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Post  chicagokid43 on Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:51 pm

Just to upstate some of the locals about this past weekends events. The Granite State Jayhawks arrived in Springfield Mass for the Hall Of Fame National Invitational. Over the next two days they would play five games and win all five. None closer than 9 points despite playing without Connor Green who was nursing a bad wrist from a fall at Brandeis Camp on Saturday. Balance was the key with 4 different high scorers and 7 guys getting into double figures. In the final game of the weekend the team would play a Ct Knights team that had been on a tear also and although it was close for 28 minutes the Jayhawks got big shot after big shot to hold off the talented group from Ct. 5-0 in a tourney such as this is quite a event with teams from all over the east coast you would have to say that this was as big a story as there was in this tourney.
The third day of the long weekend would begin with a long wait as the team from NYC arrived late and had to play a game and then play the Jayhawks so the game that was to go off at 6:10 did not start until after 8. Despite being exhausted from the previous 5 games in two days the boys were able to carry a lead late in the game before the team from NYC had enough and walked off the floor. So stunned,tired and hungry the boys immediately warmed up and faced a team from Vermont. Quickly hitting shots and running the floor this game was in control from the jump and the Jayhawks cruised to a 20 point win.
By the end of the weekend, 4 different guys would lead the team in scoring, the entire team would have at least one game in double figures and a final record of 7 wins and no losses. Now if you talk to some in the area they write this off because the boys are without a D1 player and run plays and play a match up zone defense most of the time and blah blah blah. I think it is a credit to these boys hard work and chemistry as well as their unselfishness that allows them to succeed. I wish some of the other basketball fans in the area could respect as much as I do.

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Post  EBlessNHSP on Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:59 am

From the Jayhawks website:

When people talk about New England basketball, usually the names that jump off the page are the New England Playaz, BABC, Expressions, Mass Rivals, Connecticut Basketball Club, Metro Boston, and others. In the summer of 2010, you can add two teams to that list: Granite State Jayhawks and the Connecticut Knights.

The Jayhawks took home the American Division title in the 17u division and were crowned as co-champions in the 4th annual Hall of Fame National Invitational at the Mass Mutual Center. Because you can only play three games in a day during the NCAA evaluation period, per NCAA rules, Granite State wasn't able to square off with the National-side champion, Grassroots Canada, who upended Expressions.

Having three New England teams in the final four was pretty impressive, considering teams came in from Los Angeles, Omaha, Toronto, Montreal, Philadelphia, Scanton, Albany, New York City, New Jersey, Delaware, Washington DC and many other places outside of New England. The tournament, which began with the First Eight on Saturday, concluded with just under 120 total colleges and over 150 college coaches in attendance. Among those 120 schools, coaches from Duke, Kansas, UConn, Syracuse, Georgetown, Florida, Pittsburgh, Villanova, Boston College, Rutgers, Wake Forest, California, and many others took in the action.

Along the way in catching the title, Granite State went 2-0 in pool play, beating Connecticut Select and the Central Jersey Hawks. After pool play, they took out the Connecticut Gold in the 1st round, Keystone Blazers from Pa. in the 2nd round and then the Connecticut Knights to grab the chip. Mike O'laughlin was big in the championship game finishing with 24 points. Sean McClung was also huge for Granite State connecting on two long-range bombs to keep the Knights out of reach late in the game. Steve Spirou also put together an impressive weekend.

The Knights also put together an impressive weekend winning one side of the First 8 tournament by beating Expressions in the 1st round, Maine Nation in the semi-finals, and the Albany City Rocks in the championship. Following the 1st 8, the CT Knights beat Lone Wolf from Vt and Brookwood Elite from Canada in pool play. Next up was BTI/Pump and Run from California and East Coast Elite out of Delaware before falling to Granite State. They were led throughout the weekend by the bulldog point guard, Ty Smith Jr. (26 vs. Brookwood and 28 vs Lone Wolf) and scoring guard Mike Anderson, who finished with 35 points in the chip.

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