Tag: Tim Swenson

Mass. College Hoops: Babson Wins NEWMAC Title, Tops Springfield, 72-62

By NoontimeSports.com 

The Babson College men’s basketball team captured their first New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) title this afternoon, defeating Springfield College in Babson Park by a score of 72-62. Sophomore Joey Flannery led the Beavers, pouring in a game-high 30 points, while being named the Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.

Courtesy of the Babson College Athletics Communication Office, here is the release from this afternoon’s championship:

BABSON PARK, Mass.—Sophomore Joey Flannery (Acton, Mass.) poured in a game-high 30 points on his way to earning Tournament Most Outstanding Player Honors as top-seeded Babson College defeated third-seeded Springfield College, 72-62, in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) men’s basketball championship game on Sunday afternoon at Staake Gymnasium.

With its 13th straight victory, fifth-ranked Babson (25-2) claimed its first conference title since 2004 and earned the NEWMAC’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Springfield (19-8), which was making its fourth consecutive league tournament championship game appearance, now must wait to see if earns one of 19 at-large bids to the national tournament when the selections are announced at 12:30 p.m. on Monday.

Flannery as 9-of-17 from the floor and 10-of-14 at the free throw line to go along with six rebounds for the Beavers. Seniors Eric Dean (Gilford, N.H.) and John Wickey (Manchester, N.H.) each scored 17 points and combined for 12 rebounds, while sophomore Sam Bohmiller (Franklin, Mass.) chipped in with seven points, six boards and three assists in the win.

Senior Sean Martin (Rindge, N.H.) finished with 15 points, four assists, two rebounds and two steals for the Pride. Graduate student Tim Swenson (Millbury, Mass.) scored 10 points to go along with four boards and two assists, while junior Josh Downes (East Sandwich, Mass.) and first-year Brandon Eckles (East Greenwich, R.I.) each added nine points.

Babson made its first five shots as Flannery scored five quick points and Wickey followed with six straight to build an 11-2 lead just 2:31 into the contest.  Springfield countered with a 9-4 run, getting four points from Swenson and a three-pointer from Eckles to pull within 15-11 at the 14:20 mark, but a three-pointer by Flannery and back-to-back hoops by Wickey and Dean gave Babson a 22-13 edge with 11:39 to go in the period.

Another trey by Eckles and consecutive buckets from junior Alex Garstka (Westfield, Mass.) and Martin capped a 7-0 run that pulled the Pride back within a hoop at 22-20. Flannery and Dean combined for the next eight Babson points as it pushed the lead back to six, but Springfield got three points apiece from Eckles and Downes over the final two and half minutes of the stanza to cut the Beavers’ edge to just 35-32 at the break.

Flannery, who scored 12 of Babson’s first 15 points to open the second half, converted a three-point play to give the hosts a 50-39 lead with 13:20 to go in the contest. Mack knocked down 1-of-2 at the line on the Beavers’ next trip to make it a 12-point game, but the Pride answered with an 8-0 run to pull within 51-47 on a transition layup by junior Garstka with 9:46 remaining.

Wickey pushed the lead back to six with a jumper in the lane, and then fed Dean for a corner triple to push the Green and White’s advantage back to 56-47. Downes countered with five straight points, including a three-point play, to again cut Springfield’s deficit to just four at 56-52 with 5:39 left in the game.

It was as close as the Pride would get though, as Bohmiller connected on a three-pointer and scored all seven of his points as part of a 14-3 run that gave Babson its biggest of the afternoon at 70-55 with 58 seconds to go.

The Green and White shot 47.1 percent (24-of-51) from the field and were 6-of-13 from beyond the arc. The Beavers also held a 34-24 edge on the glass.

Springfield shot 44.4 percent (24-of-54) from the floor, but were just 4-of-16 from deep. The Pride scored 14 points off turnovers and outscored the hosts 32-30 in the paint.

GAME NOTES: Babson won all three meetings against Springfield this season, including a pair of double-digit victories at home…the Green and White has now won three NEWMAC titles with the other two coming in 2002 and 2004…the Beavers’ 13-game winning streak is tied with the 2002-03 team for the third longest in program history…Babson, which outscored the Pride 18-10 at the charity stripe, has won 28 straight games when making more free throws than its opponent…the Beavers are 15-2 at Staake Gymnasium this season, and are 21-0 when scoring 60 points or more…Babson is 22-1 on the year when out-rebounding its opponents.

Mass. College Hoops: Catching Up With Chris Bartley (WPI Basketball)

By Matt Noonan 

It’s been an exciting season for the WPI men’s basketball team, which is currently ranked fourth in the country, according to the latest D3Hoops.com poll.

Chris Bartley, who is in his 13th season with the Engineers, has guided the Crimson and Gray to a 17-1 overall mark, including a 7-0 record in NEWMAC play. Bartley’s crew, which hasn’t lost a regular season contest since falling to Castleton State in November, will look to continue its momentum on Saturday when they host Springfield College for a 3 p.m. tip.

