Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Villanova 51, Fairfield 45

The women's basketball team dropped their first game of the season Wednesday losing to Villanova on the road. The loss drops the Stags' record to 5-1 overall while improves the Wildcats to 5-1 as well.

It was a tough night offensively for the Stags as they shot only 37.7 percent from the floor and only 14.3 percent from beyond the arc. They also committed 16 turnovers while only forcing eight.

Baendu Lowenthal '09 was Fairfield's leading scorer with 14 points. However, she was only seven of 18 from the floor. Sabra Wrice '08, the Stags' leading scorer, had only seven points on three of 14 shooting and was only one of eight from beyond thee arc.

Megan Caskin '09 played all 40 minutes and despite not scoring any points, picked up six assists to one turnover along with six rebounds.

The Stags lost despite out rebounding Villanova 41-30 and limiting the Wildcats to only 27 percent three-point shooting.

The game was close throughout and Fairfield help a one point advantage early in the first second half, but when Villanova pulled ahead, the Stags could not catch up.

-Chris Simmons

Villanova 21, Fairfield 20 Halftime

The women's team has kept the score close despite turning the ball over eight times compared to Villanova's three.

- The Stags have out shot the Wildcats 39.1% to 29.6%
- The Stags have out rebounded the Wildcats 19 to 15
- Baendu Lowenthal '09 has paced Fairfield with six points along with four rebounds.
- Sabra Wrice '08 has scored five points.

-Chris Simmons

Sunday, November 18, 2007

79-73 Stags; 44.1 in the 2nd

  • Ryon Howard fakes a three, and drives it with no pressure for an easy two. FU will take that in a heartbeat. Stags ball, and SHU calls a T.O. to talk things over.
  • Nero goes one-for-two, and the Stags maintain that lead. The y ned a stop on D to ice the game.
  • Nero goes to the line - not a great sight if you're wearing red right now.
  • Nero gets the ball in low and his hacked hard as he tries to put it in. A little surprising that the didn't foul right away when Han was trying to run the clock out. The coaches were screaming for backcourt pressure and got nothing.
  • Stags ball with an in-bound from deep in their own territory. SHU puts on a full court press, but the Stags do a textbook job of breaking it. Here's a shot to ice the game.

- K.C.

78-71 Stags; 1:56 in the 2nd

  • Hardy misses a three, but Ryon Howard works hard underneath and gets a tip-in. They certainly are not giving up just yet. 1:56 to play
  • 78-69 FU after Han hits both from the line. 2:00 to play.
  • Shubik gets a little greedy and reaches on Han. The guard heads to the line with a shot to keep the game going the favor of North Benson Rd.
  • Sahan grabs a miss and adds it to the line. "A.J.! Rebound!" yells Cooley. 76-69 FU.
  • Can SHU respond? Odds are they'll look to their outside sharpshooters for a spark. And Big Red, who's right in front of me and not giving up yet.

- K.C.

76-67 FU;2:47 in the 2nd

  • 2:47 to play, and the Stags lead it, 76-67
  • Nero gets a sick pass from Han, and he had no chance of missing. Brooks got greedy and tried to hit him, but it was going in anyway. Nero gets the "and one" and converts with ease - leading to a SHU timeout.
  • Loose ball off of a Hardy miss goes off of a foot. The refs talk it over and give it to the Stags. FU ball.
  • Han goes to the line with a shot at two. He hits both to put FU back in control by six. 73-67 Stags.
  • Foul gets called on the floor on Mehmet Sahan, who looks confused as to the foul and the language in which the ref is speaking. Hmm.
  • Brice Brooks drains a three to pull the Pioneers within four. 71-67 FU.
  • SHU in-bounds on their end with about 4:00 to play. Let's se ewhat goes down.
  • And the dance team is done. Finally. No, they're great. I swear.

- Keith Connors

71-65 FU; 3:56 in the 2nd

  • Dance team is up, 3:56 to play
  • Ryon Howard goes up strong, but his shot in met by Anthony Johnson's fat hand. Ouch. The ball flies out of bounds and the Stags get a cheer from the crowd.
  • Howard adds the freebie, and it's a six-point game. 71-65 FU.
  • Ryon Howard makes amends by grabbing his own miss and putting it in with the foul. Here's his chance to keep making this a tight one.
  • After a hold gets called on Ryon Howard, Han goes to the line as Sacred Heart is over the limit. Han hits both of them and puts the Stags up nine. 71-62 FU.
  • After two Anthony Johnson easy misses, SHU turns it over and gives Jon Han a textbook drive and lay-in on the other end. He went baseline to baseline. 69-62 Stags.
  • Chauncey Hardy misses an NBA-range desperation three at the buzzer. Whammy.
  • The scene: with Sacred Heart rallying, the Stags need to show some poise and get a much needed defensive stop. 5:30 to play, and Fairfield holds a 67-62 lead. Hold on to your butts.
  • The Big Red just bagged a Stag. Whatever that means.

- Keith Connors

67-62 FU; 5:46 in the 2nd

  • SHU timeout to get the troops rallied.
  • FU ball. Somehow. It happened way to fast - I swear.
  • Mamadou misses in a rare event. Yorel grabs the board, but the Stags turn it over anyway.
  • FU gets the ball back, and the Pioneers are one away from a one-and-one if they keep fouling.
  • Chauncey Hardy nails a great look after an Anthony Johnson miss. 67-62 FU.

