By The Beacon Staff
The 2014-15 regular season ended for both the Lady’s and Men’s Seawolves teams this past Saturday on the Vermont Tech floor with wins that could best be described as cars with a few square wheels. While the wins were not the prettiest in terms of basketball aesthetics, both teams enter the YSCC Elite 8 tournament, hosted by New Hampshire Technical Institute, riding impressive winning streaks that include the dismantling of conference rival Central Maine Community College in South Portland last Wednesday evening.
On the women’s side of the court, the Lady Wolves have compiled an 18-7 overall record while finishing the season with an 11-3 conference record and riding a 7 game win streak which includes 9 straight conference wins.
The men enter next weekend’s tournament sporting a 4 game win streak. While their loss 5 games ago was at the hands of Dean College, they have remained perfect in conference play, 14-0. The men have remained perfect to the point of stealing a win on CMCC’s court when Jordan DeRosby nailed a three point shot with 4 seconds remaining in a hotly contested game.
The Lady Wolves will face Vermont Tech on Thursday (SMCC has beaten the Lady Knights twice this season 108-53 and 74-49); the time of the game has yet to be determined. The Men Wolves will start their post-season journey playing Eastern Maine Community College on Friday (they too have won both 94-46 and 92-71), and like the women’s game the time has yet to be determined as of the print deadline.
As both teams have combined for an 8-0 record over the past 2 weeks, the game that should be highlighted in this column are the CMCC games. Regardless of how you feel about CMCC, they have been the team to beat in the YSCC for the past few seasons. Last Wednesday evening proved to be quite satisfactory for the Seawolves fan.
The Lady Seawolves took to the floor first and proceeded to build a 7-0 lead over the course of the opening 5 minutes over a Mustang team that had a hard time finding the bottom of the net. Eventually CMCC would get on the scoreboard at the 14:49 mark when Laura Soohey made 1 of 2 free throws.
CMCC would claw their way back into the game pulling to within 2 (11-13 at the 9:58 mark), after which SMCC would outscore the Mustangs 29-17, securing a 42-28 halftime lead.
If there was a tone that could be detected in the first 20 minutes of play, it was one of frustration on CMCC’s part (28% shooting from the floor while going zero for 6 from 3pt land), and confidence on SMCC’s part. SMCC guard Tiana Burton contributed 14pts off the bench, 9 of which came from 3pt land on 3-4 shooting from behind the arch. An exclamation mark was added as the half ended with a Jordan Turner steal of an inbound pass, resulting in an uncontested layup and a 14pt halftime lead.
The men’s game started off in similar fashion as the Seawolves jumped out to a 7pt lead starting off with a 3pt shot from Greyson Waterman, a field goal from Atencio Martin and 2 free throws from Tyheem Simon. Immediately CMCC countered, tying the score at 7 with plenty of time remaining in the first half.
Whereas the Lady Seawolves built a comfortable 14pt halftime lead – much with the help of CMCC’s poor shooting percentage – the men Seawolves found themselves in a contest that ebbed back and forth between scoring spurts. The Seawolves would grab a 12pt lead (30-18 at the 6:29 mark) and be able to sustain an 8pt lead going into halftime.
The second half of the women’s game opened up with SMCC spotting the Mustangs the opening 2pts and responding with a 12-2 run that padded the lead to 54-32, a 22pt lead that CMCC would only be able to whittle down to 10 (61-51) with 9 minutes left.
Again Tiana Burton would slam the door shut against CMCC with the 4th of her 3 pointers, and again the Lady Wolves would build a 17pt lead through the scoring of Maria Veino and Tiana Burton.
When the final buzzer sounded the Lady Seawolves walked off the court with an 81-67 victory over conference rival CMCC, and for the curious reader the last time the ladies were on the winning side against CMCC was in the fall semester of the 2011-2012 season.
The second half of the men’s game saw SMCC build a 20pt lead, which would never seriously be challenged by the Mustangs. 10 SMCC players would score in the 2nd half, as the team stat line would read as 69.2% shooting from the free throw line, 40% from 3pt land, and 53.1% field goal shooting.
With the victories over CMCC, the SMCC squads finished out their seasons with wins over Vermont Tech in Randolph, Vermont. Up next, the YSCC Elite 8 Tournament, of which the winner will receive an automatic invite to the USCAA national tournament in Uniontown, PA.
With all of the excitement surrounding the Seawolve squads this season, there is a down side to the Elite 8 Tournament: NHTI will not be streaming the tournament on line. In an effort to set this off, The Beacon will be doing its best to post highlights of the Seawolves games on its Youtube Channel, SMCCBeacon.