We caught up with Coach Bartley earlier this afternoon to chat about his team’s next contest, but also the Engineers’ resiliency and defense, too.

On the team’s foundation: “I think we’ve always had tough kids. One of the things that’s been really important for us is trying to recruit tough kids and help them with their mental toughness, so we just approach everything by doing the best we can with what we have (each) year. The names change sometimes and the faces changed, but hopefully the foundation and the pillars of the program as far as the work ethic and guys that care about each other and hold each other accountable and play hard every night out.”

On identifying the team’s identity: “If you look at us statistically, we’re pretty good on defense. We kind of hold our own on the boards and when we’re playing well we’re playing a pretty good team defense and the guys play hard. Offensively, I think the biggest thing is that we’re a team that has to share the ball and we have to help each other score. When we struggled earlier against Wheaton and last night against Coast Guard and in the second half against Clark (because of ball movement), but for us to be successful we need to pass it to each other and we need to cut and screen. We’re not the type of team that has guys that’ll create their own shots because we really have to create shots for each other, but when we play the right way we’re pretty good.”

On the importance of team defense: “It always starts with our defense. Every single day starts with our defense and so does every meeting and film session, so it always starts there. (Against Wheaton), Agyei Gregory made some ridiculous shots. He made NBA type shots, but I thought Wheaton came out with a lot more enthusiasm than we did and typically when guys from the other team (knows they’re playing us), I find that (our opponent’s) kids shoot the ball better because they’re more focused. So, if you don’t bring equal intensity level and energy level and enthusiasm, which I didn’t think we did (from the start) that can happen. I think it is important to play through adversity, so I don’t take a lot of quick timeouts, but I think our guys are mature enough to play through stuff like that and I thought we did a good job in the second half of the first half of that game of getting back to our identity and making it a little more difficult for them. I thought we started sharing the ball (toward the end of the first half) and we started to play WPI basketball, which is what it’s all about for us.”

On the play of Ryan Kolb: “He plays exceptionally hard, he really plays hard. I was texting him this morning and was like, ‘Dude, you played really hard last night.’ And when your seniors and best players play really hard, it’s kind of filters down to everybody else. He’s got a lot of versatility in his game, but the biggest thing is he’s a really tough kid. He’s tough mentally, he’s tough physically, he’s a hard shell to crack emotionally because he doesn’t show a ton of emotion, but he’s playing like a senior should and a senior usually does.”

On Domenick Mastascusa and Ryan Kolb working together, as well as the impact of Sam Longwell: “(Kolb and Domenick have) been together now for three years, so they know when one is low (on defense) the other is usually coming high. They know where they’re going to be, too. We pretty much run motion offense, so having those guys in sync and working well together is huge. Some games, it is better for Ryan to be on the perimeter, while other games he needs to be down on the post, so it just depends on the matchup. I think Dom knows when he has a good matchup and goes to the spots where he can score and he’s been terrific for us.

“I think one of the keys to the whole thing has been Sam Longwell. He’s just (exhibits) consistency on both ends of the floor for every single practice and every single game, and he’s just been a rock for us and just has brought it from a leadership standpoint, talent standpoint and toughness standpoint. He often covers (our opponent’s) best player, too. He’s doing it on both ends of the court and he’s really had a special season so far.”

On the play of first-year guard Marcus Middleton: “What I have found with Marcus is he’s a really a good all around player, he’s got a really good understanding of what we’re trying to do and he’s got a lot of confidence in himself, both mental and physical toughness. I think our guys are pretty good when they get an opportunity because they try to take advantage of it and he’s one of those kids where we put him in there in some tough positions and he seems to come through every single time.”

On facing Springfield College on Saturday: “They’re a very mentally tough team. I think Sean Martin is one of the best point guards and one of the toughest kids in the region from what I’ve seen and I think Robbie Burke is the same. Tim Swenson gives them a dimension where he compliments those guys really, really well and he’s a beast in there. They also have a bunch of guys that can make shots from (beyond the arc), so they really have a nice balance and statistically they’re terrific, they do a nice job on defense by holding teams to a low field goal percentage and rebounding the ball well. They also take good care of the ball with Martin as their point guard because Charlie Brock’s teams always execute well. They’re a very, very formidable team, they do everything well, so you really have to be on top of your game to battle and we’ll have to be on Saturday in order to be a position to be successful.”

Catching Up With Charlie Brock (Springfield College Men’s Basketball)

Springfield College Pride (Photo Credit: LaxJournal.com)
Springfield College Pride (Photo Credit: LaxJournal.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Springfield College’s men’s basketball team shocked the country on Sunday afternoon by handing the fifth ranked WPI Engineers their first setback of the season. At the time of the game, though, WPI was ranked second in the nation.