- Keith Connors

67-60 FU; 7:28 in the 2nd

  • SHU offensive foul on the other end, and Fairfield is now in the one-and-one. This could potentially hinder that Pioneer comeback. We'll go back down to the other end.
  • Just when we agreed, Warren Edney drains a three at the buzzer in front of the White Sea and the crowd goes wild. Holy cow. 67-60 FU.
  • "Oh my God, it's louder than I've ever heard in here," - Tom Cleary.
  • Mehmet makes a shot over Mamadou - who would've thought that would happen. SHU pulls within four. 64-60 FU.
  • Shubik adds the free throw for the three-point play. 64-58 FU.
  • Just when it looks like Fairfield is going to pull away, Drew Shubik drives the lane, makes the shot AND the foul. With their outside shooting so streaky, you never know when a "Big Red" big drive is coming. We'll see.
  • Han heaves a pass to Edney - who was not even remotely close to paying attention. Luckily, the ball caught him, and the Stags take it down. FU ball.
  • Han grabs both freebies, and the Stags keep it coming. 64-53 FU.
  • Han cuts hard with the left, drives the lane, and its fouled by Ryon Howard on the way. Han goes to the charity stripe for a shot at two more.
  • Anthony Johnson misses a dunk and whiffs. Luckily, they get the ball back. It's okay. We're gonna pick it up.
  • Three for Ryon Howard and the Pioneers just won't go away. 62-53 Fairfield.
  • Twelve-point lead for Fairfield right now with 11:30 to play. That's their biggest lead of the night. Can it hold? No clue.

- Keith Connors

62-50 FU; 11:36 in the 2nd

  • Media T.O.: 11:36 with the Stags up 62-50
  • Chauncey Hardy, a great player and a competitor from the looks of things, gets a shot with Han in his face. To respond, Han takes him to the hoop and drives. The lay-in goes in and the Stags get another quick one.
  • Edney almost hits a dunk, and Anthony Johnson tumbles over the stands and gets back up and yells. Much to the delight on the White Sea. Wow.
  • Mamadou tries to guard Shubik as he drives, and he gets called for a block. Looks like Cooley is having Mamadou as his shadow all night - he's known for his pesky, in-your-face D. So far, not a whole lot out of Shubik tonight.
  • The 'Dou hits both shots and keeps the Stags express rollin' along. OK, that was pushing it. 60-48 Stags.
  • Hardy passes the ball away, and the Stags breakaway with Mamadou on the other end. He's fouled hard as he goes in for the dunk. They had to. Diakhate goes to the line.
  • After an SHU three to answer, Warren Edney wants to get in on all the fun. And that he does. Edney gets the first trey of his Stag career and puts Fairfield up ten points. Nice. 58-48 FU.
  • Mamadou gets a cross perimeter pass, and drains a wide-open three. He's NEVER missed a three. Granted, he's had three shots. 55-45 FU.
  • On the other end, Chauncey Hardey gets a leaner and keeps the Pioneers close. 55-45
  • Peanut dunk. On the putback. Thanks.
  • Potter misses a mid-range jumper, and the Stags push. Unfortunately, they push it out of bounds and almost hit me. That's three times in this game
  • Attendence: 5,018. Holy moly. And, for once, it actually looks about right and sounds right too. Can we play them every game?
  • Mamadou and Evanovich backs in. Big fan favorites.
  • Potter goes up strong, and is met by Nero. While it was fun while it lasted, the refs get involved and call a hack on Gregger. Potter to the line to shoot a pair.
  • SHU ball to start off of the media timeout.

- Keith Connors

50-41 Stags; 15:57 in the 2nd

  • Hawkins gets caught with his hand in the ol' cookie jar, and the refs call an over the back. 50-41 FU with 15:57 to play.
  • Han gets the "home run" look downcourt on the in-bound pass and gets it to go. Nice lay-up from the Brooklyn native. 50-41 Stags.
  • Nero shows some sick range by burying a wide-open three. That's a reason why that guy was preseason All-MAAC. SHU gets it back with a lay-in, and then the Stags are called for an offensive foul on the in-bound.
  • Liam Potter's balls goes every which way, then finally falls. Then, Jon Han goes coast to coast and hits the fade away jumper off the glass. 45-39 FU.
  • Yorel misses one, but makes up for it by hitting one. One outta two ain't bad. 43-37 FU.
  • Another SHU turnover leads to an Anthony Johnson miss hook in the lane/Yorel Hawkins attempt at a put-back. He gets hacked in the process and goes to the line. Yorel. Shooting two. Number 4. Sorry, enough Bob Sheppard.
  • Anthony tries to go up fstrong against Brooks but is turned away. The Pioneers miss a chance for transition point and turn it over. Moments later, Nero gets called for an offensive. Cooley to Nero "Wake up".
  • Brice Brooks gets A.J. in an uncomfortable spot and lays it in. 42-37 Stags.
  • Han got greedy and tried to inbound an alley-oop to Anthony Johnson. SHU got greedy and turned it over. So it goes.
  • Stat o' the Half: Corey Hassan was 3-5 from downtown. The Pioneers in total were 5-11, which isn't a terrible ratio. The Stags, by comparison, were 3-10 on pretty good looks. It may come down to which team does better in the second half at perimeter shooting.

