in the 80’s in the part of California that he is from next week.  He’ll be there for a week over Christmas.

Instructions

Johnson & Wales will be hosting Nichols on Tuesday.  The result will give us a comparative score before our two CCC matches with the Bison.

J&W are part of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC).  They were 19-10 last year and 28-3 in 2015-16.

I will be watching the next five games from Amesbury and Newtown.  Lord willing I’ll catch the Endicott game on January 10th.  The away league games (Jan 3rd UNE and Jan 5th Nichols) will be tough ones.

“We want to finish the semester strong,” said Coach Murphy.  “Our league is going to be a title bout every single night.”

Box from the game

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

AJ Terry (2) finds Parker Omslaer (44)

Arms

David Massillon eyes the hoop

Donovian Maxfield (22 points)

Jake Haar (20) leads the attack

Lane humor

Matt Madoian (5) blocks

Facial

Garrisson Duvivier to the hoop

 

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Gordon scores a 105-89 win over Curry

Eric Demers (19 points) on his way to the basket

Freshman David Massillon gets a layup

(Wenham MA) The points were flowing.

The defense?  Not so much in the second half.

But when you build up a 36-point lead, some unpleasing defense in a second half isn’t fatal.

Gordon downed Curry, 105-89, on Saturday afternoon in a Commonwealth Coast Conference game at the Bennett Center.

The Scots (5-1) have now won four straight.

AJ Terry (12 points) sails to the hoop

Ahead for GC are three home games (Western New England, Colby, and Johnson & Wales) in the next seven days.

The big difference in this season’s Gordon team is their commitment to playing zone defense.

“I hate the zone,” said GC coach Tod Murphy after today’s game, “but I hate losing even more.  In order to get our five best players on the court we had to use it.”

Senior Garrisson Duvivier saw the new defense as a work in progress: “We still have a lot of work to do on the zone, but we’ve done pretty well using it so far.”

There have been no complaints about the offense.  “We’ve got a very explosive offense team,” explained Coach Murphy.  “If we play better defense than we did tonight I think we can compete with anyone.”

Jake Haar (12 points) lines up a three

The Scots did give up a ton of points but most of them came after GC had a 72-36 advantage with 12:41 remaining.

At that point the Gordon coaching staff remembered the New Testament verse that starts, “Blessed are the merciful……….”

The Gordon reserves finished the game and during that segment the Colonels (0-7) went nuts from long range and had a 53-point final 12:41.

“The idea of the zone defense is not only to keep our best players in the game but also to prevent/defend the three-point shot,” said Coach Murphy.  Obviously, the 53 points, many coming from downtown, didn’t settle well with the coach.

But the bigger picture was that when the starters played, the visitors struggled mightily.

Garrisson Duvivier in traffic

The Scots were up, 10-0, after three minutes and, 25-3, after eight minutes.  The lead at halftime was, 52-24.  There were few defensive issues that I could see.

Curry’s sixty-five points in the second half is a nice change for them.  How blessed we are to regularly have competitive teams!

How would you handle these numbers?  Curry is 2-80 over the last 3+ seasons.  They have now lost 55 consecutive Commonwealth Coast Conference games.  Last win in the CCC was against Salve Regina in February of 2015.  The Colonels have now lost thirty straight games.

Luke Meyer chases a loose ball

That is why is was good to see them happy/excited over their team’s second half performance.

All the Scots in uniform played and everyone scored.

Junior AJ Terry is an exciting player to watch.  His hustle is noticeable.  He made a great save of a ball going out-of-bounds that set up an Eric Demers’ triple.  AJ set a career high in points (12).

Gordon figured out early on that they could get to the basket for high-percentage shots.  They ended up with forty-eight points in the paint.  That’s smart basketball.

Freshman John Saxe eyes the basket

Eric Demers was the leading scorer with nineteen points in limited playing time.  Today’s points give the GC junior (1168) which moved him past Jered Stewart and Andrew Ellrod into 14th on the Gordon career scoring list.

