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D1 Boys' Prelims

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D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:11 am

Give your thoughts on last night's results. The NHN will have some of my thoughts later, but I want to hear from Forum Members if they were at games last night or heard anything about games.

Here's some material from the UL:

High School Basketball: Memorial earns dramatic comeback win

During his long tenure as a basketball coach at Manchester Memorial dating back to when Mike Flanagan played in the early 70’s, Jack Quirk said he couldn’t remember the last time the Crusaders rallied from a 20-point third-period deficit to win.

“This is one of the most satisfying wins I’ve ever had,” said Quirk after No. 9 Memorial posted a 75-72 NHIAA Division I boys’ basketball prelim win over No. 8 Nashua South Wednesday in the Gate City.

Behind Michael Roumraj, Paul Rodolf, Jake Santiago, Zach Lubin, Manny Alisandro and Jake Carrier, the Crusaders responded to Quirk’s comments during a time-out in the third period.

Nashua South led 41-26 at halftime and Memorial’s win spoiled a potential North-South quarterfinal match-up. Instead Memorial returns to Nashua to face No. 1 ranked North at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Merrimack 42, Bishop Guertin 26: In Merrimack, the fifth-seeded Tomahawks played tough defense, dictated tempo and advanced to play upset winner Spaulding of Rochester in a quarterfinal on Saturday night at home. No. 13 Spaulding pulled the upset of the night, taking down No. 4 Exeter on Wednesdaynight.

Ian Cummings led Merrimack with 13 points. Zak Kerr added 12. No player reached double figures for 12-seeded BG, which was held to single digits in each quarter (two in the third).

Nashua North 57, Alvirne 43: In Nashua, the top seeds built a 33-21 halftime lead and controlled the game from there. Ronnie Silva led the Titans’ attack with 18 points and teammate Nate Hale added 15. Danny Brown and Max Bonney-Liles led No. 16 Alvirne with nine points apiece.



MANCHESTER — His 19 points aside, Evan MacDonald’s biggest contribution turned out to be an offensive rebound that led to two clutch free throws in the final eight seconds.

“Huge play, because we knew this was going to turn into a one or two possession game,” said Manchester Central coach Dave “Doc” Wheeler following his team’s 69-66 decision against upset-minded Keene at the Simon Gym on Wednesday.

Keene, the 14th-seeded team, trailed 67-63 before Keene’s Logan Galanes buried a 3-point shot with 16 seconds left. Keene nearly stole the inbounds pass and had to foul Central junior guard David Baraka who had a one-and-one free throw opportunity with Central clinging to a one-point lead.

“I made eye contact with coach (Tom) Dickson, who told me to get the rebound and that’s what I did,” said MacDonald, who used his 6-foot-3 height to corral the rebound off the missed free throw between two Keene players in the paint. MacDonald was fouled and made his two free throws to give Central its three-point lead.

Keene nearly sent the game into overtime when Jake Blaisdell, who had 14 points, had a wide open 3-point attempt in front of his team’s bench. But the shot hit the back iron and No. 3 Central, which was ousted in the first round as the No. 2 seed last year to Nashua North, escaped with the victory.

During the regular season Central defeated the Blackbirds by two points in Keene.

“We needed three 3-point shots in the final 1:16 to beat Keene during the regular season,” said Wheeler. “This turned out to be a carbon-copy of that game.”

Central connected on ten 3-point shots Wednesday, five coming from MacDonald and two clutch ones in succession by Jon Makori, who netted 19 points. Central trailed Keene 63-59 before Makori knocked down his trifectas with 2:40 left, giving Central the lead for good, 65-63.

“Jon’s a shooter and tonight he hit two big ones in the clutch,” said Wheeler. “Keene executed its offense when we had trouble making stops, but Jon gave us a spark,” said Wheeler.

Keene trailed 42-30 at halftime, but rallied back behind Galanes (22 points), Blaisdell (14), Brad Blake (14) and Spencer Feng with 12 points. Erick Zecha dished out six assists and had five steals. Jaylen LeRoy had 13 points for Central, which will host Bedford Saturday at 7 p.m. in the quarterfinals.


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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:12 am

From the UL:

HAMPTON – Londonderry showed its resilience Wednesday night, nearly erasing a 13-point deficit, but could not keep pace with Winnacunnet of Hamptom in a 58-47 loss in the opening round of the NHIAA Division I Boys’ Basketball Tournament.

