By JAMES GENSTERBLUM / Daily News Correspondent
Sullivan lights up Cougars
Hillsdale Academy forward Peter Sullivan hadn’t seen game action for nearly three weeks due to an injured back, but he made up for lost time quickly against the Will Carleton Cougars in Pat Paterson Classic first round action on Monday.
The junior put up an eye-popping stat-line in his return to action, 36 points, 23 rebounds, and six steals, to lead his team past the Cougars and into the Al Williams pool championship game with a 76-51 win.
Sullivan also tied Rob Salisbury’s tournament record of 16 field goals in a game, and was one shy of tying Bruce Daniels’ rebound record of 24.
“It’s good to have Peter back,” said Academy coach Rick Milligan. “Having him out forced other guys to step up and that will help us a lot down the road, but Peter is a great player and opens things up for his teammates when he’s on the court.”
The Academy, which netted its first win of the season by beating the Cougars, wasn’t carried solely by Sullivan. Freshman guard Chip Blood also poured in 21 points to help the Colts secure the victory, and Sawyer Moss added nine.
“Our execution offensively has gotten a lot better over the last few games, and I think our players are starting to get better at their roles in the offense,” Milligan said. “I’m very encouraged going forward.”
Will Carleton fought valiantly to stay in the game, led by senior Jake Wheeler’s double-double performance down low, but were undone by a 15-5 Academy run to start the second half.
Ricky Davis had 11 points for the Cougars and Joel Wheeler added nine.
The Colts will advance to play Jonesville at 8:15 in the Al Williams Pool Championship, while Will Carleton will meet North Adams-Jerome in the consolation game at 6:30.
Comets ‘D’ is the key
The Jonesville Comets have ridden a fast-paced, aggressive defense to an undefeated start this season, and Monday’s first round game in the Pat Paterson Classic showed how dangerous that defense can be.
The Comets suffocated the North Adams-Jerome Rams defensively, holding the Rams offense to just 21 points in a dominant 46-21 win to advance to the Al Williams Pool Championship on Tuesday.
“Our identity this year as a team lies primarily in our defense,” said Jonesville coach Dustin Scharer. “It’s what we spend the most time on in practice and what we rely on to win games, and it’s worked for us so far.”
The Comets utilized both half-court and full-court pressure in stymieing the Rams, holding them under eight points in every quarter of the game and forcing numerous turnovers. Guard Spencer Nielsen led the way defensively for Jonesville with six steals and six rebounds.
Guard Mitchell Miller had 13 points for the Comets and guard Bryan Black had eight in the game.
Sophomore Brad VanCamp led the way for the Rams with six points, while senior Dakota George had four.
Jonesville will face Hillsdale Academy in the Al Williams Pool Championship game on their home court, at 8:15, while the Rams will play Will Carleton Academy in the Consolation game at 6:30.
Colts run past Cougars
Forcing numerous turnovers defensively and getting balanced offensive scoring, the Hillsdale Academy Colts easily beat the Will Carleton Cougars 54-21 in the first round of the inaugural Pat Paterson Classic Girls’ Basketball tournament on Monday.
The Colts started uncharacteristically slow, taking several possessions to record their first basket, but quickly raced out to a 19-3 lead over the Cougars anyways, and controlled the game from there.
Defensively the Colts forced numerous turnovers against the Cougars, who struggled to bring up the ball offensively against the Academy’s trademark full court press.
“We were a little flat at the start, after a long layoff, and we didn’t have quite the same energy in this game that we’ve had in others,” said Hillsdale coach Jeff Hubbard. “However, we still executed very well in most of the facets of the game. This was a very good game for us to shake off the rust heading into the championship game against Jonesville.”
Balance was the name of the game for the Colts’ offense, as all but one player recorded points yet again for the Colts. Forward Heather Lantis led the way with 11, while freshman Hannah Smith and senior Laura Wonders added eight apiece.
“We’ve had at least ten girls score for us in every game this year, and that’s a great statistic,” Hubbard said. “Our balance will hopefully keep teams from being able to key on one of our players and continue to open up opportunities for everyone on our team.”
Cougars guard Jamie Davis was stellar in spite of her team’s defeat, scoring 17 of their 21 points to lead the way for Will Carleton.
With the win the Academy advances to face Jonesville in the inaugural Al Williams Bracket Championship game at 4:45, while Will Carleton will meet North Adams-Jerome in the Consolation game at 3:00.
Balanced attack leads Jonesville
The Jonesville Comets put forward a stellar performance in all facets of the game on Monday, crushing an overmatched North Adams-Jerome Rams team 61-13 to advance to the first ever Pat Paterson Girls’ Basketball Classic Championship game.
Jonesville jumped on the Rams quickly, opening the game on an 18-2 run, and never looked back, dominating the Rams offensively and defensively for the rest of the game.
“We really had a solid performance by all of our players today, and a great team effort,” said Jonesville coach Tom Dunn. “There’s nothing better as a coach than to watch a game where your team is playing well and getting important contributions from every player, and we had that this afternoon.”
Although senior Ashlende Teller was the star for the Comets, scoring 16 points, she had plenty of help from her teammates offensively, as every Jonesville player scored, and six besides Teller scored multiple baskets, led by Allison Varney’s 14 point performance.
Defensively the Comets were just as effective, limiting the Rams to just five first half points and maintaining their pressure throughout the entire game.
Guard Kristen Trudell was NA-J’s leading scorer with four points, while Shannen Kittle added three.
The Comets advance to meet undefeated Hillsdale Academy in the Al Williams Pool Championship game at 4:45, while NA-J will play Will Carleton Academy at 3:00.