Posts Tagged ‘Chandler Rhoads’

It’s Not the Size of the Dog in the Fight, It’s the Size of the Fight in the Terriers.

Monday, February 18th, 2013
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Boston University point guard Maurice Watson Jr., pushed the ball in transition against New Hampshire Sunday afternoon. Watson posted his first career double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, adding six assists and three steals in the Terriers 68-56 win (Photo by Sam Perkins).

(Boston, MA) – Following Boston University’s 68-56 win over visiting New Hampshire, BU freshman point guard Maurice Watson Jr. – listed at 5’10” on the Terriers’ official roster – was asked just how tall he would like to credit himself with being.

“Five-ten,” said Watson with a mischievous smile, “Five-ten and a half in my sneakers.”

Dwarfed by a surrounding scrum of 5’9” writers, it was immediately apparent that the Lansdowne, Pennsylvania native was taking some serious liberties in assessing his stature.

But Watson and equally diminutive back-court mate D.J. Irving played like seven-footers on Sunday, as the dynamic-duo dominated the game and destroyed the visiting Wildcats on the glass, 43-28. The pint-sized playmakers powered the Terriers, combining for 23 points, 19 rebounds, 12 assists and five steals.

“Those two kids can play – they can play basketball, doesn’t matter if they’re five-whatever or six-four, those two kids can play,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion of the tiny tandem.

A week after notching a career-high 13 assists, Watson posted his first career double-double, pulling down a game and career-high 10 rebounds to go with 13 points. The America East leader in assists at 5.2 per game, Watson dropped six dimes and swiped three steals.

Officially listed at 6’ but checking in much closer to 5’9”, Irving added nine rebounds and ten points, to go with six steals and two steals. After spending his first two years on Comm. Ave., as the Terriers starting point guard, the junior from Chester, Pennsylvania, moved off the ball this year to make room for Watson, but still ranks fifth in the America East in assists.

“Either one of those guys can initiate offense,” said Boston University head coach Joe Jones.

Junior forward Dom Morris continued his stellar junior season, scoring 13 points, shooting 5-of-9 from the floor and a perfect 3-of-3 from the line, to go with eight rebounds and three steals. Red-shirt sophomore forward Malik Thomas added 10 points and freshman sharp-shooter John Papale added nine points, with the duo combining to connect on four of the Terriers seven made three’s.

The Terriers shot 45.5 percent from the floor (25-of-55), 43.8 percent from behind the arc (7-of-16) and 78.6 percent from the line (11-of-16). BU jumped all over New Hampshire in the opening stanza, leading 34-17 at the half and pushed their lead to 20 early in the second, before coasting to the win.

“I thought we played a great half of basketball – I was very pleased with our effort for the first 20 minutes,” said Jones. “In the second half, just like you knew they would, they played with great heart in the second half. For the majority of the second half I thought they outplayed us.”

The Wildcats continued their season-long trend of being unable to put the ball in the bucket, shooting a dismal 37.5 percent from the floor (21-of-56), while bombing their way to a horrifying 4-of-22 (18.2 percent) from downtown.

“In the first half we were just three happy again,” said Herrion with a snap of his fingers, “when we do that, we’re not good.” (more…)

Debacle in Durham

Friday, January 25th, 2013
Hartford forward Nate Sikma embodying the first-half performances of both teams in Thursday night's Debacle in Durham (photo by Sam Perkins).

Hartford forward Nate Sikma captures the first-half performances of both teams in Thursday night’s Debacle in Durham in microcosm (photo by Sam Perkins).

(Durham, New Hampshire) – Temperatures in Durham dipped into the single digits Thursday night with bone-chilling blasts of arctic air bombing down Main Street.

They had nothing on the frigid shooting and ice-cold offense inside Lundholm Gymnasium.

The New Hampshire Wildcats and the University of Hartford Hawks engaged in a reverse-game of HORSE Thursday night; any shot you can miss, I can miss… better. The Hawks eventually emerged as the lesser of two evils in the battle of horrifically bad offenses, pulling away for a 51-40 win.

“In the first half it was not a picturesque game,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion.