The loss comes after the Lancers defeated the Warriors, 51-49, on Jan. 29 in Londonderry. Winnacunnet now moves on to face Pinkerton on March 12 in the tournament quarterfinals.

“Kudos to them,” Londonderry head coach Nate Stanton said about Winnacunnet. “They were very unselfish tonight, especially compared to the first time we played them. They moved the ball well and they made the shots, and that’s what it takes.”

Londonderry came out reeling in the first quarter, falling into a 14-1 hole just eight minutes into the game. However, Londonderry fired back in the second frame and dwindled the lead to as little as four in the closing minutes of the third.

Matt Corey and Jake Coleman were key cogs in the comeback. Corey led the Lancers in scoring with 13 points while Coleman added 12 in the loss.

After Londonderry made the score 38-34, Winnacunnet took control once again. Warriors guard Zach Waterhouse capped a 13-2 Winnacunnet run with back-to-back-threes to pull his team ahead, 51-36. Waterhouse finished the night with a team-high 19 points.

That late surge proved to be too much for the Lancers to overcome.

“I don’t think any other team could have come back like that,” Coleman said. “I thought we came out a little shocked in the first quarter and then we stopped playing tentative and started attacking them. But we obviously have to get the job done in the end.”

Following the loss, Stanton praised his team for the way it responded after its slow start.

“I really like how we settled down and fought back,” Stanton said. “We were only down five at halftime and had a couple chances to tie it and make it a one-possession game. We missed a few foul shots and some layups.”

The Warriors got a lift from guard Liam Viviano, who scored 13 points while facilitating Winnacunnet offense.

Michael Lewis also had a strong game with 11 points.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:13 am

From the UL:

BEDFORD — Sixth-seeded Bedford zoned out No. 11 Salem, 59-36 in a first-round Division I boys’ tournament game played before a near-capacity enthusiastic crowd.

Defensively, the Bulldogs (13-6) employed a zone defense for just the second time this season. Resembling an impermeable oil slick, the oppressive zone sucked offensive opportunity from Salem (9-10), which managed just single digit efforts in each of the first three quarters.

On offense, Bedford remained patient and composed playing against an aggressive and sticky man-to-man defense. Surrounded by pickpockets — who were anything but shy about their intentions — Bedford zoned out the pressure searching for the open man. Five Bulldogs tallied at least nine points before the substitutes took the court midway through the final quarter.

With student cheering sections alternating chants — Salem filled two rooter buses for the road trip — the lead switched sides often in the early going until Bedford broke things open with a 12-2 run halfway through the first quarter.

Midway through this surge, Salem’s 6-foot-5 stud, Matt Vartanian, committed his second foul, which Bedford center Colby Gendron converted into a 3-point play by twisting home a reverse bank shot while falling out of bounds. He then swished the free throw.

“Are you kidding me? That was a huge play,” said Bedford coach Mark Elmendorf. Vartanian, who averaged nearly 15 points a game, went to the bench for the rest of the half, and finished the night with eight points and three rebounds.

“I call it my scoop special,” said Gendron, a 6-foot-7 junior who scored nine points (two were thundering dunks) and grabbed seven rebounds. “Every day at practice during free throws I work on taking weird one-handed shots.”

“We didn’t start the way we wanted to,” said Salem coach Rob McLaughlin. “Our defense usually gets us going, but that didn’t happen. We had some open looks early and then Bedford started scoring in bunches.

Point guard Justin Hayes banged two treys during Bedford’s run and tallied 10 of his 12 points in the first quarter. Sharpshooter Ryan Hughes (15 points) hit two corner treys in the second quarter, helping the home team to a 34-15 lead at intermission.

Joshua Bauer added 10 points while Brayden Moreno contributed nine points for Bedford. Liam Greene led Salem with 10 points and eight rebounds.

Both teams entered the tourney having won five of its last six games. At one point Salem owned a 3-7 record. McLaughlin credited his seniors with stepping up to stave off adversity.

“They’re a good team. But we had a really good start. We knew they had a lot of strengths. We were in our house and we wanted to protect it,” said Bedford’s Joshua Koehler who grabbed 10 rebounds.

