December 11, 2006


Nichols ignites Orange


Associated Press/Kevin Rivoli
Syracuse’s Demetris Nichols shoots over Colgate’s Daniel Waddy during the second half Saturday at the Carrier Dome. Nichols scored a game high 28 points to lead Syracuse to a 79-52 win.

AP Sports Writer

SYRACUSE — Demetris Nichols was in a zone that even made Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim marvel.
“Demetris got it going just about as well as anybody I’ve seen,” Boeheim said after Nichols led the Orange past upstate foe Colgate 79-52 Saturday night.
Nichols matched his career high with 28 points — 24 in the second half, which just happened to be two more than Colgate scored as a team.
And he sat out the final seven minutes.
“I can’t really explain it. It’s just a feeling I get, and it’s a great feeling,” said Nichols, who made six straight 3-pointers before missing his final two. “I felt like I couldn’t miss.”
It was the 41st straight win in the series for Syracuse, the longest active mark in Division I-A.
Syracuse (8-2), coming off consecutive losses to two ranked teams — Wichita State and Oklahoma State — struggled defensively in the first half. The Raiders (4-4) were patient, shooting 40 percent, trailed only 35-30 at the break, and could have been within three if not for a dunk at the buzzer by Syracuse’s Terrence Roberts.
Nichols, who had just four points in the period, took control after a vocal halftime address by Boeheim.
“Coach really got on us,” said Nichols, who has scored 20 or more points in five of the last six games. “We needed a boost because the first half we looked pretty dead.”
He did, and in a flurry. The 6-foot-8 Nichols, as tall as any Colgate starter, scored 11 points in a span of less than three minutes, his 3 from left wing giving the Orange a 69-43 lead midway through the second half.
“He was playing like a possessed man,” said Roberts, who had 12 points and eight rebounds. “I saw that look in his eyes.”
So did the Raiders.
“For about 5 or 6 minutes, he was just making everything,” said Kyle Chones, who finished with a career-high 18 points to lead Colgate. “We tried to cover him with screens and stuff, but he was just shooting over our guys.”
“Nichols, at his size, was making some really tough, tough shots,” Colgate coach Emmett Davis said. “He was guarded. It wasn’t like we weren’t guarding him.”
Syracuse finished 13-for-21 on 3-pointers, while the Raiders were just 2-for-16, the second one coming in the final seconds of the game.
Andy Rautins matched his career high with 13 points for the Orange. Eric Devendorf, who had two straight subpar games while suffering from a stomach virus, finished with eight points and six assists in only 13 minutes, and freshman Paul Harris had but two points, on free throws, in the first start of his career.
Alex Woodhouse had nine points for Colgate. Kendall Chones, who was averaging 10.9 points, finished with one, while Jon Simon, averaging 14.3 points, was held to five points on 2-for-11 shooting while guarded mostly by Josh Wright.
“Josh Wright did a great job of defending Jon Simon. That was one of the keys to the game,” Davis said. “He just couldn’t get loose for a shot.”
Colgate missed its first seven shots of the second half and did not get a basket until Kyle Chones converted a three-point play at 14:03.
“It’s always tough coming back (after two losses),” Boeheim said. “We couldn’t get going defensively. We shot the ball well the first half, but defensively didn’t do a good job.
“We started out the second half and got our defense going, we screened better and got Demetris open,” Boeheim said. “He got all good shots, all balanced shots, and when he gets those, he’s going to make them.”
Syracuse continued to struggle on the boards. The Orange outrebounded the smaller Raiders by only one, but were decisively beaten 20-12 on the offensive glass and outscored 34-26 in the paint.
“Our big guys have got to do a better job inside. I guess talking ain’t working,” Boeheim said. “It’s disappointing. We need these next three weeks (before Big East play begins). I think we can get better.”
Texas 76, No. 9 LSU 75, OT: Texas coach Rick Barnes knows he could have pampered his freshmen-laden team with an easy nonconference schedule.
He decided to test it and got a bonus Sunday night — a win over a Top Ten opponent.
A.J. Abrams hit a 3-pointer with 1:03 left in overtime to give Texas the lead and the Longhorns went on to beat No. 9 LSU 76-75 in a thrilling rematch of last season’s NCAA regional final that also went to overtime.
“If you want to run with the big dogs, you’ve got to get off the porch,” Barnes said.
It was the Longhorns’ third consecutive victory over a Top Ten team, and it wasn’t sealed until LSU’s Garrett Temple missed a 3-point attempt from the head of the key and Texas corralled the rebound as the buzzer sounded.
Damion James of Texas (6-2) missed two free throws with 17 seconds left in overtime and his team leading by one, giving the Tigers (5-2) a chance for the win.
After a timeout, LSU didn’t get the ball to Glen Davis, the Tigers’ leading scorer and rebounder, and Temple’s shot bounced off the front of the rim.
Texas starts four freshmen and a sophomore and has nine underclassmen on the roster. The Longhorns played their best game against the toughest opponent they’ve faced so far, with the freshmen who played scoring 65 percent of their points.
Temple hit a 3 with 21 seconds left to make it 68-all, the final tie of regulation and the 13th of the game.
LSU went to a zone defense in the extra period and Abrams’ 3 — his second of the overtime — made it 76-75.
Boston College 73, No. 23 Maryland 62: Jared Dudley had 20 points and 11 rebounds, and Sean Williams added 10 points, 11 rebounds and seven blocked shots to the Eagles (6-2) in the Atlantic Coast Conference opener for both teams.
When Maryland closed within 63-59, BC scored the next six points — the last four a turnaround by Williams and a short jumper by Dudley — to go up 10 with 1:22 to play.
James Gist had 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Terrapins (9-2), who have lost two of three since winning their first eight games this season.



