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And Greco Lead Junior Bombers
By Greg Machos
Decmeber 14, 2007
SAYREVILLE, NJ--In the second portion of the second annual GMC Hoops Season Opening Tripleheader, the JV squads of both North Brunswick and Sayreville dueled at the Bomb Shelter on the campus of Sayreville War Memorial High School on early Friday evening. Last season, Sayreville's JV went 18-4 overall under former coach, Mike Provenza. The Junior Bombers earned a fourth seed, and home court advantage through the Quarterfinal round of the 2007 East Brunswick/GMC JV Tournament with such wins as the overtime thriller they pulled out against Woodbridge at home on January 22nd. Ultimately, Sayreville's season would end at home on February 19th in the Elite Eight to a fifth seeded Bishop Ahr team that reached the Championship before losing to St. Joseph's. This year, Sayreville has a new coach in former standout player, Samir Sanu, who was a member of the Bombers first and only conference Championship team back in 2000.
Last season, Sanu finished a standout college career at Division III school, William Paterson, and had been coaching both the freshmen and JV teams in their respective summer leagues at Colonia. Over the summer, the Sayreville JV earned the ninth seeded overall at the Colonia JV Summer League, and then in the playoffs defeated eighth seeded Middlesex, top seeded Roselle, and fourth seeded St. Joseph's II to advance to the Championship before losing to second seeded St. Joseph's I. On this day, the Junior Bombers would face a Junior Raiders squad that has several juniors from that were on a third place freshmen team in the 2006 Perth Amboy/GMC Freshmen Tournament. On this day, the story would be turnovers and offensive rebounds as Sayreville jumped out to a 25-9 lead in the first half, and despite only leading 29-18 at the half, were never really threatened in a 56-33 rout. In the game, the Junior Bombers forced North Brunswick to commit 26 turnovers that they cashed in for 21 points while grabbing 20 rebounds, and getting 11 second chance points off of them.
Leading the way was sophomore, Dave Milewski, who has not only grown in size, but has improved significantly from the 8-14 campaign he had with his mates as freshmen last season. The sophomore forward made 7 of 9 shots including 2 of 3 at the foul line for 16 points while also collecting 2 rebounds, 2 steals, an assist, block, and a charge. Chipping in despite limited action was junior Mike Greco, who added 11 points on 4 of 6 shooting including a three pointer, and 2 of 3 from the line while also picking up a rebound and a steal before having to leave the game with an injury in the first half. Starting guard, Tarif Jackson chipped for Saryeville with 7 points on a perfect 3 of 3 from the floor, and 1 of 2 at the line along with three rebounds, three assists, and two steals. Sophmore Nick Pizzi, who essentially put the exclamation point on the rout with back to back threes in about a minutes time to make the score, 43-25 with 2:54 left in the third quarter, ended up with those six points on 2 of 5 shooting from beyond the arc while picking up two rebounds and a steal.
Also getting into the contest for the Junior Bombers was sophomore Koran Klyne, who also made 2 of 6 from the floor as well as his only foul shot for 5 points along with 3 rebounds, 2 steals, and a charge. Varsity reserve, Bob Pizzi started the game, and ended up going one of two from the field and the foul line for 3 points while picking up five rebounds, four assists, and a steal. Jon Diaz came off the bench, and made 1 of 4 shots for two points as well as three steals, two assists, and a rebound while Dee Stevenson made one of three shots for two points and two rebounds. Chris Taite made one of three from the floor for two points as well as three rebounds, two steals, an assist, and a charge while Jarrell Smith made a pair of foul shots for his two points along with a rebound. David Lagdon (0 of 4 FGs and three rebounds), Vince Gordon (0 of 4 FGs, four rebounds, and an assist), John Kraivec (a rebound), and Sherwin Logan (0 of 2 FGs and 3 rebounds) all played, but didn't score. Meanwhile, for North Brunswick, Dan Mangiapane led the way with 2 of 3 shooting from inside the arc, and 2 of 3 more from beyond the arc for a 4 of 6 shooting total as well as 2 of 4 from the foul line for 12 points along with 4 rebounds. Darren Lawrence chipped in with a 3 of 7 effort for 6 points along with 2 rebounds. Mark Gibson also helped out with 6 points on 2 of 4 shooting from the floor as well as a perfect 2 of 2 at the line while swiping three steals, and handing out two assists.
Justin Dipoto helped out in a losing effort with a perfect 2 of 2 from the line for two points along with a rebound and a steal while Maurolino Ignacio made his only three point attempt along with 2 of 4 from the foul line for 5 points along with two assists, a rebound, and a charge. Kevin Totten rounded out the scoring along with Dipoto with a field goal in two attempts for two points, two rebounds, an aassist, and a block. Dan Iverson (0 of 5 FGs and two rebounds), Jason Branch (a rebound), Mike Rosato, and Mike Acquaye (two assists and a steal) all played, but didn't score. For the game, the home team shot 22 of 57 for 38.6 percent including 3 of 10 from three point range for 30 percent. In addition, the Junior Bombers made 9 of 14 foul shots for 64.3 percent. Meanwhile, North Brunswick shot 11 of 30 for 36.7 percent including 3 of 7 from downtown for 42.9 percent. The Junior Raiders also went 8 of 14 at the charity stripe for 57.1 percent. In other statistical areas, Sayreville dominated across the board with edges in rebounds (35-13), offensive boards (20-5), turnovers (16-26), assists (13-7), steals (18-6), blocks (2-1), and charges (3-2). In the first quarter, Sayreville jumped out to a 14-7 lead as the Junior Bombers made 5 of 9 field goals including one of two from beyond the arc, and 3 of 4 from the foul line while North Brunswick only made 2 of 7 shots and 2 of 6 free throws while committing six turnovers. Sayreville only made two miscues.
