Archive for December, 2008

Warriors top Dawgs in Bayshore finale

December 31, 2008

Hope everyone is having a good holiday season, whether it be spending time with family and friends, or watching the plethora of college football bowl games on ESPN.  Anyone tune into Rutger’s 29-23 win over North Carolina St. in the PapaJohns.com Bowl on Monday afternoon?  Awesome game, and a great way to end a season that appeared to be over after six games as the Scarlet Knights started out 1-5.

Alright, onto the most recent boys basketball game, a rather uninspiring loss to say the least.  In the final game of the Bayshore Holiday Tournament, the Curtis Warriors pummeled the Dawgs by a final score of 59-44.  The deficit would have been in the 20s if it weren’t for a pair of 3s by junior Lucas Glass (who, by the way, was very impressive, scoring 8 points in about 3 minutes of action) in garbage time.

From my vantage point, I saw a team that came out fired up and ready to play, but quickly lost that edge once Curtis went up by 10 points.  In a game like basketball, where points can be put on the board in a hurry, it is so important for the players not to scoreboard watch and simply play the game.  It was clear that RFH got nervous once the Curtis lead went into double-digits, even though they were playing quite well during the first quarter and a half.

There are two very telling stats from this game that I’d like to share.

1) 100%Justin Hook’s shooting percentage in the first quarter.  Hook took 4 shots and drained each one of them, all while being guarded by Curtis’ best player, Halil Kawacevik. He finished the first quarter with 9 points. Over the course of the rest of the game, Hook only took 5 more shots, making two of them.  Why only 5 more shots for the big man, after he was so dominant in the first quarter?  I’d love to see Hook more involved in the flow of the offense, as I think he was underutilized against the Warriors.

2) 7-23 – The combined field goal numbers for starting guards Matt Blumel, James LeCardi, and Jordan Iarussi.  I am sure this group is well aware that they had an off night as far as shooting goes.  Which brings me back to my last point; when the shots aren’t falling from deep, why not get it down low for some easy lay-ups?  I know that’s not as easy as it sounds on paper, but at least give it a shot, right?

Stepping away from boys side of things, a congratulations is due for the girls basketball team for their come from behind victory in the championship game of the WOBM Christmas Classic.  This team has impressed so far, but honestly, is anyone surprised?  After four years at RFH, I take for granted a solid girls basketball team.

That’s enough out of me for now.  Enjoy New Years, and I’ll see you in 2009!

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Dawgs fall to Hornets in 1st loss of the season

December 24, 2008

Just got back from Holmdel after witnessing a rather surprising loss.  I figured that after a shaky start against Matawan, this team would come out fired up and ready to blow Holmdel out of the gym.  Alas, this was not the case, and the Hornets came away with a 51-40 victory.

Couple of quick hits from the game:

1) Rumson-FH is struggling on offense right now.  Lots of good dribble penetration followed by poor finishing.  I’d love to see some more dribble-drives followed by kick-outs to an open shooter for a 3.

2) I liked what I saw out of Justin Hook tonight.  He didn’t do anything flashy, but quietly scored 11 points, in addition to the rebounds and blocks that he’s always consistent with.  Hook could definitely be that third option on offense behind Matt Blumel and James LeCardi.

3) Defensively, the Dawgs had no answer for Eric Shirvanian of Holmdel.  The kid shot 9-16 from the field, with 5 out of those 9 being 3-pointers.  He was hitting from everywhere, including a buzzer beater just before halftime.  Every time RFH came up with a big bucket, it seemed like it was Shirvanian that answered for Holmdel.

4) Moving into the next few games, I am most interested in seeing how this team responds.  This next 3-5 game stretch is an opportunity for players, coaches, and fans alike to see the character of this team.  How will they respond? The upcoming tournament will be a great test for this squad.

Off to the races

December 23, 2008

Well, for better or for worse, I have officially entered the world of blogging.  What does that mean for you, the avid RFH basketball fan?  It means that in addition to the more formal game articles and interviews that we post on the Dawg Report, I’ll be blogging from time to time.  Sometimes the blog will feature analysis and thoughts on the boys and girls basketball teams; other times, I’ll throw in a ‘You Wouldn’t Have Known This From Sitting In The Stands’ type story; you might even get a rant here and there about the state of the Rutgers men’s basketball team, depending on how frustrated I get once my Scarlet Knights start getting clobbered during the Big East schedule.  The point is, this blog will be a more informal place for me to get the fans even more coverage of RFH basketball.

I’m sure some of you are already wondering, what’s with the name of the blog?  Back when I was a freshman, Joe Murphy (RFH physical education teacher and offensive line coach) gave me the nickname Scoop, because, as the resident reporter at school, I usually have the “scoop” on RFH sports.  But enough about me; let’s talk basketball.

We’ll start with the girls, simply because after the first two games, I really don’t have that much to say.  So far, the girls have participated in a 77-15 beatdown of Matawan  and a 75-26 pounding of Monsignor Donovan.   Obviously, those two scores are real eye-catchers, simply because of the gigantic margin of victory.   Yes, blowouts like that are great. But I am even more impressed that the girls have put 152 points on the scoreboard through two games.  We all know what to expect on defense from a Sourlis-coached team.  Holding teams to 15 points and 26 points in the first two games of the season is phenomenal.  But point totals in the 70s are really uncommon for a high school team.  Getting off to such a solid start on offense definitely bodes well for the girls.

Moving on to the boys, I think there is a bit more to talk about, considering they found themselves down 17-5 early in their season opener.  I truly believe that the abrupt change of game location due to a leak in the gym at RFH had a role in the team coming out flat.  One of the most exciting things for a high school athlete is playing your opener in front of a jacked up home crowd, and having to head out to Matawan must have been a dissappointment.  I know the traditionalists will argue that you do what you have to do, regardless of the circumstances, and there’s no excuse for such a poor start.  But as a fellow athlete, I can attest to the fact that when you’re preparing to play under one set of conditions, and then suddenly, you have to prepare for another, it can shake you mentally.

Ultimately, the boys pulled out the 48-37 win, which is the most important thing.  I am excited by the way it happened, with sophomore Kevin Alter knocking down three big 3-pointers to spur the team towards a victory.  Alter stepping in and making such an impact is huge for the long term prospects for this team.  Matt Blumel and James LeCardi both scoring in single digits is simply an anomaly; they will both be consistent double digit scorers throughout the season.  But after that, where is the rest of the offense going to come from?  The jury is still out on who the complimentary third and fourth options are going to be.  Could it be Alter? At this point, who knows.  Nonetheless, Alter’s performance shows that this team has depth, which is always a positive.

Anyways, that’s enough out of me.  Good luck to both the boys and girls tonight at Holmdel.  Happy Holidays to all!