Tag Archives: Roy Ray

Gordon College Graduation – 2014

Packed house at the Bennett Center for the 2014 graduation

Packed house at the Bennett Center for the 2014 graduation

Carolyn Cassidy and Julie McClelland - two of the biggest GC basketball fans

Carolyn Cassidy and Julie McClelland – two of the biggest GC basketball fans

(Wenham MA)  I took in the 124th Gordon College commencement on a Saturday where there was rain when it started and bright sunshine when it was over.

This was the first rainy one I’ve been at.  That rain pushed the activities to indoors at the Bennett Center.  Logistical nightmare, no doubt!

My goal at the commencement was to get a final picture of the  seniors – Roy Ray, Shaun Roach, Alex Carnes, Luke Hamilton, and Park Thomas all members of this season’s CCC championship team.  I did get that done.  I also like to get pictures of their families too.  Didn’t do so well there………way too congested afterwards.

President Michael Lindsay

President Michael Lindsay

I loved the crowd and couldn’t help but wish that maybe next February the Fighting Scots could play the CCC championship game in front of many of them.

I also noticed that the 2013-14 championship banner isn’t in the Bennett Center rafters yet.

One of the memorable moments of this graduation was a medical emergency that happened when President Michael Lindsay was speaking.  The emergency staff was quick and efficient.  Later family members came back informing that the lady involved was okay.  I was pleased that President Lindsay did the role-model thing by taking the situation to God in prayer.  I can tell you, he wasn’t the only one in the crowd doing it!

I wish the players and their families well in the days ahead.  It has been a pleasure connecting with all of you.

Alex Carnes

Alex Carnes

Val Gin..........always serious!

Val Gin……….always serious!

Roy Ray and Shaun Roach

Roy Ray and Shaun Roach

The Rays

The Rays

Park Thomas

Park Thomas

Luke Hamilton

Luke Hamilton

Kevin and Linda Roach

Kevin and Linda Roach

Drew Hall - my dorm my freshman year (1959)

Drew Hall – my dorm my freshman year (1959)

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Gordon rolls past UNE 84-59 for fourth straight

Richie Armand breaks ahead against UNE

Richie Armand breaks ahead against UNE

Luke Hamilton (12 points) had four long ones in the first half

Luke Hamilton (12 points) had four long ones in the first half

(Wenham MA) It worked last year.  Why not try it again?

A year ago (January 8th) the underdog University of New England played at the Bennett Center and upset Gordon, 59-50.   What did it for the Nor’Easters that night was a zone defense and a very, very patient offense.

For the first 7 1/2 minutes it was same-old, same-old.  UNE had a 19-13 lead hitting four late-in-the-shot-clock three’s.

But this time around, the rest of the game was all Gordon as they rolled away from UNE, 84-59, on Wednesday night before an active crowd of students in a Commonwealth Coast Conference contest.

Two good ways to wreck a zone defense are quick passes and good outside shooting.  The Scots (7-6 overall/5-2 in CCC) were outstanding at both as the game progressed.

Their offense in the second half was amazing.  They made 18-of-25 shots (72%!) and had thirteen assists in that half.  UNE never gave up on the zone defense despite the good looks Gordon turned up.  The score reached 65-45 with 7+ minutes left and the reserves from both sides saw significant minutes.

Gordon had eight 3’s in the first half (Luke Hamilton-4, Alex Carnes-3) as quick passes set up great looks.

Park Thomas drains a last-second three to end the half

Park Thomas drains a last-second three to end the half

UNE should have guessed that it might not be their day when Luke tried a late-in-the-half three.  His shot missed but the rebound caromed directly to Park Thomas in the right-hand corner.  Park’s successful three was in the air as the halftime horn sounded.

The Scots ended with eleven 3’s.  I had to go back to a January 2010 game with Curry to find an equal to that stat.

Gordon has now won four straight and only Nichols has won more games in the conference.  A common stat in the four wins is that the Scots have had more assists than turnovers.  The difference in this one was 23-20.  A bit misleading, however, because seven of the miscues happened after Gordon had built up the 20-point lead and a heavy dose of reserves were involved.

Hans Miersma dunks

Hans Miersma dunks

That good passing I mentioned not only opened up the outside but also gave Hans Miersma (17 points) some juicy opportunities in close.  Hans made seven of eight shots.  This was the 6-9 junior’s seven straight game in double figures.

Alex Carnes finished with fourteen points, six rebounds, and three assists.

Park Thomas had an eight-assist game.

UNE (1-13 overall/1-6 in the CCC) was led in scoring by Justin Pollard.  Justin tallied thirteen points but it took him thirteen shots to get there.