- Keith Connors

Halftime @ Harbor Yard: FU 42, SHU 35

  • Halftime at the Harbor: 42-35 Fairfield after Shubik hits both, and keeps the game tight. FU tries for a last second shot, but the buzzer beats them to it. Nice resiliency from the Stags in the half, though. They were down by as much as 14 at one point, and now they hold an improbable seven-point advantage. Wow. We'll see what team comes out after the break: the SHU team that shot the lights out to start, or the Fairfield team that controlled both end of the floor in the second half of the game. Time will tell.
  • Grzeck sighting! Oh, my!
  • Drew Shubik tries to drive, and as he's doubled makes contact with Nero. The refs call Nero on the hold. Shubik goes to the line for a pair.
  • Nero now has a shot to extend the lead even further with the "and on". He misses it, and it's Pioneers ball with 26 seconds on the clock.
  • Down the other end, Nero grabs a miss from Allen and puts it up AND the foul. Nero is just taking over the game right now. What a job. 42-33 SHU.
  • SHU misses again, and the Stags push it. Nero's on the other end and adds the lay-in with ease of f the glass. Chauncey Hardey whiffs on a great shot.
  • Nero gets a great feed, and makes an even better move to put it in in the paint. 38-33 FU.
  • SHU turns the ball over with the shot clock winding down, and Cooley is amped up. FU ball, and they look like they're back in sync. Let's see how the Pioneers respond. Big Red Pioneer doesn't like it, I'll tell you that much.
  • In the one-and-one situation, Mamadou only gets one, but A.J. grabs the board and puts it in to get the job done the hard way. Eh, they'll take it. Who wouldn't? 36-33 FU.
  • A.J. kicks it underneath to Mamadou, who was hiding in transition under the baseline, and is fouled. He'll head to the line for a chance at a pair.
  • Pretty move from Brice Brooks on an inside turnaround keeps the Pioneers on pace. 33-33.
  • Herbie is held from behind, and heads to the line with a chance to give the Stags for their first lead. With the White Sea at his back, Herbie Allen gets both and the Stags are up two. 33-31 FU.
  • FU is looking more cohesive on offense, but can they silence the Pioneers' outside shooting. Specifically, Corey Hassan, who is having a career night. We'll see.
  • My fantasy team is up ten. He has two more guys tomorrow, but I have Maroney and Watson tonight on the Pats. We'll see what goes down.

- Keith Connors

31-31; 3:59 in the 1st

  • Herbie picks the pockey of Corey Hassan - who's finally been bottled up lately. As Herbie drives he is held from behind, and the Pioneers are called for the foul. Oh, boy. Business is picking up here at the Harbor.
  • Mamadou hits the three and ties the ball game up. And the crowd goes wild. 31-31 all.
  • Ryan Litke walks on a fake pass - so SHU turns the ball over. Here's the Stags chance to pull it tight. FU ball.
  • Diakhate adds both, and keeps the Stags on pace. 31-28 SHU.
  • Mamadou works hard as hell underneath, despite being the smallest guy by far under there. His great hustle leads to a second chance and a foul. He goes to the line.
  • Drew Shubik - in front of a White Sea yelling and waving towels - hits the first, and then adds the second. Nice job. 31-26 SHU.
  • Mamadou, as tough as they come on D, gets called for a hold. That's the team's seventh, so SHU goes to the line for the one-and-one.
  • Nero, a fantastic foul shooter, adds both to pull the Stags a little closer. 29-26 SHU.
  • Han works the ball down-low to Nero, who begins to drive but is hacked in the process. Nero goes to the line for two shots.
  • Awkward looking shot from Corey Hassan finds its way in, and the Pioneers respond. 29-24 Pioneers.

- Keith Connors

27-24 SHU; 6:16 in the 1st

  • Han grabs a steal, takes it to the house, and gets up and dunks it with authority. Nice ups ofr a big man. What a run. The Stags could use more stops on D though.
  • Han for three? No. Peanut put back? Nah. Yorel grabs the board and puts in it nicely. You bet?
  • Han tries for an oop throw, somehow hits rim, and then somehow Anthony Johnson flies in, grabs the board, and puts it in. 27-20 SHU.
  • Devin Johnson attempts a three on a kick-out from Han, but is blocked by a hussling Drew Shubik. FU retains possession.
  • The White Sea has filled in nicely. SHU still has a slight edge, but it's a great atmosphere at the Harbor right now.
  • Mr. Announcer: "And now, Sacred Heart!" Umm, sure. Could you be a little more specific?

- Keith Connors

27-18 SHU; 7:44 in the 1st

  • Devin Johnson cuts on the baseline and gets the feed from Greg Nero in the post - and puts it in nicely. Great ball movement. 27-18 SHU.
  • Drew Shubik gets a little greedy and tries to get an alley-oop, but misses the mark way high. Justtttt a bit outside. FU ball.
  • Nice effort from Peanut Johnson as he dives for a loose ball and gets a jump-ball call. It should have never even been an issue. But the arrow points towards Big Red and the Pioneeers retain possession.
  • Han goes one-of-two from the charity stripe. 27-16 SHU.
  • Han gets hit as he drives the lane, and the refs blow the whistle on Ryon Howard. Han will go to the line and shoot two.
  • Han hits a nice looking three on a great kick-out from A.J. Chauncey Hardey answers at the other end with a fall-away jumper. 27-15 SHU.
  • Shubik gets a pretty reverse lay-in on the baseline, and the Pioneers answer. 25-12 SHU.
  • Nero drives the lane and gets it. 23-12 SHU.
  • FU needs to do two things: play at their low-key pace, and gets stops on D. That's when the Stags are at their best. Neither of those things are happening, and FU looks terrible.

