March 29, 2020
BANGOR DAILY NEWS (BANGOR, MAINE

Big men beat up Husson > New Jersey team wins Bunyan title

BANGOR – For the final seven minutes of Sunday’s championship game of the Paul Bunyan Invitational, two words dominated James Catalano’s periodic sideline bellows.

“Yo!” was the first (That succeeded in getting the attention of his New Jersey Institute of Technology players).

And for seven minutes, he followed with another one-word command: “Low!”

That’s low as in Get-The-Ball-Down-Low. As in Give-It-To-The-Big-Fellas.

And it worked.

The Highlanders of Newark, N.J., repeatedly got the ball where they wanted it down the stretch while nipping Husson College 77-74.

For the 3-2 Highlanders, “Low” meant the ball was going to end up in the hands of either lanky 6-foot-6 leaper Demond Cowins or burly 6-4 banger Phil Renaud.

Cowins scored 21 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, Renaud added 14 and grabbed 12 rebounds in the game.

And as Husson coach Warren Caruso pointed out, after the Braves had surged back from seven points down to take a five-point lead with 6:56 to play, the NJIT duo proved unstoppable.

“They had the two guys they wanted shooting the ball,” said Caruso, whose team fell to 3-2. “I’m not sure at times we had the guys we wanted shooting the ball down the stretch.”

After Husson’s Robert Pilsbury connected on his second 3-pointer in less than a minute and drew a foul, the Braves held a 68-63 lead, had momentum, and seemed in control.

But Pilsbury, who made seven of 12 3-point attempts en route to a game-high 23-point afternoon, never scored again and didn’t even get a shot off over the final three minutes.

Cowins and Renaud, meanwhile, were making life miserable for the Braves down low, scoring nine straight NJIT points in a 9-2 run.

Catalano said the Highlanders’ success down low was pretty simple.

“They didn’t defend the flashback that we run and they were just giving us the ball eight feet from the basket,” Catalano said.

And when the NJIT big men got the ball, they finished.

“What we did was we used our heads and saw that they really couldn’t defend us down low,” Cowins said. “So what we did was we cleared the men out and we went down strong. We had to pound the ball low.”

The Highlanders pushed their lead to 76-71 when they worked the shot clock to one second and Ahmad Rasool drove the lane and scored on a layup with 16 seconds left in the game.

Quinson Lancaster (10 points) answered for Husson on conventional 3-point play with nine seconds left and the Highlanders made one of two free throws with eight seconds to go to make it 77-74.

The Braves’ bid to send the game into overtime failed when Lancaster dribbled the length of the court and missed an off-balance 25-footer at the buzzer.

Matt Breen added 11 points and seven rebounds for the Braves.

Owain States scored 18 and Rasool notched 13 for NJIT.

Cowins was named the tourney’s MVP. He was joined on the All-Tourney team by Renaud, Husson’s Pilsbury and Randy Fletcher, Green Mountain College’s John Saporita and UM-Machias guard Josh Thornton.

In Sunday’s consolation, the University of Maine at Machias reeled off a 10-0 run over a two-minute span midway through the second half to catch up to Green Mountain (Vt.) College and went on to post an 83-82 win.

Tony Heal scored 15 of his 17 points in the pivotal second half for the Clippers while Thornton led the way with 20. Sharrief Sims added 16, Kenneth Ralph contributed 12 and point guard Albert Whittaker had 11.

Saporita scored 21 for Green Mountain.

Highlanders 77, Braves 74

NJIT (3-2) Husson (3-2)

Player G AG F AF TP Player G AG F AF TP

Forst 1 4 1 2 3 Armenakis 1 1 0 0 2

Feintuch 0 2 0 0 0 Fletcher 4 10 0 0 8

Rasool 5 11 3 4 13 Rivera 2 7 0 1 4

Castle 4 13 0 0 8 Lancaster 4 10 1 1 10

States 4 11 7 8 18 Russo 3 4 2 2 8

Renaud 5 9 4 6 14 Brown 1 2 0 0 2

Cowins 9 13 3 4 21 Pilsbury 8 14 0 1 23

Accurso 0 0 0 0 0 Robb 0 4 2 2 2

Breen 4 9 3 4 11

Griffin 2 3 0 0 4

Totals 28 63 18 24 77 Totals 29 64 8 11 74

NJIT 30 77

Husson 38 74

3-pt. goals: New Jersey Institute of Technology (3-12): Feintuch 0-1, Rasool 0-2, Castle 0-2, States 3-7; Husson (8-23): Fletcher 0-1, Rivera 0-2, Lancaster 1-5, Russo 0-1, Pilsbury 7-12, Robb 0-2

Attendance: 300 (est.)

NJ Tech. 101, UM-Machias 87

(Saturday’s First Game)

New Jersey Tech. 101

Rasool 6-2-15, Castle 6-4-18, States 6-0-17, Renaud 6-4-16, Cowans 7-4-18, Frost 2-0-4, Feintuch 1-0-2, Eyherarendy 1-2-4, Coley 2-0-6, Martins 0-1-1, Urban, Trevino, Accureo

UM-Machias 87

Whittaker 5-2-14, Thornton 7-1-19, Sims 3-0-6, Khan 3-0-6, Heal 4-1-11, Hopeson 3-2-8, Knowles 5-2-13, Ralph 3-4-10, Bean, Wignes

3-pt. goals: States 5, Castle 2, Coley 2, Rasool; Thorton 4, Whittaker 2, Heal 2, Knowles

Halftime: New Jersey 52-49

Husson 94, Green Mountain 74

(Saturday’s Second Game)

Green Mountain 74

Baporita 10-8-32, Newsome 1-0-3, Ryerson 3-2-11, Chapple 2-0-4, Szymanski 5-5-15, Wade 2-0-4, Batte 2-0-5, Childers, Kirchhoff

Husson 94

Fletcher 8-1-17, Lancaster 3-2-10, Russo 2-0-5, Robb 2-0-4, Breen 2-2-6, Rivera 6-5-20, Brown 1-0-3, Pilsbury 10-0-25, Griffin 2-0-4, Armenakis

3-pt. goals: Baporita 4, Ryerson 3, Newsome, Batte; Pilsbury 5, Rivera 3, Lancaster 2, Russo, Brown

Halftime: Husson 46-38

UM-Machias 83, Green Mtn. 80

(Sunday’s Consolation)

Green Mountain 83

Saporita 4-12-22, Newsome 5-3-14, Ryerson 5-3-18, Chapple 1-0-2, Szymanski 5-2-12, Childers 1-2-4, Rirchhoff 0-2-2, Wade 1-4-6, Batte

UM-Machias 83

Whittaker 5-1-11, Thornton 6-7-20, Sims 4-8-16, Ralph 4-4-12, Heal 6-3-17, Hopeson 1-1-3, Knowles 1-0-2, Khan 1-0-2, Bean

3-pt. goals: Ryerson 5, Saporita 2, Newsome; Heal 2, Thorton

Halftime: Green Mountain 35-32


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