Purple Tigers just miss advancing to dual final

WHITESBORO — Cortland High wrestlers came close to reaching the finals of the Ed Wadas Dual Tournament hosted by Whitesboro High School on Saturday.
After posting three victories to begin the day, the Purple Tigers dropped a tight 33-26 decision to Central Square to be kept out of the title match.
While Watertown went on to win the title by going undefeated in five matches, CHS finished 3-2 on the day after finishing up with a 46-20 loss to Section 3 power South Jefferson.
“We wrestled well but we weren’t ourselves against South Jefferson,” said Coach Dave Darrow, feeling Cortland (8-3 overall) was spent after the loss to Central Square. And South Jefferson was the pre-tournament favorite, only to get knocked off by Watertown.
When Mike Gates won a 13-1 major decision at 112-pounds, one of five victories for the unbeaten Purple Tiger on the day, Cortland trailed Central Square by a 27-26 margin with two weight classes remaining.
Central Square’s James Williams won a wild 17-12 decision over Eric Reisweber at 119, the Purple Tiger who was wrestling up a weight class.
That caused Clint Morse, Cortland’s 125-pounder, to take some risks looking for the pin or technical fall victory needed to pull out the victory. That resulted in Central Square’s Dan Smith closing out the match with a 7-6 decision win.
In pool play, Cortland beat New Hartford 43-26, Vernon-Verona-Sherrill 35-24 and Lowville 53-15 before the loss to Central Square.
“They all wrestled well, we’re just super young,” said Coach Darrow. “If we wrestle teams of seniors and juniors, we’re in trouble.”
Gates was one of three unbeaten Purple Tigers. He opened with three pins before closing out with major decision wins against Central Square and South Jefferson foes. A 19-second win by fall over Josh Ross opened up the CHS win over V-V-S.
Dan Foster was a perfect 5-0 at 160 pounds and Evan Kinney went 4-0 at 125 pounds for the Purple Tigers. Foster had a pin, a technical fall and two major decisions during his solid showing, while Kinney picked up a pair of pins.
At 171 and 189 pounds Coty Cute won his first four matches, including a pin and two technical fall victories, before being beaten against South Jefferson. A.J. Meldrim also had a pair of pins at 140 pounds, Josh Morehouse captured three consecutive victories at 189 pounds and Brandon Fitzgerald went 3-2 at 152 pounds.
CHS is back in action Wednesday, hosting Fulton at 5:30 p.m.



Tourney host Marathon boasts pair of unbeatens

MARATHON — Three local wrestlers posted perfect records after a long day of competition at the Marathon Dual Meet Invitational Saturday.
Devon Brown and Tyler Malmberg each posted 5-0 records for the host Olympians, while Dryden High grappler Tony Clarke was a perfect 4-0 in individual matches.
Team-wise, it was Rush-Henrietta from Section 5 that was perfect on the day with a solid 5-0 mark. Watertown IHC from Section 3 went 4-1, while the top Section 4 team records were posted by Chenango Valley and Harpursville as each went 3-2. Marathon posted a 2-3 record while Dryden was 0-4. Maine-Endwell rounded out the seven-team field with a 0-5 record.
Brown spent little time on the mat as he recorded three pins in a total of 68 seconds to go with two forfeits.
The sophomore set a new school record by sticking Trace Florence of Harpursville in a lightning-quick five seconds. The previous record for a pin for the Olympians was eight seconds. Verification is being done to see if that five-second pin is a New York State record.
Malmberg also posted three pins among his five-win day, but his biggest win of the day came when Malmberg posted a 7-4 decision over two-time state finalist Ken Kampnich from Watertown IHC. Kampnich was the Division 2 state runner-up the past two seasons.
Other solid efforts by Marathon wrestlers including 4-1 records posted by Kasey Bush, Mikhail Brown and Frank Davis.
CLARKE  HAD TWO pins and two forfeits on his perfect day. Anthony Jerome and Bryon Pyle each recorded 4-1 marks against some very tough competition with Rex Hollenbeck posting a 2-2 record.
Jerome lost a 1-0 decision to Tony Doldo from Watertown IHC when Doldo, another highly-regarded Section III competitior, recorded an escape late in the third period.
Hollenbeck lost to Derek Brennan from IHC and Ben Johnstone of Rush-Henrietta.
“While the team did not fare very well, I am very optimistic about the individual performances that did take place,” said Dryden coach Larry Hinkle. “Currently, we are forfeiting four weight classes, but, after this week, we will have a full line-up, except at 140 pounds. That means we won’t be giving up 24 points each match.”
Complete team records, scores and match summaries for Marathon and Dryden appeared below.
Both Marathon and Dryden will have tough home Interscholastic Athletic Conference matches Wednesday. The Olympians host Newark Valley at the high school when the Purple Lions entertain top-ranked Waverly. Both matches start at 7 p.m.