In the first quarter, the home team actually opened up with a 12-4 run in the first 4:23 of the contest thanks to four early Junior Raider turnovers that were converted into seven points. The run was sparked by a baseline drive from the left side by Rob Pizzi before the Junior Bombers got a pair of free throws by Dave Milewski, who was fouled a layup underneath at the 6:52 mark for a 4-3 lead. Sayreville then increased its lead to four on a conventional three point play as well as a three pointer by Mike Greco at the 6:29 mark. A little more than a minute later, Milewski scored again on a layup as he was fouled off an assist by the elder Pizzi. Following a thirty second Junior Raider timeout at the 5:25 mark, Milewski misfired on the bonus free throw for the conventional three point play, and the score stood at 9-3. Greco then capped the early tear with a three pointer from the top of the key for the eight point lead. North Brunswick would make things closer with three of the last four points to cut the deficit in half to 14-7 going into the second. Mangiapane netted one of two at the line for the 12-4 Bomber lead at the 3:37 mark to start the run. The Junior Raiders missed out on opportunities to make it closer as Lawrence missed a pair of foul shots at the 2:17 mark, and Mangiapane only made one of two with just under a minute left for the 14-7 first quarter score.
After letting NBTHS get to within striking distance at the end of the first period, Sayreville then opened the new frame with an 11-2 tear over a span of 5:27 for a commanding 25-9 lead. Once again it was Rob Pizzi sparking the run with one of two free throws after he got amongst the trees and grabbed an offensive rebound, and was fouled on the follow at the 5:39 mark. Earlier in the period, Pizzi tried to get the Bombers on the board, but was called for an offensive foul at the 7:15 mark so he was getting right into the heart of the action. Greco then swiped a steal, and drove up the left side of the floor for a layup attempt that drew a foul, and resulted in one of two at the line for an 18-7 lead. The Bombers got four more points afterwards as Milewski scored a layup, and then got on the board again with a steal for another layup that capped an 8-0 run. However, following the second layup, he crashed into Greco on his way back down the floor, and the game was stopped as the junior forward was down. Moments later, Greco was able to leave the floor on his own power. North Brunswick would finally get on board with a bucket, but Jackson answered with one of two at the line, and then Smith got a steal for a layup attempt that picked up an intentional foul for two free throws, and the 25-9 lead with 2:33 left before the intermission. After that, the Junior Raiders spent the rest of the contest climbing uphill as the Junior Bombers cruised.
North Brunswick didn't go down without a fight. Well, at least for the time being as the visitors scored seven of the next eleven points for a 29-16 North Brunswick lead as Sanu called time at the 51 second mark. Following the timeout, North Brunswick scored again on a layup to end the half, and make the score, 29-18 at the break. The key stat of the opening half was the 13 Sayreville points off North Brunswick turnovers. In the third quarter, the Junior Raiders got to within twelve points, but couldn't get any closer. Milewski opened the new half with a layup at the 7:15 mark, but Gordon was called for a technical foul for hanging on the rim, and that gave those two points back to North Brunswick in the form of two foul shots by Dipoto for a 31-20 Junior Bomber lead. Getting the side out of bounds, North Brunswick had the ball stolen by Milewski, who went in for a layup that made the score 33-20 at the 7:02 mark. On the next NBTHS possession, Ignacio drew a foul, and made one of two at the line for a 33-21 Sayreville advantage with 6:51 left in the frame. Then, Sayreville began to break the game open with first two straight scores including an offensive rebound and putback by Taite at the 5:10 mark for a 37-21 lead. Then, after North Brunswick crept back to within a dozen, Nick Pizzi put the dagger in the Junior Raiders with back to back threes over a span of about a minute for the 43-25 lead at the 2:54 mark as the Junior Raiders called for time.
North Brunswick then got the final points of the quarter to make it 43-27 going into the fourth, but Sayreville pulled away even more with a 9-2 spurt over the first 3:08 of the final stanza for a commanding 52-29 lead. Highlighting the run were two offensive rebounds that led to a follow for a score, and the foul by Klyne for a three point play and a 46-27 lead at the 7:29 mark, and a layup by Diaz off a lob pass by Jackson at the 4:52 mark to cap the run. Both teams then scored four points each the rest of the way as Sayreville got Sanu his first win as coach, and moved up to 1-0 on the season while North Brunswick dropped to 0-1. Prior to the JV game, Sayreville's freshmen went on an 11-0 tear in the first period to turn a 7-4 deficit into a 15-7 lead, and then outscored North Brunswick by a 22-9 margin in the second for a 37-18 halftime lead to ultimately win, 54-39 in their opener. Then, in the finale, Sayreville's varsity scored 30 points off of thirty North Brunswick turnovers as Ricky Harding went 8 of 17 from the field including 4 of 7 from the line for 22 points to lead Sayreville to a 60-40 victory over the Raiders. See details.
North Brunswick (0-1)
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