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How the conferences shake out as 2014 approaches

by - Published December 31, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
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Non-conference play is just about over at this point. Conference games are ready to take over the rest of the slate, with a few having an “opening day” of sorts, including the Big East with its well-publicized day of five games on Tuesday. A few have already had early conference games, with the West Coast Conference having its opening day on Saturday.

How are the conferences shaping up? Which ones look like we thought and which ones look nothing like what we thought before the season? Here is a look at all 32 conferences as conference play beckons.

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2013 BABC Holiday Classic – Sunday notes

by - Published December 30, 2013 in Columns
author_kasiecki

ROXBURY, Mass. – Two more games were on tap Sunday to close out the 2013 BABC Holiday Classic. Both involved Boston City League teams we saw on Friday, but with new opponents, and it was a split for the city schools with the loss being an impressive display by the winning team.

Sunday Scoreboard

Dorchester (MA) High 75, Nashua (NH) Bishop Guertin 63
Springfield (MA) Putnam 69, Hyde Park (MA) New Mission School 52

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Rhode Island is experiencing the predicted growing pains

by - Published December 30, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
rhodeisland

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – As non-conference play winds down, Rhode Island is experiencing what many could have predicted they would before the season: growing pains. Their 77-64 loss to Southern Miss is perhaps a microcosm of the season, and it’s not surprising that it left head coach Dan Hurley musing about the state of his team as Atlantic 10 play approaches.

Rhode Island certainly had their moments. They responded to an early blitz by the Golden Eagles, leading for stretches in the first half and tying the game early in the second half. But once Southern Miss scored eight unanswered points to break the tie, the Rams were playing catch-up the rest of the way. They rallied to within 64-62, but the Golden Eagles then scored the next 11 points to seal it.

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Opportunity awaits Southern Miss as conference play approaches

by - Published December 28, 2013 in Columns
southernmiss

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – Southern Miss has done a lot of good things in non-conference play. The latest is their 77-64 win at Rhode Island on Saturday, one that is in sum a good statement of where this team is. With just one game left before Conference USA play, there is an added challenge for this team, but there is also opportunity.

The Golden Eagles are an experienced and balanced bunch, as the five starters all average between nine and 12 points per game. Nine players average double-digit minutes, with only point guard Neil Watson averaging more than 28 per game. They have four seniors who play a lot of minutes and several juniors right behind them.

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2013 BABC Holiday Classic – Friday notes

by - Published December 28, 2013 in Columns
author_kasiecki

ROXBURY, Mass. – The first day of games at the 2013 BABC Holiday Classic is in the books. Now an event with three days of games, after starting life as a tournament, the 18th incarnation of it featured three teams from outside of Massachusetts and a homecoming for a coach returning to the high school landscape this year. With four games done, there was some good action to see and some good stories to take note of on the day.

Friday scoreboard

Hyde Park (MA) New Mission School 67, Nashua (NH) Bishop Guertin 48
Cambridge (MA) Rindge & Latin School 78, Springfield (MA) Central HS 46
Windsor (CT) School 65, East Boston (MA) High 64
Warwick (RI) Bishop Hendricken 58, Dorchester (MA) High 51

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UMass-Lowell’s potential more visible after first game at the Tsongas Center

by - Published December 23, 2013 in Columns
umass_lowell

LOWELL, Mass. – The hope is that Saturday is part of a turning point for UMass-Lowell. That holds for more than just the overall future of the basketball program, although it is most noteworthy from a long-term vantage point. While Pat Duquette emerges with mixed feelings, there appears to be more positive than negative, as well as some thoughts for the immediate future.

“I didn’t think we played well enough to deserve to win today, which is too bad because it was certainly a historic day for the UMass-Lowell men’s basketball program and an exciting day for everybody involved,” said the River Hawk mentor after a 95-77 loss at the Tsongas Center.

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Young Duquesne is trying to get better as Atlantic 10 play looms

by - Published December 23, 2013 in Columns
duquesne

LOWELL, Mass. – Perhaps it’s fitting that Duquesne’s opponent on Saturday was UMass-Lowell, a new entrant to Division I this season. Even though Duquesne’s first season was 100 years ago, in some ways Jim Ferry had to start over when he took the job over a year ago. And while their 95-77 win at UMass-Lowell doesn’t contain signs that they’re about to become a contender in the Atlantic 10, it was a step in the right direction nonetheless.