- Keith Connors

23-10 SHU; 11:34 in the 1st

  • Media T.O. 'Cause we really need it.
  • Lyndon Jordan just misses on a great look for three from the perimeter - but then the Stags turn it over. SHU gives it right back on a Marty flop. Stags ball.
  • #15 - don't know his name - hits a shot undernaeth. 23-10 SHU.
  • Marty drills it, and the Stags desperately need a stop on the other end. 21-10 SHU.
  • Evanovich misses the three, but Marty grabs that rebound and his own miss and finally puts it in. Nice work from the senior underneath. He goes to the line for a chance at the old-fashioned three.

- Keith Connors

21-7 SHU; 13:05 in the 1st

  • Cooley calls a desperate timeout with Han trapped. Not a picture perfect start for Fairfield.
  • Brice Brooks hits a little jumper and gets it to go on a hook shot. 21-7 SHU early at the Harbor.
  • Corey Hassan hits another three. Wow. What a start for this kid. 19-7 SHU in a rout so far.
  • Liam Potter works A.J. under the boards and gets the bounce off the glass to go. Nice job under the board. Then FU turns the ball over. Ouch. 16-7 SHU.
  • Evanovich misses a three, and the loose ball goes out of bounds off of the Stags. SHU ball with a seven-point lead.
  • Corey Hassan answers with a three. 14-7 SHU.
  • Big Mike Evanovich drains a three - just the shot in the arm the Stags need after the timeout. 11-7 SHU.
  • Dapper Cooley watch: well, he was wearing a customized red blazer - but not anymore. It's been that rough of a start for the Stags. Oh, boy.

- Keith Connors

11-4 SHU; 15:48 in the 1st

  • MEDIA timeout: 11-4 SHU
  • After a missed dunk, Warren Edney gets a little anxious and drives too hard. Looks like the refs are going to be calling that all night.
  • Chauncey Hardey drains the three. The Pioneers' outside shooters are hitting their open shots. 11-4 SHU.
  • Yorel Hawkins gets called on the drive - and Cooley is not pleased with the call. Must be something in the water here at Harbor Yard. 8-4 SHU @ 16:55.
  • Charge on Han on the baseline, and the refs are making sure this one doesn't get too rough too fast. SHU ball.
  • Anthony Johnson gets an oop and hits in with authority. (I never thought I'd say this at a Harbor Yard game) and the crowd goes wild. SHU answers with a three from Corey Hassan. 8-4 SHU.
  • Liam Potter, the Pioneers' big 7'0 footer, gets called on a walk. Naughty, naughty. Stags ball.
  • A.J. and Nero do a little back door cut and pass to get the Stags on the board. Nice look. 5-2 SHU.
  • Brooks drills both from the charity stripe - and the Pioneers have come out strong. 5-0 SHU.
  • Brice Brooks goes up strong on a post-up and is met by Nero. The refs think it's a little too much contact and call the foul.
  • Chauncey Hardey getas a pretty kick-out pass and drills the 3. 3-0 SHU.
  • Warren Edney steps on the line on a dish inside and the Stags turn it over.
  • Gettin' Tipsy: Anthony Johnson vs. Liam Potter. A.J. is down in size, but he looks ready to roll tonight. Advantage: Stags. FU ball to start off here at Harbor Yard.
  • Gotta love the Red Sea putting up the Mirror during SHU's lineup.
  • Big Red was up on the table just now. Wow. Now that's intensity.
  • The pre-game Crowd Advantage definitely goes to the Sacred Heart reds. Fairfield's showing as upped a lot since the women's game, but the Pioneers are definitely outnumbering right now. Either way, it'll be a lively crowd tonight - should be a fun one for everybody here.
  • Bill Gonillo tribute before the game - very moving, and a very nice man. He will be missed.

- Keith Connors

The Fight for Fairfield: FU/SHU

Welcome to Mirror Online's coverage of tonight's game between the Sacred Heart Pioneers (0-3) and your Fairfield Stags. Tonight marks the first time in program history that the Stags have taken on Sacred Heart. We're expecting a full, raucous crowd for the men's game here - something we haven't been able to see since last season's finale in the MAAC tournament against Loyola (Md.)

Here's a quick look:

  • The Stags got their first win of the season last Thursday nigh in D.C. against American University. After trailing by six at half, the Stags went on a 14-o run to start the second half. Greg Nero led the way with 15 points - with 13 of those coming in a dominant second half performance. Head Coach Ed Cooley stressed the importance of Nero and forward Anthony Johnson to the team's success this season. Jon Han also tallied 15 in the W.
  • The last time we saw Fairfield on the court at Harbor Yard - Jon Han had a bloody nose, the Stags were undisciplined, Cooley was about to have an anyurism and the refs' calls, and Holy Cross came out on top. Has FU learned its lesson? Time will tell.
  • Sacred Heart is 0-3, with their most recent loss a 70-55 game against the University of Hrtford. The team opens it's season with five of their first six games on the road. It's a significant stat in that the team was 11-2 last season on its home court, the Pitt Center on campus.
  • Harbor Yard is expecting a near sellout tonight, we've got both pep bands, both mascots, t-shirts and towels. It's about as cool as an atmosphere as we've seen in a long time at Harbor Yard. Cooley may say it's just another game on the schedule, but the community is excited and the players on both sides will feel off of it.
  • FU: White. SHU: Red. That's the tale of the tape tonight - on the court and in the stands.
  • Stag vs. Big Red Showdown? Doubtful. But the two will definitely butt heads on the court.
  • Pre-game Meal: tacos and Mexicali rice. Ole. Although I'm a little nervous about the after affects.
Starting Lineups:
  • SHU: F #4 Corey Hassan; F #44 Brice Brooks; C #32 Liam Potter; G #50 Drew Shubik; G #22 Chauncey Hardey; head coach Dave Bike (30th season)
  • FU: F #22 Warren Edney; F #44 Greg Nero; C #32 Anthony Johnson; G #3 Jon Han; G #4 Yorel Hawkins; head coach Ed Cooley (second season)
More to come