In the opening 20 minutes of basketball, neither team could crack 20 points – or hit water if they fell out of a canoe – and the two teams went into the halftime locker rooms deadlocked at 19. Hartford shot just 32 percent from the floor (8-of-25) and 18.2 percent from behind the line (2-of-11) in the first half – and they had the hot hand. New Hampshire shot 31.6 percent from the floor (6-of-19) and 0-for-4 from behind the arc. Each team played stifling defense… when they had the ball in their own hands.

It was a barn-burner alright: If the action was any livelier, a funeral may have broken out on the court.

The difference in the game was that Hartford had a go-to scorer in forward Mark Nwakamma, and New Hampshire didn’t have an answer.

“We have a guy, sitting to my left – Mark Nwakamma – who can take over a lot of games, and we were fortunate to have him on our team tonight and that’s just the bottom line,” said Hartford head coach John Gallagher.

“They went to the kid Nwakamma and we had no answers. He’s really good – he’s really, really good,” said Herrion. “He’s a First Team All-Conference guy. He’s a premier player,” raved Herrion.

The league’s leading scorer in conference games at just over 17 points per contest, Nwakamma was largely held in check in the first half, but broke through the ice in the second, scoring 16 of his game-high 23 points after the intermission, almost single-handedly carrying Hartford to victory. The 6’6” sophomore hit 11-of-20 shots from the floor while showcasing a complete offensive arsenal, scoring on the blocks on an array of low-post moves; off the bounce blowing by overmatched defenders; and in the mid-range game, knocking down jumpers. Nwakamma added eight rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block.

“He can score in, out, up, down. He’s a prolific scorer,” said Gallagher.

“I’ve been in this league, a long time – he’s a really good player,” said Herrion. “He can post you, he’s very quick, he can face [up] 15, 17 feet.”

Hartford shot 41.7 percent from the floor (20-of-48) and 23.5 percent (4-of-17) from behind the arc. Outside of Nwakamma, the rest of the Hawks roster combined to shoot just 32.1 percent (9-of-28) from the floor. New Hampshire managed just 34.9 percent shooting (15-of-43) while missing all 10 of its three-point attempts – the first time in more than 20 years that New Hampshire had failed to hit at least one three in a game.

“We’re obviously not in a good spot, at all,” said Herrion. “Our confidence is shot, there’s no question about it. I think it affects both ends of the floor.” (more…)

Knowing Their Roles: Teamwork, Selfless Play Powers Albany to 68-62 win over New Hampshire.

Thursday, January 17th, 2013
Albany's Jacob Iati passes out of a double team by New Hampshire's Chris Matagrano (33) and Chandler Rhoads (3) in the Great Dane's 68-62 win (Photo by Sam Perkins).

Albany’s Jacob Iati passes out of a double team by New Hampshire’s Chris Matagrano (33) and Chandler Rhoads (3) in the Great Dane’s 68-62 win (Photo by Sam Perkins).

(Durham, NH) – On a moonless night in snow-covered Durham, the New Hampshire Wildcats and Albany Great Danes took to the deadwood floorboards of Lundholm Gymnasium on Wednesday, showcasing their trademarked brands of basketball before the empty seats of the ancient gymnasium.

The Great Danes’ guards got into the lane off the bounce and to the free-throw line en masse, while a roster full of grunt-work grinders and supporting-cast players knew their roles and dominated the dirty work in the trenches.

The Wildcats, meanwhile, shot themselves out of the game in the first half, shot themselves back into it in the second, and shot themselves in the foot in the game’s deciding moments, falling 68-62 at home to their America East Conference rival.

“Anybody that’s watched us all year, we just find ways to win games: no style points – we’re just a resilient group that plays well together,” said Albany head coach Will Brown. “They want to win so badly that it’s straight roll up the sleeves, put on the lunch pail and just find a way [to win].”

“I’m proud that we didn’t quit,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion. “Disappointed – and this has been a real problem with our team this year – with lack of discipline: following scouting reports and game plans with some people has been really inconsistent.”