Coach Murphy: “We’ve had a good start to the season but we haven’t played any of the top teams yet.  We have been getting production from a lot of different players.”

Last time Gordon played Curry at the Bennett Center, Garrisson reached 1000 points.

Today was my first in-person look at the team as the pictures will show.  I expect, Lord willing, to attend the three upcoming home games.

Social News: Jason Dempsey and Taylor McSherry are now engaged. Taylor was a terrific soccer player for the Scots.  She is an assistant soccer coach at Bentley.

Box from the game

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

Facial

Ben North drives

Ben North heads in for a layup

Brett Bowman catches a high pass

Senior Brett Bowman lines up a three

Cody Hunt baseline

Cody Hunt free throw

Garrisson Duvivier in close

GD jams

Marcus Retegues drives

Parker Omslaer

Jake Haar finishes

Josh Crutchfield glides in

Senior Josh Ribeiro puts up a shot

 

 

 

 

 

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Eric Demers (31 points) guides Gordon past Emerson 89-62

Eric Demers had a career day connecting on twelve shots in a 31-point performance

Geoff Gray was one of several Emerson defenders who tried to cool off the GC sophomore

(Wenham MA) “When Eric is shooting the ball the way he was today, there aren’t too many teams that are going to beat us,” explained Gordon coach Tod Murphy after the Scots routed Emerson, 89-62.

The “Eric” Coach Murphy was referring to was sophomore Eric Demers who had a couldn’t-miss Saturday afternoon with a career-high 31 points.

The Lions (6-5) put at least three different defenders (by my count) on Eric with no noticeable decline in his production.  The Falmouth (MA) grad made only three from long range but had nine other makes off drives and jump shots.

The Scots (4-4) broke away from a 12-7 deficit in the first five minutes and followed Eric’s eighteen-point, first-half to go on a 42-20 run over the final fifteen minutes of that half.

Josh Ribeiro pressured by two Emerson defenders

I expected that Emerson would cut into GC’s halftime 49-32 spread in the second half, but I was wrongly assuming that Eric would cool off. He didn’t, and his additional thirteen points led the Scots (4-4) into leads of over twenty points.

On this afternoon Emerson had no defensive answers and when Eric left the game for good, with eleven minutes remaining, Gordon was in front, 71-43.

“It was a great game to end with before the Christmas break,” added Coach Murphy.  “It was truly a team win with everyone on the roster getting to play in front of the home crowd.”

I told Coach Murphy at the outset of my interview that he was really going to have to work hard to find anything he didn’t like in the win over Emerson.  He laughed and said, “Coaches can always find something to point to that needs improvement.  I still think that our defense needs to improve significantly.”

With the outside game cooking, the Scots inside game wasn’t in the heavy demand it usually is.  Coach Murphy was quick to praise post-player Garrisson Duvivier: “Garrisson is such a team player that he saw how hot Eric was and kept feeding him the ball.”

Garrisson, himself, did get a terrific pass from teammate Josh Ribeiro that set him up for a crowd-pleasing jam.

Garrisson Duvivier dunks and teammate Eric Demers reacts

Geoff Gray had 21 points and 9 rebounds for Emerson

Junior Geoff Gray (Newton South) maintained the team-leading stats he came in with getting twenty-one points and pulling down nine rebounds.  The rest of the team from Boston suffered through a dismal afternoon.

Efficiency chart

Eric Demers 30

Geoff Gray 21

Garrisson Duvivier 19 (10 rebounds)

Josh Ribeiro 15 (8 points,4 assists)

Gordon 105

Emerson 50

Two Gordon freshman put up nice numbers: Parker Omslaer had six rebounds while Josh Crutchfield had six assists.

Will Lantier rejects an inside attempt by Garrisson Duvivier

Emerson fourth-year coach Bill Curley is the former Boston College star who, like Coach Murphy, had an NBA career.

The Gordon team will be getting together after Christmas for a flight to California to face Redlands (December 28) and Whittier (December 30).

