OFA, Canton Post Wins; Gear For Duel At Freddie
BY DAVE SHEA
OFA and Canton matched wins on Tuesday night to set the stage for another pivotal NAC Central Boys Basketball showdown between the Blue Devil and Golden Bear programs which take place on Saturday in "The Freddie Badlam Memorial Basketball Celebration Day".
OFA (6-3) moved to 6-0 in divisional play with an 88-50 win over Gouverneur and Canton (7-2) moved to 5-1 with a 66-51 victory over Potsdam.
Malone (4-1, 6-3) also stayed one game off the division lead with a 65-50 win over Massena (2-4, 4-6).
OFA and Canton will square off at 5:30 p.m. in the final game of the day on Saturday which features three boys basketball matchup and a tip-off girls basketball meeting between OFA and Lisbon at 1 p.m. Junior varsity games will be held in the small gym and the schedule is listed below.
OFA 88 - Gouverneur 50: Five players scored in double figures and six scored eight points or more for the Blue Devils who took control of the game with their defense and raced away from a young Wildcat squad with a 30-9 second quarter run.
Jackson Jones scored eight first quarter points and went on to a 16-point effort which included eight rebounds and five blocked shots. MeSean Johnson scored 13 of his 16 points in the first half, went 5-6 from the free throw line and also delivered seven assists, four rebounds and four steals.
Trent Sargent scored 12 of his 14 points over the course of the second and third quarters in active effort which also featured six rebounds, three steals and three assists.
Connor Griffith finished with 13 points and Brogan LaRose led a productive night by the reserves scoring 12 second half points with five rebounds.
Harry Powers netted eight points, Logan Horton added five and David Vernsey grabbed six rebounds and scored four points.
"Another good team win with five players in double figures. We shared the ball really well and I thought our post players saw the floor very well. Mesean Johnson looked to score more which is something we need. Jackson Jones had his typical double double and I thought that was the most offensive minded Connor Griffith has been and that is something we need him to do now," said OFA Coach Mark Henry.
"The bench gave very solid minutes and Brogan LaRose did a good job rebounding on the offensive end. We need to have three great practices before Canton comes in for the Freddie on Saturday."
Garret LeClair scored a game-high 19 points for Gouverneur with 16 in the second half and Carter Simmons and Connor Wood each scored seven points. Other Wildcat scoring came from: Cayden Storie (5), Cayden Stowell (2), Sully Rumble (5) and Brock Cox (5).
"We have a young team which is coming along well. We are not ready to compete against that team (OFA). They are final four caliber but we are getting better," said Gouverneur Coach John Free.
"We have some good sophomores and we are looking forward to seeing them develop."
OFA JV's 52 - Gouverneur 39: Kam Johnson and Aiden LaFlair scored 12 and 11 points leading OFA on the offensive end and Coach Dakota Brady cited the Devils' team defense which keyed a 19-9 third quarter pull-away. Seah Polniak and Andrew Loffler each scored six points and Alex Mitchell tallied five.
Other OFA scoring came from: Justice McIntyre (4), Connor Graveline (4), Jacob Farley (2) and Brady Bullock (2).
"I thought our defense was good tonight. We held then down well," said Coach Brady.
Seventh grader Blaine Rumble and Hugh Colburn scored 14 and 11 points leading Gouverneur followed by Ethan Platt and Davis Cole with five points. Jared Donaldson and Mason Witherell added two points and one point.
SATURDAY'S "FREDDIE" SCHEDULE
1 p.m.: Main Gym - OFA Girls vs. Lisbon
2:30 p.m.: Small Gym - JV OFA Girls vs. Lisbon
2:30 p.m.: Main Gym - Old Forge vs. Lisbon
4 p.m.: Small Gym - JV OFA Boys vs. Canton
4 p.m.: Main Gym - Indian River vs. Massena
5:30 p.m.: Small Gym - JV Indian River vs. Massena
5:30 p.m.: Main Gym - OFA Boys Varsity vs. Canton
CANTON, MALONE WIN
Canton 66 - Potsdam 51: Andy Downs buried five 3-pointers on the night scored of 15 of his 32 points in the second quarter where the Bears gained a 22-10 advantage pulling away from a 16-12 first quarter lead. Caleb Bentley-Hicks tallied 10 points and Austin Cloce and Sam Fadden followed with seven and five points. The Canton scoring was rounded out by Ethan Funia (3), Josh Kennedy (3), Noah Longshore (2), Zach VanBrockln (2) and Chris Downs Jr. (2).
Francesco Polenta and Noah Dominy led Potsdam with 18 and 15 points and Aiden Stickles tallied nine. Other scoring came from Nabil Eli-Labban (1) and Carter Newcombe (6).
Malone 65, Massena 50: The Huskies bookended their win with an 18-8 first quarter lead and a 21-12 finishing burst after Massena rallied for a 21-14 advantage in the third quarter. Payton Poirier led the Huskies with 17 points, Gavin Barse buried four 3s for 12 points and Keegan Monnette netted 11.
Ryan Herrick led Massena with 14 points followed by Chris McGregor and Zach LaBarge with 10 and Eric Barney with nine.