Albany won the game by relentlessly attacking the hoop and winning the battle in the trenches. The Great Danes out-scored the Wildcats 32-22 in points in the paint and out-rebounded New Hampshire 35-28. Albany turned 12 offensive rebounds into 19 second chance points, while New Hampshire managed just six second chance points. The Great Danes front court quartet of forwards Sam Rowley, Blake Metcalf, Luke Devlin and center John Puk combined for 27 points and 20 rebounds.

“I thought we had a lot of possessions tonight where we defended really well and then missed box-outs,” said Herrion.

The Great Danes also hit 21-of-29 free-throws, while the Wildcats took just 10 shots from the charity stripe on the night, hitting seven.

“Going into the game we told our kids one of our biggest keys defensively was you have to guard these kids without fouling,” said Herrion. “They’re killing people at the free throw line: They’ve outscored their opponents on the year by 116 points from the free throw line.”

Albany senior point guard Mike Black posted his second straight 20-point performance, scoring a game-high 22 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the floor and 7-of-8 shooting from the line, to go along with six rebounds and four assists.

Rowley, a 6’5” man without a true position, posted his third straight double-double after being inserted into the starting lineup three games ago, scoring 10 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. The undersized Aussie forward is averaging a double-double in conference play. (more…)

Catamounts roar into the start of conference play, Wildcats go softly into [cold] night.

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

(Durham, NH) – The University of New Hampshire Wildcats may have been a thorn in the side of the Vermont Catamounts during previous seasons, but in Wednesday night’s America East opener, they offered up little resistance against the defending America East champs.

By tip-off Wednesday night, temperatures in Durham dipped to the low-end of single-digits, inside Ludholm Gymnasium, the Wildcats offense and internal fire weren’t burning much warmer. Vermont rolled to a 64-51 road win in a game that wasn’t as close as the final score.

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Vermont guard Josh Elbaum handles the ball during the Catamounts 64-51 road win over New Hampshire on opening night of America East conference play (Photo by Sam Perkins).

“We executed our defensive game-plan as well as we have all year, as far as doing it for 40 minutes and doing all the little things that we expect of the guys,” said Vermont head coach John Becker.

“They deserved to win, they outplayed us, and it started from the beginning,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion. “First home conference game, against the defending league champions, I thought we’d put up a much better fight: we kind of went away quietly in the second half.”

Vermont used timely shooting, effort and intensity on the glass and defensive end, and a patient and diverse offense to handle the lethargic Wildcats. Nine different players scored for the Catamounts.

“Hopefully we can continue to get production from nine guys so that we can use a nine-man rotation,” said Becker.

Do-everything forward Brian Voelkel keyed Vermont, ripping down 13 rebounds to go with six assists and five points.

“Brian set the tone for us all night – being vocal and his energy on both ends of the court,” said Becker. “He is our leader, and when he does that, guys follow.”

With Forwards Luke Apfeld and Clancy Rugg struggling through ineffective nights, a trio of unusual suspects packed Vermont’s scoring punch in freshman forward Ethan O’Day, first-year transfer Candon Rusin and reserve center Ben Crenca.

O’Day, who had struggled for nearly a month after a hot start to the season, paced Catamounts out of the gate, scoring eight of his 11 points in the early going.

“I thought Ethan O’Day was just all over the offensive glass,” said Becker. (more…)

Past the Point of Moral Victories

Monday, December 17th, 2012

New Hampshire guard Chandler Rhoads is met at the rim by Boston College forward Patrick Heckmann with 30 seconds remaining in regulation and the game tied 52-52. Rhoads got a point-blank look, with Heckmann rotating over late, but could not convert and the Wildcats fell in overtime, 61-59, at Conte Forum (Photo by Sam Perkins).

(Chestnut Hill, MA) — On a cold winter’s eve on the first of December in 1986, beneath dirty-yellow light which drifted down over creaking wooden-bleachers in a mostly empty Lundholm Gymnasium, the University of New Hampshire Wildcats stepped onto the deadwood floorboards over their home court and knocked off the Boston College Eagles.