The Dempsey brothers (Dave & Jason) took this one in as well as Hans Miersma.

No sign of Emerson alums Jay Leno and Sam Presti (GM at Oklahoma City) in the house.

Box from the game

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

Eric Demers

Josh Crutchfield leads a break

Garrisson Duvivier positions for a rebound battle with John Geary and Jack O’Connor

Matt Valles spins in for two

Eric Demers gets open for a pass

Jack O’Connor looks to score as Jaren Yang defends

Josh Crutchfield drives on Jared Jackson

Josh Crutchfield had six assists

Parker Omslaer collects one of his six rebounds

Steve Vampatella applies some defense

Cody Hunt (5 points)

Brett Bowman

 

 

 

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David Dempsey reaches 1000 points in tough loss by Gordon to Nichols (77-73)

David with his coaches and parents

David with his Lyman Hall coach and his Gordon coach

David with the Gordon coaching staff

*Special thanks to Nichols SID Hillary Haynes for organizing the photo shoot and sending the pictures to me.

(Dudley) Junior David Dempsey joined the 1000-point club with a season-high 28 points but it wasn’t enough as Gordon lost in its usual fashion (late and in a painful way), 77-73, to close out the regular Commonwealth Coast Conference season on Saturday afternoon.

This league loss makes ten, to go with eight wins.  Anyone who has followed this team can tell you factually that Gordon was ahead in the second half in every loss and in a position close to the end to win all of them.  Unbelievable.

But there is tomorrow, or should I say Tuesday, when we get into the do-or-die part of the schedule.  The Scots travel to Wentworth (7PM) to face the Leopards in Round One.  The other two teams in Gordon’s bracket are Roger Williams and Endicott, so a win would pit us against one of them.

(I was diagnosed with strep throat on Friday afternoon and opted to follow the game via Nichols’ live stats.  I would have loved to have gotten a picture of David getting his 1000th point.)

Gordon shot great in this one (50% on 27-for-54) and hit six-of-fifteen long ones.  But you have to offset the shooting plus with a huge minus – 26 turnovers.  Nichols collected twenty-eight points off of those wasted possessions.

The miscues came early and often as Hans Miersma, Alex Carnes, and Luke Hamilton had two each before the game was three minutes old!  Suddenly there was a Gordon timeout and I thought I heard shouting even through my computer monitor.  Next thing I knew all five starters were on the bench.

But this is the 2011-12 edition of the Gordon Fighting Scots and they can be bad but they can be very good.  And good they became in the first half.  Facing a 13-9 deficit they put together good shooting and limited miscues and ran off sixteen unanswered points to lead 25-13 with 7 ½ minutes left in the half.  The Bison were within four (33-29) at halftime.

The second half was a duplicate of the previous nine CCC losses – stay close but find a way to lose late.

Credit Nichols, as in the last-minute win at Gordon, they made shots when the game was on the line.  In this one, Ryan Sheehan (28 points) made a pair of free throws twice in the last thirteen seconds when the Scots had closed to within two points.

To me the huge missed-opportunity sequence in this one happened with Nichols ahead, 71-69, with 43 seconds left.  The Bison missed a 3-point shot (Matt Langadas) but Mike Salis got the rebound and put in a layup in the lane to give Nichols a 4-point bulge.  Gordon could never get closer than 2 points the rest of the way.  Mike Salis (the rebounded) is 5’10”.  If a Scot had secured that rebound the team would have had a chance to tie or go in front.  But it doesn’t happen and Nichols escapes with a victory on Senior Day.

Park Thomas (eighteen points and only two turnovers)

Park Thomas had eighteen points and only two turnovers as the primary ball-handler.  Unfortunately, the team’s best 3-point shooter fouled out with just under three minutes left.

Gordon (9-16/8-10) is the #7 seed in the tournament.

Nichols (12-13/10-8) is seeded 4th and faces Curry at home in Round One.  This will be the Bison’s first home playoff game since the end of the 2002-03 season. The other two teams in the bracket with Nichols are Salve Regina and Western New England.

