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Old Bridge Hangs On To Upset Colonia, 43-40
By Greg Machos
December 23, 2010
OLD BRIDGE, NJ--Prior to the Christmas holiday, Colonia was taking on Old Bridge in a GMC Red Division matchup. Both teams had started off the season with two losses in division play with Colonia falling to St. Joe's (48-45) on opening night and Perth Amboy on Tuesday night (53-40) while Old Bridge lost to South Brunswick (60-35) and St. Joe's (69-47) by over 20 points.
The Knights showed the potential as well as the inexperience of its players at the Hoop Group Headquarters Fall League during the off-season by winning four straight to start the season, and then lost four in a row to finish at 4-4. The two qualities of this young and talented team came into play again on Thursday afternoon against Colonia. Trailing 28-21 with 4:44 to go in the third quarter, the Knights showed their promise with a 19-6 surge over a span of 9:34 to take a 40-34 lead with 3:10 to play. Then came the inexperience as OBHS tried to score rather than take time off the clock, turned the ball over, and missed free throws to give Colonia more than enough opportunities to get back into the game.
It would come down to freshman guard, Tyler Drews, who scored seven points including four of five from the charity stripe in the second half. Fouled with five seconds to go, and iced twice by Patriot timeouts, Drews made both free throws, and then junior Edgar Chavarria (5 points) came up with a steal as time expired for a 43-40 upset win over the sixth ranked team in the GMC Hoops Pre-Season Top Ten. For the game, the Knights were 14 of 22 at the line versus only 8 of 12 by the Patriots. However, in the second half, Old Bridge was only 9 of 16 including two of six from the charity stripe over the last 2:33. Leading the way for the Knights was junior forward, Isaiah Velez, who scored eight of his team high 13 points in the second half. Chipping in was sophomore forward, Sultan Aminu, who added 10 points including seven in the first half. Colonia was led by C.J. Gray, who scored nine in both halves for a game high 18 while Matt Wagner chipped in with 13 points all scored in the first half.
For the game, Colonia had more field goals with 14 including four from beyond the arc while Old Bridge had 13 including three from long distance. The Pats were only 8 of 12 from the line including 3 of 4 in the second half. There were five charges drawn in the game including four by Colonia. Dashon Johnson (4 points) accounted for two of the Pats charges. Old Bridge also had eight second chance points over the final two periods, which was a key in the win. Dave Cole didn't score for Colonia, but hustled and played great defense with four steals to go along with five assists. Old Bridge also won the game with balance as they had seven different players score while Colonia had six. Of those seven Knights that scored, five scored at least six points while Colonia only had two. Gray and Wagner combined to account for 78 percent of the Patriot scoring.
The Patriots opened the game with the first points as Gray stepped to the line at the 7:50 mark, and made two free throws. Then, after a turnover by Old Bridge at the 7:45 mark, Wagner netted a three pointer from near the top of the key for a 5-0 lead at the 7:12 mark. Following a three by Chavarria from the left side off an inbounds at the 6:50 mark, Wagner struck again for a trey from the left wing at the 6:32 mark for an 8-3 lead. Gray had a chance to make it a seven point lead after a steal off of Chavarria, but his short jumper off the break wouldn't fall. Cole tried to pick up his teammate by swiping a steal off of Drews, and passed to Wagner for a layup attempt that drew a foul, and produced two free throws at the 5:41 mark for a 10-3 lead. After some difficulty against Colonia's full court pressure, the Knights were able to break it for a three pointer by Drews, but Wagner quickly retaliated with a jumper for a 12-6 lead at the 5:01 mark. Velez scored a layup off a nice pass down low to close the gap to 12-8, and then Aminu scored a layup while being fouled for a conventional three point play, and a 12-11 Colonia lead at the 4:05 mark.
After a 30 second timeout by Colonia, the Pats weren't able to get their perimeter shots to fall. Finally, the visitors from Woodbridge were able to get on the board for the first time in nearly four minutes as Jordan McDaniel (2 points) scored on a layin at the 1:43 mark for a 14-11 lead. Old Bridge would tie the game up at 14-14 though on its next possession as Velez converted a three point play at the 1:22 mark. With the Patriots now over the limit, the Knights went ahead by a point at 15-14 on one of two free throws from Jordan Marrero (a point). Gray would knot the score again at 15-15 with one of two from the charity stripe with 22 seconds left in the first. The score remained that way heading into the second. Wagner led Colonia with 10 points while Velez had five to lead Old Bridge. The Knights ended the first quarter with a 12-5 spurt.
Following a 30 second timeout by Old Bridge at the 7:26 mark of the second, Colonia first forced a turnover thanks to Cole's defense and hustle, and then opened up the period scoring with a floater by Gray that got a fortuitous bounce at the 6:41 mark for a 17-15 lead. The Pats had a chance to go up further, but Wagner's three attempt was blocked by Aminu, who then took the rebound, and went the distance for a layup that knotted the score at 17-17 with 5:23 to go in the half. The Knights had a chance to go ahead, but Wagner drew a charge at the 4:35 mark to keep the game tied. Johnson added a charge of his own at the 4:05 mark to prevent another Old Bridge score. Colonia tried to take advantage of the turnover, but David Krzewinski (a point) blocked a shot attempt by Johnson with about 3:20 to go in the half.