It has been 26 years since that frigid night in Durham. 11 times since then, the Wildcats and Eagles have taken the hardwood opposite each other. And 11 times the Wildcats have gone home empty-handed. Many times during that stretch New Hampshire was within one Austin Ganly tomahawk-slam, one Tyrece Gibbs step-back three, one Dane DiLiegro floor-burn dive, and one Alvin Abreu heart-and-hustle play, of an upset win.

Late Sunday afternoon, New Hampshire stood 58 seconds away from finally ripping victory away from Boston College. Three times, the Wildcats were within one play of knocking off the Eagles on their home floor at Conte Forum.

“I’ve been doing this a long time and I’m long past moral victories,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion, standing outside the team bus following the Wildcats 61-59 overtime loss – a soft rain turning to snow beneath a rapidly-darkening grey sky; the darkened hulk of Alumni Stadium serving as a back drop for the impromptu interview.

“I thought we had a very good chance of winning if we played our game and executed,” said Herrion, “We had chances; we just didn’t get it done.” (more…)

Season Preview Part 5: X-Men. Examining the X-Factors of the America East

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

When looking ahead and projecting the upcoming season, we always look at the prospective stars of each team. It’s only natural – they are the go-to-guys, the players who take center stage when the lights are the brightest, the ones who can put the team on their backs and carry them when the chips are down.

Yet in the good-enough-on-guts America East, examples of a lone star player single-handedly carrying a team to a championship without big contributions from role players and supporting cast are almost non-existent.

Guys like Jose Juan Barea and Kenny Adeleke, tremendous individual talents who went it alone without cohesive team chemistry and a good supporting cast, never won a thing.

For all of their heroics, Taylor Coppenrath and T.J. Sorrentine had the likes of super role players Grant Anderson, David Hehn and the immortal Germain Mopa-Njila doing the little things. Jamar Wilson had Levi Levine, Lucious Jordan, and Brent Wilson to do the dirty work. Chaz Carr and Billy Collins had Stijn Dhondt setting bone crushing screens and Ryan Butt battling it out in the paint. Marqus Blakely could pass out of the double team to a perfectly positioned Evan Fjeld for easy buckets, or rely on Joey Accaoui to bury the three.

The America East has always been a league where hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard. With fewer true stars and less high-level talent returning to the league than any other time prior in conference history, now more than ever, the conference title may be decided by the supporting cast.

Here is a look at our X-Men: the “X-Factors” – unknown or unproven players flying under the radar who could play a big role in the success or failure of each of the nine America East squads. (more…)

Season Preview Part 4: OBW Preseason America East All-Defensive Team

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

OBW Preseason America East All-Defensive Team
Mike Allison, Maine, Sr., F/C, 6’9” 210: Allison led the America East in blocked shots last season, averaging 2.2 per game. The league hasn’t had a true shot blocker since the Shawn James/Nick Billings/Justin Rowe days, but Allison is about as close as we have seen since. Allison is long, bouncy, and has good timing and instincts, and will spend the season covering the opposition’s best interior scorer.

Tommy Brenton, Stony Brook R-Sr., F, 6’5” 225: Brenton is the reigning conference Defensive Player of the Year (being selected DPOY by both the coaches and OBW). Brenton is big, athletic, and super-physical, and covers the opponent’s best offensive player no matter whether they play on the perimeter or in the post. He ranked among the league leaders in steals and defensive rebounds, and is an all-around tornado on D. After playing last season below 100 percent while recovering from a severe knee injury that required multiple surgeries, Brenton could be even better this year.

Chandler Rhoads, New Hampshire, Sr., G/F, 6’4” 195: Rhoads is a big, physical, feisty guard who plays with consistent energy and will guard the opposition’s best back-court scorer. Rhoads plays with a motor that is second to none and leaves everything he has on the court. He is the linchpin and best defensive player for one of the league’s best defensive teams.

Brett Roseboro, UMBC, R-Jr., C, 6’10” 240: Roseboro has all the tools to make a big impact around the hoop on defense. He has length and great leaping ability for a big man, and has the talent to be a true shot-blocker while also dominating the defensive glass.

Brian Voelkel, Vermont, Jr., 6’6” 230: Voelkel was the anchor of the Catamounts’ defense last season, and arguably the league’s most improved defender. He owns the defensive glass, leading the league in defensive boards, and also disrupts the passing game, using great court vision and quick hands to pick off passes and pick pockets. He’s physical, and may be the best help-defender in the league.