David Dempsey’s twenty-eight points included nineteen in the second half.  He made 12-of-18 shots.  He hit for 25 points twice this season – Tufts and Endicott.  His career high?  32 points last year in Round One of the CCC tourney in the loss at Anna Maria.

This may sound like delusional thinking but I believe that next Saturday we could be celebrating Gordon’s second CCC championship in three years.  We have had highly competitive games with all seven teams in the playoffs.  If we can put three solid end games together……the needed three wins will happen.

I like the opening matchup with Wentworth.  The loss there was on a last-minute three.  The win here (80-57) was what Gordon can do when things go well.

Salve Regina is the defending champ and have a lofty 15-3 CCC record but I think that they’ll get upset this time around.

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Filed under 2011-12 Gordon College men's basketball, Nichols

Greg Walker Reaches 1000 Points During Loss to Endicott

Greg Walker hears it after reaching 1000 points.

(Wenham)  A great Bennett Center crowd saw senior Greg Walker (17 points) reach the 1000-point plateau.  That same crowd also saw Endicott (13-6) defeat Gordon (6-12), 77-62, on the same Saturday afternoon.

Best known for his moves around the basket, it was an outside shot that pushed Greg in among sixteen other Gordon scorers with 1000 points.  I saw four of those big-time scorers in the house – Brady Bajema, Mike Herr, Scott Beebe, and Jon Marstaller.

Greg gave no indication during his first season (2007-08) that he would be any sort of scorer.  He only got into 14 of 27 games and his point total for the season was 15!

I checked in with Coach Mike Schauer before the 2008-09 season and he told me that Greg was ready to contribute because he now had some excellent moves around the basket.  Those of us who have watched the Scots over the past three seasons have seen plenty of Greg’s good work around the basket.  Congrats to him.

Meanwhile, back at the game you’re probably still wondering about if you’ve read this far.

The first half was typical of most of the Gordon/Endicott games.  Plenty of revved up fans.  Endicott brought along a band!  Plenty of emotion on the floor and generally not a lot of scoring.  There were nine lead changes and no clear sense of how this one would end up.

The second half started promising for the home team – layups by Austin Bentson and Greg Walker. 

Those two baskets made it 36-32 at which point Endicott called a timeout.  Coach Phil Rowe did all the talking (loud) and finger pointing.  Let’s just say he tried to light a fire under the Gulls and the results thereafter suggest he succeeded beyond his wildest dreams.

Over the next ten minutes Endicott did almost everything right.  Their full-court pressure tightened and nine Gordon turnovers resulted.  On offense, the Gulls made everything but a three.  When those game changing ten minutes ended Endicott had produced a 27-7 run.  That’ll turn most games and it sure did this one.

Lance Greene (23 points) sparked Endicott's second half run.

Lance Greene (23 points) sparked the offense during this stretch with ten points.  The Gulls made 9-of-11 free throws.  They were great from the line throughout  –  22-of-25.

With a 59-43 cushion and eight minutes left, the cows had left the barn.  The Scots outscored Endicott, 19-18, the rest of the way but superb clock management kept Gordon from getting into any sort of position for late-game heroics .

Lance was great but another key performer was Erik Callo.  He did not play in Gordon’s, 88-74, win at Endicott in November.  Erik (6’8″) had 13 points and 11 rebounds in this game.  To say that he might have made a difference in the first game is beyond question.  He made life difficult for Greg in close.

David Dempsey and Aaron Karkow were a good matchup.  I have seen Aaron’s long-range touch in past games – he had three 3’s in this one – but never his defense.  He did a nice job on David although David did find a way to collect fourteen points.

Austin Bentson (15 points) came out red hot (ten points in the first half) and had a lot to do with Gordon being tied (32-32) at the half.  The Gordon broadcast team has no trouble handing him “Timmy (MacDonnell)” points on a regular basis.