- K.C.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Final from the Harbor: Holy Cross 67, Fairfield 54

  • Final from the Harbor: Herbie Allen's jumper misses, Adam May grabs the board, and that's all she wrote. Jon Han and Anthony Johnson walk off the court to end the game without even shaking hands. A definite intense game. Interesting all around.
  • Cooley calls off the horses and tells them not to foul. Cunningham finally gets fouled and goes to the line. He hits both shots to send the lead to 13. 67-54 HC.
  • Cunningham, whose having a great night, hits both shots and ices the game. 65-54 HC.
  • Evanovich gets a turnaround, as the Stags try to keep it close. They foul down nine with :45.6 to go. Colin Cunningham goes to the line.
  • Doherty converts both shots. 63-52 HC.
  • After a foul on one end, Mamadou gives a little "behind the ref's back" elbow and the Holy Cross bench is incensed. A dirty player by nature, I'm hardly surprised.
  • Allen gets a quick shot after a steal. The lead in nine. 61-52 HC.
  • Edney tries for a three, but was on the line. 61-50 HC.
  • Quick foul on Hawkins - his third - after an inbound from the Holy Cross bench. Doherty goes to the line to ice the game. Doherty nails both. 61-48 HC.
  • Yorel Hawkins takes it hard and gets fouled - he nearly got the roll in too. Hawkins goes to the line to give FU at least a chance. He adds both to the tally. 59-48 HC.
  • 59-46 HC, 2:22 to go.
  • Mamadou came in for D, but instead gets called for a foul. Not good. Colin Cunningham will shoot two on the gimme. He gets both shots. HC is up, 57-46 - then gets a steal and then a put in on the other side of the floor.
  • Han whiffs on the shot. HC ball.
  • The Crusaders' get called for a block on the floor - sending Jon Han to the line. Something tells me Han won't be invited to any parties in Worcester anytime soon.
  • Pat Doherty hits both shots from the free throw line. 55-46 HC.
  • 53-46 HC with the Crusaders going to the line. In the mean time, how 'bout that dance team?
  • Herbie goes in hard after a rebound and gets called for a loose ball foul. That'll send Holy Cross to the line for two shots - not exactly what Cooley drew up.
  • 3:57 to play. Plenty of time. Plenty of things can happen.

- K.C.

53-46 HC; 3:57 in the 2nd

  • Timeout FU to draw up a play.
  • Kyle Cruze hits both shots - nothing but net- and the Crusaders make it a seven-point game. 53-46 HC.
  • Hawkins misses a three - on the other side, Han gets called on a hack in what seemed to be a near block. There was some contact, though, and the refs called it.
  • A little miscommunication causes HC to turn it over again. The Stags need to start taking advantage if they want to have a shot. The clock is ticking...

- K.C.

51-46 HC; 5:02 in the 2nd

  • H.C. timeout after a few misses on tip-ins on the offensive end.
  • Holy Cross misses a pass in the post and turns it over. Let's see if the Stags take advantage.
  • Anthony Johnson adjusts extremely well to a Jon Han oop pass, and lays it in off the glass. 51-46 HC.
  • Cunningham drives, gets stopped, and then gets called on the walk. Stags ball - and they need points bad.
  • Holy Cross retains possession on a loose ball/errant pass.
  • Three chances are not enough - as the Stags can't find away to put it in the hoop. HC ball.
  • Cunningham adds the extra on the old-fashioned three point play. 51-44 HC.
  • Here's the scoop: it's a six - possible seven-point game with 7:23 to play. It's aggressive, it's physical, and right now the Stags are looking to find an extra spark to pull them closer. Either way, they're showing a lot of heart. A game like this last year, though, they normally lost. Is 2007-08 any different?

- K.C.

50-44 HC; 7:23 in the 2nd

  • Colin Cunningham cuts across the point and hits a baby hook - and gets called for the hack in the process. Nice job from Cunningham - who's amped up. He'll go the line for another one.
  • Eric Meister, the lone center left for the Purple Boys, is on the line. He misses the one-and-one, FU Ball.
  • Nero gets anxious going up for a board and gets called for an "over the back". They're in a one-and-one, and we'll go to the other side for some shots.
  • With a big lineup and a big man down from the other team, the Stags might be smelling blood - literally.
  • Offensive foul called on 00 Tim Clifford - and he's gone. The best big man from Holy Cross has checked out - and the crowd is lovin' it. "Na, Na,Na" chants all around.
  • Loud crowd at the Harbor.. just like Gene Doris dreamed it up.

- K.C.

48-44 HC; 9:02 in the 2nd

  • A stop after a score - which has rarely happened for FU - would be big right here to keep Uncle Mo on their side.
  • Marty gets a "one more" pass and drains it on a good possession for the Stags. They moved the ball great on the perimeter. 48-44 HC.
  • Herbie Allen gets a great feed from Han and gets the ball underneath to go. 48-42 Stags.
  • Ref calls a no-basket as Eric Meister tried to go up with the clock about to expire. Tough one - it really could have gone either way. But with the crowd in a very Bronx mood, they go with the Stags.
  • Han's first pass back on the court? An oop to Anthony Johnson to get the crowd rocking. I'm pretty sure he stared down somebody too. BUT, the Crusaders answer with a hook shot from the post. 48-40 HC.
  • Han's jersey is toast thanks to the blood. Now, he's rocking a retro Danny Ogelsby #13 jersey. Hey, I hear those things go on EBay for a pretty penny - no joke.