Winning Ugly: Stony Brook stays atop the America East standings despite being out-shot by Wildcats

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

(Durham, NH) – Good teams find a way to win even when they don’t play well.

Visiting Stony Brook lost the turnover battle to host New Hampshire (14 to 12), and the Seawolves were outshot from both the floor (31.1 percent to 36.7) and behind the arc (18.8 percent to 28 percent), while registering only 4 assists to 14 turnovers. Stony Brook leading scorers Bryan Dougher and Dave Coley, along with starting forwards Dallis Joyner and Al Rapier, were all held below their season averages.

Yet, at the final buzzer, the Seawolves stood comfortably in control, with a 57-48 win.

Stony Brook won the game on the defensive end, on the glass, and at the free-throw line. The Seawolves out-rebounded New Hampshire 40-24; the 14th straight game in which the Seawolves have out-rebounded their opponent. Stony Brook made 26 of 33 free-throws to UNH’s 5-7, and scored 10 points off turnovers, compared to New Hampshire’s three.

“We knew it’d be a grind and it was,” said Stony Brook coach Steve Pikiell. “Lucky to get on the bus with a win. Did enough to win; our defense again held a team to under 50 points.”

The Seawolves defense ranks as the league’s best in scoring defense (55.1 ppg) and field goal percent defense (.396) in America East games. In 12 conference games, America East opponents have only broken 60 points against Stony Brook three times.

New Hampshire managed just four offensive rebounds to Stony Brook’s 12, as the Wildcats were outscored 10-3 in second chance points.

“We don’t really have an inside game where we can just throw it to the post, and, consequently, we had nothing on the offensive glass,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion. (more…)

Konan the Barbarian takes Brown’s best shot as UNH emerges with 69-56 win

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

(Providence, RI) — With sophomore forward Pat Konan lying under the hoop, writhing in agony and grabbing his knee, it seemed like déjà vu all over again for the University of New Hampshire.

Last season, the Wildcats lost top scorers Alvin Abreu and Ferg Myrick to knee injuries – Abreu to a torn ACL, Myrick to a ruptured patella tendon – and a once-promising season was rudely interrupted.

When Konan, a sophomore transfer from Liberty and arguably the Wildcats top talent, went down with 4:40 left in the first half and had to be carried off the court by teammates, it looked as if history were repeating itself once again.

But unlike last season with Abreu and Myrick, Konan’s injury wasn’t catastrophic, and he returned in the second half to help propel the Wildcats to a much needed 69-56 road win over Brown University. (more…)

Wildcats fight, fall. UNH show’s new dimension, and promise, in season opening loss to Boston College

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

The University of New Hampshire gave host Boston College a serious

Chandler Rhoads showed a new dimension to his game and sparked the Wildcats (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

scare Monday night, taking the Eagles to the wire before falling 67-64.

“I really liked the way we competed tonight – we played really hard,” said New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion.

The Wildcats played their usual suffocating defense, dominated the glass, and displayed a new dimension on offense: attacking the rim aggressively off the dribble in the half court, and pushing the ball in transition. But the Wildcats fell into some familiar, and troubling, trends on offensive end – wasted possessions, forced and ill-advised three-pointers – which handicapped their comeback attempt.

Chandler Rhoads scored 20 points, Alvin Abreu added 17 – 15 in the second half – and Brian Benson ripped down 12 rebounds, rejected 3 shots and added a monster dunk.

Herrion had been raving about the work Rhoads put in over the offseason to become a scoring threat, and the 6’4” wing did not disappoint. Moved off the ball after spending his first two seasons at the point, Rhoads got out in transition, and was unstoppable at times attacking the hoop, going right by – and at times right through – Eagle defenders.

“Chandler Rhoads is a workhorse,” said Herrion. “He’s like a fullback in football. He’s like Larry Csonka: You just keep handing the ball off, he keeps getting first downs and moving the chains. Really he’s just a tough, tough, kid – his game’s improved tremendously.”
(more…)