Earlier today, Noontime Sports caught up with head coach Charlie Brock to discuss his team’s win, as well as his team’s outlook toward their final two regular season contests against Clark University and Wheaton College.

On beating WPI: “Well first of all, we played well on Sunday and to beat a team like WPI you have to (because) they’re very, very good and they are a very, very good shooting team from the perimeter. All of their perimeter guys including Ryan Kolb, who’s an inside player that can shoot three’s really well, so that spreads the floor and creates matchup problems, and secondly I thought when we were (playing at WPI in Worcester) and they forced you to do this they are a very good defensively and they force you to do things that you’re not comfortable with typically and I thought we played with a little bit more patience on Sunday than we did up there, and maybe created a better opportunity for scoring for ourselves.”

On the team’s defense and free throw shooting: “I think we’ve evolved as the season has gone along into a better defensive team, a little bit better understanding of what needs to be done with certain players depending upon the kind of player they are and free throw shooting (is something) we all work on. If there were a miracle cure for how to be a great free throw shooting team, we’d all be doing it. It’s one of those things you don’t find in the manual. And at a crucial time of the game and always in a close game, if you knock them down it makes a difference and we did (against WPI).”

On utilizing every member of the team: “They get comfortable with the rotations with the way we would like to do them. Some things mess that up a little bit like guys getting in foul trouble and Sean Martin got into some trouble against WPI, which gave Matt Pascuzzo an opportunity for more minutes and he gave us a great lift and he’s a little water bug, he’s all over the floor. And Tim Swenson, (who) is in a six-year program, a very challenging physical therapy program and the first two years out of high school, we recruited him, but he didn’t think he was going to have time to play, but this is his first year (on our team and) he’s just now coming into a situation where he’s becoming a little bit more comfortable wit what he can do. He was getting in foul trouble early and he’s settled into that situation a little bit, and he’s a good strong body coming in off the bench. We’ve got some great big guys in our league (like) Will Tashman from MIT is a great player, Brian Vayda from Clark University is a great player, and John Wickey from Babson College is a great player, and Kolb is an outstanding player.”

On how the WPI win will help the Pride: “Well we hope so. Again, you’ve got to play well now at this stage of the game (because) it’s crunch time and every time you put your foot on the floor we’ve got to play well, we’ve got to do certain things well, you have to win the battles of the boards, you have to win the battles of the fouls and you have to win the battles of defensive field goal percentage. One of the factors (from) the WPI game was that we were able to get their shooting percentage a little bit lower than they’re accustomed to and have been doing and it was a factor in the game. It was a 60 point game instead of something in the mid 70’s.”

On finishing the regular season on a strong note: “Right now we’re just taking almost every moment at a time and that’s what we try to sell to the degree to which they buy into that and athletes are kind of fickle and you don’t know what they’re thinking, but the main thing we do now is focus on what we’ve got to do to win a game against a really good Clark team. I was just looking at some of their games and they’ve got three games that they’ve lost by one point, one of them in overtime to Tufts University the other night. They got a win over Eastern Connecticut (a squad) that’s a potential NCAA team early in the year. They go down to New York University and lose by one, and we were able to outlast them the first we played them. It was a great game. Their record is deceiving, they’re really good, they’ve got really good players, they’re very well coached and we’ve just got to live in the moment here and do (our best) and try to limit what they want to do and see if we can win the game.”

On the play of Alex Berthiaume: “Well he does a great job of making players around him better. He’s an outstanding passer. He’s a very good ball handler and he contributes to the team’s success for sure in so many ways. The thing that’s interesting about him was last year it was kind of an unknown and even during the course of the year even though he was having great games he was still an unknown, but he wasn’t an unknown this year and so he becomes a focus for teams going against him. If (teams are) going to beat us, they’ll have to limit what he does and that’s what made it more difficult for him. He did sustain an injury just before the holidays and actually over the past couple of weeks has really just ironed itself out to where earlier in January he was a little bit hampered by it. I think he’s very healthy right now, but we’re waiting on another player that we lost (Jordan Rote) a couple of weeks ago and he hasn’t played the last four games and one of those games (was against WPI in Worcester and we were) learning to play without Jordan because he brings such a different kind of look to (our unit). He’s a (player that can get inside), and the kid that replaced him (Nick Sienkiewicz) had a monster game against WPI the other day and he’s a different player, so as a team we’re getting used to that and we’re hopeful that we get Jordan back full strength for the tournament and that’s kind of a long range goal we’ve got right now.”

On being successful in the NEWMAC tournament: “I think any (team from the conference) is capable (of winning the tournament). In order to get there and win it, you can’t stain any injuries to key players, you’ve got to play with smarts (because) you’re doing executing and doing things well, not turning the ball over and taking care of it, and defensively now it becomes even more of a premium because as we go along every game gets tougher and tougher and kids playing harder and harder, so I think if you look at some of the scores of our league against teams from other leagues, we’ve been able to do pretty well, so I think any (team) could make some hay in the tournament.”