Ferry isn’t talking like this is a team that has its eye on a conference title and nothing less. The Dukes will come into every game wanting to win and thinking they can win the game if they play the right way, but this is a team that has a little to go before they can contend.

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Weekend notes – December 23, 2013

by - Published December 23, 2013 in Columns
author_kasiecki

We just got through a busy weekend of college basketball. It wasn’t loaded with headline-grabbing upsets, but it had a lot of good matchups, including later Saturday in New York and Las Vegas. On Sunday, the Diamond Head Classic got going in Hawaii.

Here are notes on some important matchups and results from both days.

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New Hampshire is going through a very challenging time

by - Published December 19, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
newhampshire

DURHAM, N.H. – There are challenges, and then there’s what New Hampshire is going through and has in front of them. Nine straight losses, which is the Wildcats’ current streak after dropping a 62-48 decision to Dartmouth at home on Wednesday, appear to be just the beginning of them.

Can things get worse? They might before they get better largely because of personnel, and it’s not just who they don’t have right now.

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Dartmouth may not be just a young and promising team anymore

by - Published December 19, 2013 in Columns
dartmouth

DURHAM, N.H. – Dartmouth may be ready to turn a corner and not just be a young, promising team anymore. The latest evidence came on Wednesday night, when they lost a lead they held for a while and answered right back with a game-changing 12-0 run to take the lead for good, and then later put away an opponent on the road.

“In the past, when teams would make a run and come back, we would collapse,” said junior forward Gabas Maldunas, who had 12 points and 13 rebounds in their 62-48 win at New Hampshire. “We didn’t have the leadership on the court to help us get through the comeback.”

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Young UNLV team grows in Brooklyn

November 23, 2014 by

unlv

Teams often grow from early season tournaments, and that appears to be what UNLV did in Brooklyn. The young Runnin’ Rebels need the experience.

Simply put, Syracuse needs to improve offensively

November 22, 2014 by

syracuse

Jim Boeheim didn’t have many things to say about his team’s offense, but that said it all. It’s at that end of the floor that Syracuse’s fate this season will be determined.

Growing pains are here for talented Brown team

November 20, 2014 by

brown

Brown has good talent and should be a factor in the Ivy League, but with three sophomores starting on the perimeter, growing pains are in the foreseeable future

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2014 Prep School Tour

Missed a recap of an open gym workout? We have them all right here for you.

Sept. 9: Putnam Science Academy
Sept 10: Commonwealth Academy
Sept. 11: St. Andrew's
Sept. 12: Northfield Mount Hermon
Sept. 16: Brewster Academy and Phillips Exeter
Sept. 17: Brooks School
Sept. 21: Holderness School
Sept. 23: St. Thomas More and Marianapolis Prep
Sept. 24: South Kent School and Kent School
Sept. 25: Williston Northampton
Sept. 28: Wilbraham and Monson Academy and Suffield Academy
Sept. 30: New Hampton
Oct. 5: Worcester Academy
Oct. 7: Brimmer and May
Oct. 8: Cushing Academy
Oct. 9: Tilton
Oct. 12: Tabor Academy and Rivers School
Oct. 14: The Master's School
Oct. 16: Vermont Academy

You can also find them all right here.

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Recruiting Coverage

New England Prep Schools 2014-15: looking back and looking ahead

November 3, 2014 by

nepsac

With a series of prep school open gym visits in the book and the season not far away, here’s a look back at open gyms and a look forward to the season in the New England prep school ranks.

Marianapolis Prep will battle in Class AA

October 20, 2014 by

marianapolis

Marianapolis Prep is far from loaded with talent, but they have enough perimeter talent to be dangerous. As is usually the case, they will battle and be a tough out in Class AA.

New Vermont Academy coach has put together a contender

October 17, 2014 by

vermontacademy

Vermont Academy has a new coach for the second year in a row, but they shouldn’t skip a beat. They have enough talent to win a lot of games and make a deep run in NEPSAC Class AA.

The Master’s School has good students and talent

October 15, 2014 by

mastersschool

The Master’s School has a number of good students, and they will continue to head to college later. This time around, they also have some talent on the hardwood and should win a few more games.

Rivers will try to build on a breakthrough season

October 13, 2014 by

riversschool

The Rivers School had a breakthrough season last year, winning the Independent School League. They will try to build on that with a team that loses a lot but also returns a lot from last season’s team.