The Nor’Easters have now lost seven straight.  Their only win was against Western New England on December 7th.

Neither Josh Butler nor Devin Thompson played in this one.  Devin was injured in practice a while ago and has missed four games.  He was their top scorer.  Josh had sixteen points and fifteen rebounds in UNE’s upset win at the Bennett Center last year.

Gordon travels to Quincy on Saturday to face Eastern Nazarene.  Records don’t usually mean much in this rivalry.  ENC is 10-3 overall.

Roy Ray nails a three

Roy Ray nails a three

Roy Ray hit a crowd-pleasing three late in the game.

Efficiency Stat
Hans Miersma 25
Alex Carnes 21
Luke Hamilton 18
Park Thomas 16

Gordon 108
UNE 47

Box

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

Justin Pollard gets two

Justin Pollard gets two

tough UNE defense

tough UNE defense

Alex Carnes (14 points) floats in the lane

Alex Carnes (14 points) floats in the lane

Craig McFarlane

Craig McFarlane

Udoka Obiora

Udoka Obiora

Sam Johnson

Sam Johnson

Hans Miersma and Shaun Roach battle for a rebound

Hans Miersma and Shaun Roach battle for a rebound

action in close

action in close

good Bennett Center crowd

good Bennett Center crowd

Hans Miersma set to block Kurt Steiner

Hans Miersma set to block Kurt Steiner

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Gordon Routs Undermanned Curry

Roy Ray (#21) drives by Mike McCarthy in late-game action at Curry.

Luke Perkins (left) and Jordan Kelly (right) were part of a Gordon defense that held Curry to twelve second half points.

(Milton)  Playing with one hand tied behind your back is difficult.  Playing with both hands back there will surely lead to bad results.

That’s the way it was for Curry Saturday afternoon as they faced Gordon in Commonwealth Coast Conference action at home.  Minus their two best players (Jarrell Jackson and Sedale Jones) the Colonels lacked the firepower to compete for a full game and were mauled, 80-42.

To get a sense of these two missing players, understand that Jarrell was a first-team CCC All-Star last year and this year carries a 16.5 ppg average.  Sedale leads the CCC in scoring with 20.3 points per game.  Maybe a better comparison would be imagining Gordon playing without Greg Walker and David Dempsey.

Despite being shorthanded, Curry (4-13) played a competitive first half riding the shooting of Michael Connery (12 points) and a last-second basket by Axel Allen.  They only trailed 37-30 at halftime.

However, Gordon (6-10) was rolling on offense (54% in the first half).  That good shooting got even better in the second half (66%) while Curry went into a drought of droughts.

2 ½ minutes into the second half the score was 38-32.  The worrier in me was showing signs of life.  Over the next eleven minutes, however, the Scots went on a 31-2 run, that’s right, 31-2, and soared ahead 69-34 with 6 ½ minutes to go.  Wow!

We saw long range accuracy (Luke Hamilton & Park Thomas).  We saw inside accuracy (Greg Walker, Caleb Perkins, Jon Himottu).  We even saw a Rajon Rondo floater (Park Thomas).  It was all good and there was plenty of it. Nice not to be on the other side of such great offense.

Gordon’s iffy outside game kicked in versus Curry with 8-of-18 from long range.  Luke had 15 points from the perimeter.  This was the freshman’s 4th time reaching double figures.

Greg Walker (17 points) tries for a layup against soaring Chris Brown (#34).

Greg Walker (17 points) had the first nine points for the Scots in that put-away run in the second half.  By my figures, he’s within sixteen points of reaching a scoring milestone.

The Scots’ defense was impressive.  Every game they’ve gotten better at playing a zone defense.  The shifting is quick and most of the time the best shot for the opponent is a long-range, low percentage one.  There has also been enough mixing in of man-to-man defense to keep the opposition guessing.

Biggest surprise, other than Jarrell and Sedale not playing, was that Curry never pressed.  Maybe the fact that Curry played at Colby-Sawyer on Wednesday and at Amherst on Thursday had something to do with it.

Shaun Roach had plenty of family fans in attendance. He had three steals in this one.

Jordan Kelly was back in action.  He had seven rebounds.

Caleb Perkins tallied eight points and had me wondering why he shot two free throws left-handed. 

Matt Gibson handles the ball against Curry.

I did not realize that Curry had a new gymnasium.  So, naturally, I visited the old one.  The new one is gorgeous – lighting, seating, all good. 

Next opponent for Gordon (2-3 in the CCC) will be New England College.  The game is in Henniker (NH) on Thursday night at 7:30PM.  The Pilgrims defeated Roger Williams today.

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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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