Bedford advances to the quarterfinal and travels to third-seeded Manchester Central (15-4) Saturday night.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  RedRaiderNation on Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:42 am

From Seacoast Online:

EXETER — From the first shot of the game, Cal Connelly and the rest of the 13th-seeded Spaulding High School boys basketball team were in control.
Host Exeter threatened a few times but never led in Wednesday’s NHIAA Division I preliminary playoff game.
With Connelly getting a game-high 27 points from multiple spots on the floor and freshman Arie Breakfield coming through with perhaps the five most timely points of the night in the fourth quarter, Spaulding (7-12) never trailed and beat No. 4 Exeter, 67-56.
“We dug in on the defensive end down the stretch and were able to get stops and we pulled it off,” Connelly said. “We just went out here to have fun. We’re a 13th seed with nothing to lose so we’re going forward in the playoffs still with nothing to lose.”
Spaulding will now travel to No. 5 Merrimack (13-6) for Saturday’s 7 p.m. quarterfinal. Merrimack beat No. 12 Bishop Guertin, 42-26.
Exeter concludes its season with a 13-6 record and an unfulfilled feeling. The Blue Hawks had lived on its ability to shoot with any team in the state.
“We didn’t have a great shooting night but we’ve had a great year,” Exeter Coach Jeff Holmes said. “It’s disappointing. We wanted to play two home (playoff) games. We earned the right to play two home games but we didn’t get the win tonight to get that experience.”
Credit Spaulding for its game-long shot-making and its tough defense.
Spaulding stuck tight to Exeter guards Bryant Holmes (15 points) and Cody Morissette (8 points) all night. They did not allow uncontested shots and also did a good job converging when either player got into the painted area, deflecting several passes.
Exeter made 19-of-55 shots overall and just 4 of 19 on 3-point attempts. Spaulding was 9 of 21 from behind the arc.
Trailing 18-7 after one quarter, Spaulding stretched its lead to as much as 17 points at 29-12 when Connelly hit a left-wing shot from about 28 feet and then mimed shooting an imaginary arrow to the ceiling.
Exeter tried several different players and approaches to guarding Connelly, who scored 28 in the Blue Hawks’ 69-58 win on Feb. 29. None worked as the 6-foot-4 junior scored at least five points and made a 3-pointer in every quarter.
“Cal Connelly gets my vote for Player of the Year,” Exeter senior Tim Larkin said. “He’s their whole team and we couldn’t stop him. He single-handedly beat us.”
While Connelly did have a huge game, Spaulding also received plenty of team support.
Breakfield scored just two points in the regular-season loss. He had 14 in the playoff victory.
With just over three minutes to play, Holmes made a pull-up jumper from the right elbow to cut the lead to 52-47.
“I thought we clawed back. It was a five-point game and Bryant had a 3-pointer from the top of the key that went in and out,” Jeff Holmes said. “That would have knocked it to two.
After Exeter had failed to convert to get closer, Breakfield was left alone in the left corner. He converted the 3-pointer.
“The plan was, if you have an open shot, you take it,” Breakfield said. “We want to move the ball around and we want to take more shots.”
Then Breakfield blocked a Morissette shot at the other end, and followed that up with a reverse layup. With two minutes left, Spaulding was back in front by 10, 57-47.
Exeter didn’t get closer than nine the rest of the way.
“Arie Breakfield, he had that one stretch, he led us,” Spaulding Coach Tim Cronin said. “A freshman to step up in a moment like this — I can’t tell you how important that is.”
Spaulding freshman guard Keagan Calero was given the unenviable task of playing Bryant Holmes, a high-scoring senior guard with a bulldog’s tenaciousness.
Holmes didn’t score in either the first or third quarters and also committed at least two “frustration” fouls which meant he had to play the whole fourth quarter judiciously.
“It was my main priority,” said Calero, who chipped in six points. “I’ve been practicing it all week. I had to do my job. We knew defense was going to win us this game.”
For Spaulding, Matt Roy added 10 points with Griffin Towle scoring six.
Exeter received double-figure efforts from Nik Ramsdell and Stephen Natola, who each scored 11

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  OntheBlock on Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:46 pm

Union Leader article on the Pinkerton vs Trinity game was chock full of mistakes. Poor job by Chris Duffy the "Chief Sports Editor". Has two paragraphs about Brennan Morris being out with a concussion. Then a paragraph that says he had a monster dunk and 14 boards. Hey Chris - that was Olson not Morris. Please review your writing prior to publishing.