Everyone, including the Endicott defense, was tuned into Greg closing in on 1000.  After several turnovers, missed shots, and a pat on the head from Coach Tod Murphy, Greg tallied five points in the last two minutes to get to 1000. 

The record breaker was about a 16-footer over Spencer Calling with forty seconds left in the first half.  The accomplishment was announced and the fans erupted with applause.

Gordon’s next game is on Wednesday night at Regis in Weston MA.  The game is scheduled for 7:30PM.

An alumni game played earlier in the day brought back a number of familiar faces.

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Filed under 2010-11 Gordon College men's basketball, Endicott, Gordon men's basketball 2010-11

Bad Second Half Start Does In Scots Against Anna Maria

Zone buster Chris Pinsonault put up thirty points on Gordon.

(Wenham) A brutal start in the second half undid a nice first half and sent the Scots to their second Commonwealth Coast Conference loss, 75-61, to Anna Maria on Tuesday night at the student-less Bennett Center.

Gordon (4-9) led by eight points (25-17) after thirteen minutes of play and were in front, 30-28, at halftime.  Anna Maria (8-6) was content to launch from long range against Gordon’s zone defense and were missing (4-for-18).  You had to like the Scots’ chances as a result.

I don’t know what went on at halftime but Anna Maria came out and shredded the Scot zone for four minutes.  They found openings on the inside and outside while the Scots returned to their turnover-prone ways. Gordon coach Tod Murphy went through three timeouts and a good part of his yelling voice trying to stop the bleeding.  It didn’t stop until the Amcats had a 15-2 run put together and were up, 43-32.  Gordon couldn’t get inside a ten-point deficit the rest of the way.

Chris Pinsonault (5’11” senior) dropped thirty points on Gordon including a remarkable twenty-one points in the second half.  He was a zone-playing team’s worst nightmare. 

Those outcome-deciding, second-half four minutes featured five turnovers.  Gordon had only six turnovers in the entire first half.  Surprising to me was that Anna Maria was in a zone defense when most of the giveaways occurred. 

Greg Walker is shown here covering Brad Peterson. Greg matched his season high with 26 points.

Lost in the loss was a 26-point game by Greg Walker.  The 6-7 senior made eight of nine shots in a sixteen point second half.

The problem was that while Greg could score, the Scots couldn’t get consecutive stops on defense, whether using a zone or a man-to-man, to narrow their deficit. 

Gordon resorted to the “hack attack” in the last 1 ½ minutes but the Amcats made eight free throws in a row to thwart that strategy.

Park Thomas defends Junior De La Hoz.

Junior De La Hoz was another zone buster for the team from Paxton (MA).  The 5-7 senior dropped in four treys for sixteen points.  He was the team’s primary ball handler and had just two turnovers.

The Gordon zone somewhat protected them from Anthony Click.  The 6-4 sophomore (15.6 ppg) was held to ten points.  His one-on-one moves were lessened by the Scot defense.  Chris and Junior, however,  more than made up for Anthony’s point shortage.

Anna Maria hadn’t defeated Gordon since the CCC playoffs in 2003.  The Scots took a 20-5 team into the first round game and were upset by the Amcats in Paxton.  “Unhappy,” doesn’t do justice to Coach Mike Schauer’s reaction to that tournament-exiting loss.

David Dempsey registered his third double/double of the season.  He is 7th in the conference in rebounds and 6th in scoring.

The Scots will face long-time rival Eastern Nazarene at the Bennett Center on Saturday afternoon. 

Gordon has dropped three of their last four games and have yet to win a conference game in two tries.  No one questions the effort.  I do question the lack of a 3rd scorer.  Someone has to step up and provide consistent double-digit points. 

It didn’t feel right sitting on the student side of the gym.  It seemed to make the unbearably loud pregame music even louder than usual.  Is there any reason why that music isn’t played during the game?  Why limit the “enjoyment” for whoever it is that enjoys it?

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Filed under Anna Maria, ENC, Gordon men's basketball 2010-11