- K.C.

46-38 HC; 11:52 in the 2nd

  • Han comes back on the floor - gets a HUGE roar from the crowd. Not quite Jordan, or that dude from the Knicks, but it's good to see that Jon Han was okay.
  • After a Warren Edney miss from mid-range @ the buzzer, the ball goes off of Holy Cross on the floor. 46-38 HC.
  • Just like that, Crusaders slow the charge.
  • Nero just taps Cunningham, and somehow gets called for the foul. I'd think the refs are worried this game will get out of hand and want to call a lot to make sure it doesn't get bad. Cunningham knocks down all three. 47-38 HC.
  • Cooley to Evanovich: "Step up and make a shot for me." thanks to Chris Simmons for relaying that to me.
  • On the line to pull the Stags closer, Allen drains it. He's coming up big in missed time for Jon Han. 43-38 HC.
  • Evanovich gets a nice feed from Allen, who then gives a pretty feed to Nero underneath for a reverse on the base line. Great look from Nero. Moments later, it's Herbie Allen who gets a lay-in AND the foul. Huge turn of evens. 43-37 H
  • Offensive foul called on Eric Meister - it's getting a little physical out there. Interesting to see where it goes from here..
  • Evanovich tries to pull up in the lane, but trips a little and gets called for the walk. Another blown opportunity for the Stags to get close. HC ball.
  • WHAT?!? Nero misses a three, and Herbie Allen gets the rebound and put back. Are you serious? Eh, they'll take it. In other news.. Holy Cross turns the ball over. 43-33 HC.
  • Colin Cunningham gets a nice kick-out and drains it from the top fo the arc. On the other end, the Stags turn the ball over. Luckily, HC felt bad and gave it right back. Stag ball. 43-31 HC.
  • A flagrant foul on Marty leads to a pair of shots for Adam May, who goes one-for-two on the line. 40-31 HC. They retain possession.

- K.C.

39-31 HC; 15:23 in the 2nd

  • Media timeout - as Marty O'Sullivan gets called for a hold on the court. This is about as insane, crazy game as I've seen in a long time. If we were in Argentina, and this was soccer, we'd all be dead.
  • Evanovich misses a three, but Marty O'Sullivan gets a put-back. 39-31 HC.
  • 00 Clifford gets called on a hold - possibly a make-up call on a questionable defensive. Stags ball.
  • BACK to the game: Holy Cross gets a technical and goes to the line. Pat Doherty hits one out of two, but the team does not retain possession. 39-29 HC.
  • "We Will Rock You" comes on to tame the crowd while they clean up the court from blood. Good call.
  • A bloody Han and the trainer run off court - it looked like Han was trying to demonstrate how hard that elbow was that hit him. Looked like he almost went after the player from Holy Cross and got a little physical/verbal with him. Anywho, he said the magic word and got the call.
  • The refs get boo'ed, as this is about as rowdy as I've ever seen Habor Yard.
  • In fairness of the mistake, they call an offensive foul on Han - he did not like that one bit. He got up bleeding pretty hard and went to the ref to demonstrate it and was given a "technical foul". He's bleeding pretty bad.
  • Han drives hard off of a near miss (and running over of our #$%) on the foul line, and..... wait... no, it's an offensive foul on Han. Interesting turnaround right there. The refs weren't really talking a whole lot.

- K.C.

38-29 HC; 16:35 in the 2nd

  • Devin Johnson gets fouled hard on a drive after a good pump-fake. Rare to see D.J. show a lot of aggressiveness on the floor. He misses long on the first, then botches the second shot but Greg Nero gets dirty and dives for the miss - great effort from Greg.
  • 00 Clifford gets a goaltending call on a nice look inside. They move the ball extremely well on the perimeter. 38-29 HC.
  • HC o-reb. What else is new.
  • Anthony Johnson gets a little too anxious and gets called on the offensive. He literally took off from the foul line - not small enough to get away with that. Naughty, naughty. HC ball.
  • Stags go with a half-court trap on the in-bound. Clifford misses a turnaround from ten feet, but the Crusaders pull down the board. On the second chance, Devin Johnson gets a great read on the play and gets a jump ball called. GREAT defensive awareness. Stag Ball.

- K.C

36-29 HC; i19:25 n the 2nd

  • Timeout. Holy Cross
  • Vander Bean misses, and on the other end Anthony Johnson gets a tip in off of a Nero miss and gets Fairfield off to the right start. Willard is pissed on the other bench and calls a quick full timeout after a lacksadaisical effort on D.
  • HC ball to start.
  • On the floor to start the half, Cooley decides to go with the original starting five. Yorel continues to get extensive playing time - given his first half, that's with good cause.
  • Stat City: Yorel Hawkins leads the Stags with 9. Holy Cross' Alex Vander Baan has 11 points and 3 rebs. Mike Evanovich, coming off of a 20-point effort, has 3 points and an assist.
  • Joe Cefoli, a former roomate, gets his game on at halftime. The one and only Cefoli has trouble lacing up the shoes, and gets his ball jacked by some kid named Colin. Sweet. Anyway, he did nicely. Props to 232 son.
  • Clearly Cleary Trivia: Holy Cross is one of four teams the Stags play in 2007-08 that are coming off of a 20-win campaign. The other three? Georgetown (duh!), Niagara (okay, maybe), and Siena (wow, I totally fogot). And there ya have it folks.