Manny Onukwugha (1 point) had an opportunity to give the Pats the lead at the 2:06 mark, but came up empty on two free throws. Colonia had another chance to go ahead when Wagner set up Aubrey McGlaughlin with a nice feed, but he missed the layup, and Aminu drew an over the back call at the 1:52 mark. The sophomore forward then made both ends of the bonus for a 19-17 lead, but Colonia came back with a three by Wagner (off an assist by Cole) and a jumper Gray for a 22-19 lead at the 1:07 mark Gray then pulled up for another jumper from the same spot on the floor for a 24-19 edge as Old Bridge called for time with 44 seconds to go in the half. Following the timeout, Colonia had another opportunity to go up even more when Cole got a steal along the right baseline with 21 seconds remaining in the half, but he decided by to throw a pass across court to Gray instead of kicking out to Wagner on the left side, and throwing the ball away on a pass across court to Gray in the right corner at the 11 second mark.
Colonia closed the half with a 7-0 run, and won the period by a 9-4 margin. Old Bridge was 5 of 6 from the line in the first half while Colonia was 5 of 8. Wagner ended up with 13 points in the first half while Gray added 9 points to account for 92 percent of the team's offense. The Patriots had three treys all courtesy of Wagner in the first half while Old Bridge had only two. The Knights had a more balanced attack led by Aminu, who scored all four points in the second period for seven in the half. Velez chipped in with his five first quarter points while Chavarria and Drews had three, and Marrero had one. There were two lead changes and three ties in the first half with Colonia holding the biggest lead of the contest at seven.
Chavarria opened up the second half with a drive in the lane for a layup, and a 24-21 lead at the 7:11 mark, but Colonia quickly responded with a layup by Johnson off an entry pass by Gray for a 26-21 lead with 6:56 left in the third. After a lull in the scoring of over two minutes, Cole picked Drews pocket, and then had a nice dish back to Gray for a layup, and a 28-21 lead at the 4:44 mark. Aminu made one of two from the line at the 4:29 mark to narrow the deficit to six, and then Brian Knoth (6 points) sank a three pointer from the top of the key off a pass by Drews for a 28-25 Colonia lead. Gray then got into the paint, and put up a high arching shot for a 30-25 lead at the 3:05 mark before Krzewinski made one of two from the line, and Velez scored on a follow of the missed second free throw for a 30-28 Pats lead with 2:39 left in the third.
After Colonia was called for a traveling violation at the 2:03 mark, Gray drew a charge to give the Patriots the ball back at the 1:49 mark. The visitors couldn't take advantage though, and eventually the Knights set up for a final shot. Drews then drove to the hoop, and drew a foul from Onukwugha as time expired for two free throws that knotted the score at 30-30 heading into the fourth. Old Bridge ended the third with a 9-2 spurt to tie the game up. OBHS began the fourth where it ended the third as Aminu put in a follow of a missed shot for a 32-30 lead at the 7:29 mark. Velez then got an offensive board off an Aminu miss for a layup with 6:51 left for a putback and a 34-30 lead. Old Bridge had a chance to go up by six, but Johnson drew a charge at the 6:30 mark. The Patriots then cashed in the turnover as Gray netted a three from the top of the arc to close the gap to one at 34-33 with about six minutes to play.
Colonia had a couple chances to take the lead back, but failed to score, and then Old Bridge went up by three as Drews found Knoth along the left baseline for a short jumper, and a 36-33 edge with 4:44 to go as the Pats called for time. The Knights defense really worked Colonia for a shot, and appeared to get a stop as Gray missed a three from the top of the key at the 3:59 mark, but the officials cited the home team with a foul. CHS wasn't able to take advantage though, and then Velez hit a foul line extended jumper at the 3:35 mark for a 38-33 lead. On the ropes, the Patriots needed a score, and got one of two from the line by Onukwugha at the 3:13 mark. Velez got the rebound on the missed second free throw, and was fouled, which resulted in two free throws with 3:10 to go for a 40-34 lead. Following a carrying violation by Colonia, Velez was fouled by Onukwugha, who left the game with five personals at the 2:33 mark.
With an opportunity to put the game away, Velez missed the front end of the one and one. Colonia got the rebound, and turned it into a score by Johnson to pull the visitors within four at 40-36. The Patriots then got a steal by Cole, but couldn't convert it as McDaniel's baseline jumper from the left side was long. Old Bridge gave the Pats another chance though and Cole got the ball to Gray, who drew a foul prior to a Knights timeout with 1:42 left. Following the stoppage, Gray went to the line, and made both free throws for a 40-38 OBHS lead. With a chance to run some time off the clock, the Knights rushed and tried to score as Velez dished to Aminu, but the ball went out of bounds. Colonia couldn't convert, however, as Cole was called for traveling with 1:13 to play. Forced to foul, the Patriots fouled Drews, who missed the front end of a one and one giving them another chance. Again they couldn't score as Gray's shot from the left wing was short with 53 seconds remaining in regulation.
Following a timeout by Old Bridge with 41 seconds to go, McDaniel intercepted a pass, and went to the basket for a layup attempt, but Chavarria was there to draw the charge with 35 seconds left. Knoth for the Knights was then fouled with 27 seconds to go, and made one of two at the line, but the ball went out of bounds to Old Bridge. Velez then drew a foul with 20 seconds to go, but missed both free throws. This time, Colonia got the rebound, and pushed the ball down the court for a layin by Mahmoud Seleman with nine seconds remaining for a 41-40 OBHS lead. After a Patriot timeout, CHS fouled Drews with five seconds remaining, and the freshman sank the first, and then made the second after the Patriots tried to ice him with another timeout. Colonia tried to get the ball upcourt for a game tying three, but Wagner lost the handle into the hands of Chavarria, who ran out the clock with the 43-40 Old Bridge win.
With the victory, the Knights improve to 1-2 overall and in the GMC Red while Colonia, which was limited to only 16 points in the second half, remains winless at 0-3.
Old Bridge (1-2)
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