Chateaugay, Harrisville Turn Back Heuvelton, H-D
BY DAVE SHEA
East is East and West is West and never the twain shall meet.
Except in the Section 10 Basketball Tournament when the Class D Championship game often involves talented teams from the NAC West and the NAC East Divisions.
Never was that scenario was put in place better than on Tuesday night at SUNY Potsdam's Maxcy Hall when a much anticipated match of champions from the East and West borders of Section 10 was realized.
Top seeded 22-0 and number one state-ranked Chateaguay against 18-4, fifth ranked and reigning state champion Harrisville which went 14-0 in the NAC West. The two small school juggernauts completed their parallel runs of excellence to lock into Saturday's 2:45 p.m. meeting for the Class D Championship back at Maxcy Hall.
Both Harrisville and Chateaugay were challenged and tested by young teams from Hermon-DeKalb and Heuvelton and both responded with outstanding defense and offensive leadership.
Harrisville used a 21-3 fourth quarter finish to down 11th ranked H-D (18-4) 58-41 and Chateaugay answered a staunch second quarter rally by Heuvelton (11-10) by dominating the second half for a 66-43 victory.
Harrisville 58 - H-D 41: For three quarters the Pirates and Green Demons literally matched baskets with H-D coming away with a 38-37 lead. The Pirates' senior guard Jadon Williams and H-D junior center Jay Carrow matched big plays on the offense showing game-breaking abilities.
Carrow buried his first five shots scoring 10 points in the first quarter, enjoyed stints of dominance on the boards and scored 20 points through three quarters.
But the after drawing his third and fourth fouls early in the fourth quarter he was held scoreless as Harrisville pulled away led by the facilitating and finishing of Sullivan. Sullivan netted five of six free throw attempts in the fourth quarter to complete a 7-8 showing on the game where he scored 16 points and dished out several pretty assists off dribble drives down the lane.
While the Harrisville defense went into the lock down mode sophomore guard Will Taylor stepped into break-out role burying three straight pointers in the final quarter and finished with 15 points on five 3s.
"Will Taylor is a sophomore but he wants to shoot any time he gets the chance. Next year we will work on him taking the ball to the basket," said Harrisville Coach Brian Coloney.
"H-D has a good team and they pushed us to the brink. We played great defense in the fourth quarter and did a good job containing Jay Carrow. We actually did a fairly good job the whole game but is a just a beast and very hard to defend. He made some tough shots."
While the over-playing Harrisville defense utilized weak side help to create turnovers the Pirate offense featured four players in double figures. Nate Schmitt used tough finishes at the goal to anchor a 15-point effort and center Adam Szlamcynski tallied 10 points off nice entry passes to the post. Nolan Parrow added two points.
Following Carrow in the H-D offense were: Adam Lynch and Jacob Spencer with seven points, 3-pointers from Jacob Coller and Zach Denesha and a free throw from Art Carr.
"We played a great three quarters and I think we did all we could," said H-D Coach Dylan Klock. "Harrisville is just an outstanding team."
Chateaugay 66 - Heuvelton 43: The game opened with Heuvelton enjoying success at preventing good 3-point looks for Section 10 Career Scoring leader Jonah McDonald but found itself trailing 19-2. McDonald shifted his offensive focus inside while the tandem of Jed McDonald and Logan Secure came up with a series of offensive rebounds.
Heuvelton shored up its defensive rebounding and sparked by three-pointers by Braeden Free and Nate Mashaw cut the difference to 19-12 before McDonald buried a three-pointer and a drive to finish the first quarter with 18 points in a 24-13 lead. Undaunted HCS sustained its rally led by two 3s and eight points by Mashaw and 3s by Free and Jed Crawford and finished the first half on a 10-2 run and the cut the difference to 34-32.
Chateaugay answered by ramping up its defense and staged a pull-away when Heuvelton missed its first four free throws of the third quarter and failed to convert some close range opportunities. Heuvelton managed to make only four of 12 free throws in the second half where Chateaugay gained a 30-11 advantage.
"We really intensified our defense led by Jed McDonald and Carson Richards and we did a great job defending Nate Mashaw and Braeden Free who can hit from long range and take the ball to the basket. They are tough players" said Chateaugay Coach Mike Martin.
"And we took the ball to the basket very well."
Jonah McDonald (10 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 steals) continued his march toward 2000 points by going 15-for-15 at the foul line scoring a game-high 34 points and leading Chateaugay to a 22-24 team free throw showing. Jed McDonald (6 rebounds, 4 steals) tallied 13 points with 11 in the second half and Walker Martin tallied 14 points.
Carson Richards (8 rebounds) and Logan Secore (8 rebounds) added three and two points.
"This was a battle tonight. Both teams played with great intensity. We started out really well and attacked the basket. We had a big lead and Heuvelton battled their way back in before the half. Our defense really dug in the second half and locked them down. Only gave up 11 points to a talented team," said Chateaugay Assistant Coach Jason LaPlante. 'We are really proud of our guys, it was a great team win. Carson Richards had a great game off the bench and Logan Secore again did so many little things. Jed McDonald really stepped up in the second half and attacked the rim. Walker Martin made some big plays. Jonah McDionald continues to do special things. Not just scoring but he rebounded well and played great defense on the Free kid in the second half".
Nate Mashaw buried three 3s leading Heuvelton with 17 points and scored 14 points leading the comeback from the 19-2 deficit. Braeden Free went 5-6 from the foul line scoring 11 points and Gavin Barney tallied seven points and his creative inside finishing was another key component in the comeback.
Rounding out the Heuvelton scoring were: Cole Rickett (2), Jed Crayford (3), Josh Wrobel (2) and Bryce Lake (1).
"We did a great job getting back in the game but in the third quarter we didn't box out well, missed some shots and they got away from us," said Heuvelton Coach Josh McAllister.
"Chateaugay is a very good team. Defensively they come at you in waves."