- K.C..

Halftime @ Harbor Yard: HC 36, FU 27

  • Halftime, Harbor Syle: All in all, a little sloppy on D - and too many second chances for Holy Cross. But it's a nine-point game at half and the Stags will try to pull it together for a big second half.
  • After a nice stop on D, Warren Edney's half court heave falls just short. WOW. That was about as close as you could possibly get.
  • Edney plays a veteran on the line and knocks all three down. More importantly, though, is thta he keeps the Stags close. 36-27 HC.
  • Edney gets knocked into as he shoots the three, and the refs call it and give him a three point opportunity at the line to keep this close. :32.3 to play.
  • Meister gets an easy look on a miss on D. 36-24 HC
  • Full-court trap from Cooley, as he' trying to spark the troops.
  • Hawkins misses on a three, Marty's tip goes out of bounds on him, and the Crusaders get the ball after a contested rebound. HC ball.
  • Vander Baan - or Stifler, as I call him - coverts one-of-two on the free throws. 34-24 HC.
  • Now it's Evanovich that gets called for the hold. The ref has been fair, as the Stags have made some more egregious fouls. That one, though, was a tough call.
  • Yorel makes amends by draining a three off of a cross-zone pass. Nice look on offense for the Stags. 33-24 HC.
  • Doherty hits both shos. 33-21 HC.
  • I'm getting pretty hungry - huge props to the cookies as Harbor Yard.
  • Just as I finish typing that, Hawkins gets called on a hold on the floor. That's the Stags' tenth foul in the half. And HC has been draining free throws.
  • Yorel Hawkins lays it in nicely off of a back door cut. He's showing nice poise. 31-21 HC.
  • Another o-reb for Holy Cross costs the Stags. 31-19 FU off of an easy tip-in on a third chance.

- K.c.

29-19 HC; 3:22 in the 1st

  • Media Timeout after Grzeck steps on the line.
  • Grzeck checks in, and looks like he's got a little posse in the stands. Wow. Not bad for a good 'ol boy from Carolina.
  • Yorel Hawkins shows a little flash of brilliance - after a Marty O'Sullivan turnaround miss, Hawkins goes in for the rebound hard and gets fouled. He really got up there and showed great aggressiveness. Hawkins gets 'em both. Nicely done, sir. 29-19 HC.
  • Lyndon Jordan gets called on a hold - which gives them a 1-and-1. Edney just completely grabbed his jersey on that one. Andrew Beinert gets them both. 28-17 HC.
  • Mamadou gets hacked and goes to the line to keep this game tight. He nails them both. 27-17 HC.
  • Adam May hits a three off of a kick-out pass. Great look. Holy Cross gets its biggest lead of the night at 12. 27-15 HC.
  • Han misses a three off of a screen, as the Stags try to work against that tough zone. Crusders' ball.
  • Back to the foul, Vander Baan adds his second. Four free throws in a matter of mere seconds gives the Crusaders a little cushion. 24-15 HC.
  • Cooley get's T'd up for jawing with the ref, after the first free-throw goes in. Pat Doherty hits both shots and puts HC up 23-15.
  • Mamadou looks like he's playing solid D, but gets called for a hack. For a second, I thought it was on Hawkins. Cooley said "it was awful. He was just trying to get position." It's a damn shame.
  • Evanovich takes it hard off of an in-bound, and gets the foul. Nice look from Herbie on the baseline to see him. Evanovich adds it from the charity stripe and pulls the Stags to five. 20-15 HC.
  • Tom Cleary's Trivia answer is on the way!
  • The Stag is sitting on the side, in a fold-up chair. Alone. I'm not sure why, but ever since they changed costumes he's kind of freaked me out a little. I think he's drunk?

- K.C.

20-12 HC; 7:09 in the 1st

  • Media timeout - and Holy Cross tries to draw up a miracle one-second shot clock play.
  • Mamadou tries to chase down a loose ball after another errant Holy Cross pass - but he's not Michael Johnson. The ball goes out, and Holy Cross retains possession.
  • Han hits a "knuckleball" three after they beat the zone. Nice job by Han, who has yet to really assert himself in this game. 20-12 HC.
  • That 2-3 zone is givig the guard, mostly Devin Johnson, fits.
  • A stags' turnover leads to a practice lay-in for Pat Doherty. What a shame, as they had just got the ball back. 20-9 HC.
  • The Crusaders' get called for an offensive again, as Eric Meister back up in the post a little too hard.
  • HC turns it over again on another offensive foul. I don't have the stats here, but I think they're definitely shooting themselves in the foot almost every other possession. And somehow they're up 9?
  • Evanovich gets a nice look, but proves he's human after a sick game in Winston-Salem by missing the shot. HC ball.
  • With the clock winding down, Han forces the issue and tries to drive into the zone. They get the call - as the refs catch Pat Doherty with his hand in the cookie jar. Stags ball.
  • Marty is Super Man, as he grabs a steal off of a back door feed. The Stags give it right back, and Adam May drains a wide-open shot from down town. 18-9 Holy Cross.
  • Marty takes a Vlade Divac-fall and gets a HUGE hand when 00 Tim Clifford, who reminds me very much of my great uncle, gets called on the offensive. Stags' ball.
  • The Crusaders, are wearing purple. Miss Lippy's car, is green.
  • Willard doesn't like the breakdown on D and calls a timeout.
  • Warren Edney gets a good look from Marty and takes it strong from a lay-in. A good set-up by Han pushing the court on a Crusaders' miss. 15-9 HC.
  • Marty whiffs on the first, but reconciles by nailing the second. 15-7 HC.
  • Dapper Cooley Watch: The blazers gone already, but the style never leaves. White shirt, and a navy, silver striped tie. Classy.
  • Frank Romano.. 50/50 salesman? Eh, why not?