Eagle Tribune had a great article....
http://www.eagletribune.com/sports/national_sports/filling-the-void/article_8d0b255f-22e4-5d64-b059-3e379eea5ed1.html

What I saw in the game was that Romick, Rizzo, and Olson showed that they could each carry this team if needed.

In the first quarter, Romick carried much of the offensive load. Spin moves in the paint. 15 footers. And a couple of threes. plus swarming defense causing turnovers, and generally forcing Trinity to play with more urgency than they could handle.

In the second quarter with Olson in foul trouble, Matt Rizzo took over. He threw in 11 points in a span of 2:11, and took the game over. Rizzo has been solid all season. He's been a team player, and has deferred to his teammates during alot of games ths season. But, this effort showed that when needed, he can single handedly take a game over.

Then the second half, or more accurately in the 4th quarter belonged to Olson. He wreaked havoc on the Trinity frontline. Outrebounding 2 or 3 defenders several times for offensive putbacks. He also came up with 3 big steals in the half by playing centerfield as Trinity tried long passes to break the 3/4 court Astro press.

A rotation of Guilmette, Anzivino, and Freshman Joey Merrill covered the majority of the other two spots on the floor, and each played really well.

You don't get a full appreciation for the Astro's size until you walk on the floor between them after the game. Rizzo 6'3" is bigger than most of the frontline players in the state. Then Romick 6'4", Morris 6'5", and Olson at 6'7" has to be intimidating to other teams. Their bench boasts Trystan Brown 6'6", Ryan Phillibotte 6'6", and Riley Hogel 6'5" (listed at 6'4", but looks to me like he's grown more.

What's crazier is their speed. With that size, you'd expect big and slow. Not the case here. Rizzo is sneaky quick. Romick hits a spot before you know he was there. Morris can beat almost any guard in the state off the dribble. And, Olson covers the entire paint in a flash. Wide open layup....nope BLOCKED by Olson....where'd he come from?

The Astros are a scary team. I can't imagine a single match up where they are not the head to head favorites going into the game. They may have coasted during some games this season, but this is the playoffs, and, at least in this first game they were super intense.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  CoachP on Fri Mar 11, 2016 12:42 am

On the block: I would agree with about 50% of the above Bill, as a Pinkerton parent you are not very objective. Pinkerton a good team, played a 15th seed team. It is easy to hype a team/players against lesser competition.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  OntheBlock on Fri Mar 11, 2016 11:38 am

Talk about being negative... Support the boys. With or without your son.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  CoachP on Fri Mar 11, 2016 11:52 am

On the Block: A bit confused by your comment. My son graduated last year and my youngest will be entering Trinity in September.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Fri Mar 11, 2016 11:53 am

Okay boys it's time to behave

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  CoachP on Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:16 pm

I grew up in the Manchester area, relocated down South after college. Moving back here four years ago. The past three years I spent as varsity basketball parent, I found the thoughts and comments on this site very interesting and as a newcomer to the NH basketball community it gave me good insight and history to other teams in Division I. As a parent I would read this forum and other sites but chose not to get involved or comment. I didn’t want to be “that parent”. This year I moved into a local coaching role and before my youngest two move up into the high school ranks have become more involved. I think these sites/forums can be useful/entertaining, but they tend to get away from their purpose when they lose objectively and when it becomes parents touting their sons/daughters programs. I have to say NH basketball is a very different atmosphere from down South…..

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  NH12345 on Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:24 pm

With all due respect CoachP. . . Pinkerton played a very talented team in Trinity regardless of their seed.  I think everyone that followed D1 this year would agree that there are no easy games in this tournament.  For anyone to beat any of the teams in the tournament this year by 24 shows an impressive effort.

Just my thoughts. . .


Last edited by NH12345 on Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:35 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : SORRY T&F)

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:29 pm

Last warning. This is the Sports Forum, not the Parenting Council. If I need to edit, I will.

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Re: D1 Boys' Prelims

Post  CoachP on Fri Mar 11, 2016 2:01 pm

It wasn’t knocking Trinity nor its players. My son played with and is still friends with most of the current team. I am an alum, I have one child that graduated and two more to go. My issue is parents not being objective on this forum and trying to use this and other sites to hype their own programs/kids. I did not think that was the intention of this site.

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