- K.C.

15-6 HC; 11:42 n the 1st

  • Marty O'Sullivan is going to the line.
  • On the second tip in, the Stags give it away one too many times and the Crusaders tip it in. 14-6 HC
  • "Hey, ref! You're awful! You're absolutely awful!" It may get rough at the Garden, or possibly as Wrigley Field or in Philly, but it's pretty bad when you are getting yelled at Harbor Yard.
  • So much for that momentum. Anthony Johnson gets called for an offensive foul tugging underneath.
  • A pretty looking trap from Herbie and A.J. leads to an HC ten-second call and another turnover. Stags ball.
  • A Han turnover on a missed pass through the zone leads to a miss by Cruze and an A.j. rebound. On the other end, Peanut puts it in when Eric Meister (I played PAL Baseball in NJ with a kid with that name!) falls over. Nice dish from Evanovich from the post. 13-6 HC.
  • Mike Evanovich is in. For those who do not know yet, he is the subject of a profile piece in this week's Mirror. Tom Cleary is writing it. You should check that out, man.

- KC

13-4 HC; 14:29 in the 1st

  • AND the jacket is off. Mount Cooley watch is on.
  • After some blown coverage on D when A.J. hit the floor - the Crusaders drain another wide open three. Ouch. 13-4 HC.
  • HC basket quick. Honestly, I missed it. 10-4 Holy Cross.
  • The midget Stag is out. His antlers are awful bendy. I'm sorry, but he just looked awkward.
  • Tom Cleary Trivia of the Night: Holy Cross is one of four teams the Stags play this season that are coming off of a 20-win season. Who - yes, who are the other three? We'll find out after a word from our sponsors.

- K.C.

7-4 Holy Cross; 15:39 in the 1st

  • Anthony Johnson misses an awkward post and Holy Cross gets the ball.
  • After a botched three and an o-reb, Holy Cross' Kyle Cruze drains the three. Oh, those second chances. 7-4 Holy Cross.
  • Cooley seems to be a little angry with Devin - Chris Simmons said he was yelling at him on D, and now in a post-up position he was telling him to be strong and not dish so soon.
  • 4-4 All at 16:40
  • Alex Vander Baan misses, but Colin Cunningham puts in the rebound for an easy lay-in. On the other side, Yorel Hawkins answers with a mid-range jumper. Moments later, 00 Tim Clifford puts it in eaily after blown coverage on D. Pheww.
  • Nero gets called for a hold on the floor - the Stags' second foul.
  • Solid D from FU as Holy Cross turns the ball over again. Looks like they're coming out strong after a tough outing against Wake. Similarly, Holy Cross is showing a nice zone on the other end of the court.
  • Nero gets a dish down-low, and works awfully hard to create separation and gets the bucket. On the other end, Peanut gets a nasty block - but Devin Johnson gets called on a possible fast-break after a turnover. 2-0 Stags.
  • Tim Clifford tries to post-up Greg Nero on the outside of the paint, but gets called for the walk. FU Ball with 18:45.
  • Devin Johnson tries to grab a loose ball, but steps on the out of bounds line and almost into our seats. That was interesting.
  • Han dished to A.J. underneath, who misses an awkward shot.
  • Holy Cross opens up in a 2-3 zone - something that worked well against FU for most of last season.
  • Opening tip pits F Anthony Johnson against Holy Cross' Tim Clifford (00 (double-zero) for those of you scoring at home). Advantage: Peanut.
  • For the Stags: Devin Johnson, Greg Nero, Anthony Johnson at foward/center. Yorel Hawkins gets his first career start. And, as usual, we have Jon Han running the point.
  • After a pre-introduction "COOLEY! COOLEY!" chant from the fans, the head coach gives the faithful a little love and hi-fives some people. Nice touch.
  • Decent turn-out from the Red Sea - but then again, it is a home opener. And it's a Tuesday night. Free shirts for 2010 - sweet deal Jeff Seiser!

- K.C.

Hello from the Harbor: FU vs. Holy Cross

Welcome back to another game log of your Fairfield Stags! Tonight, the defending Patriot league champs come to town to take on a Stags team reeling from a tough opening loss to Wake Forest. Holy Cross is coming off of another 20-win season, it's sixth in eight years under head coach Ralph Willard.

Here's a few pre-game notes:
  • Tonight, obviously, is the Stags' home opener. A big bright spot in the team's loss to the Demon Deacons was the play of forward Mike Evanovich. After waiting a year to play, Evanovich came off the bench on Friday night and looked impressive, totaling a game-high 20 points and 5 steals.
  • Holy Cross took down Hofstra in their opener, downing the pride 61-47. The Crusaders had 10+ point efforts from three different starters (including a game high 18 points from guard Pat Doherty) in the win.
  • Last Time Around: Fairfield had the game in their hands, as the Stags were fouled with only 1.6 seconds on the clock. One shot went in, the other didn't. Holy Cross went onto cruise in overtime and defeated the Stags 67-65. Greg Nero had 23 points and 6 rebounds in a losing effort.
  • Tonight marks the sixth home opener for the Stags @ Harbor Yard.
  • Pre-game Meal: Mama Mia. That was some damn good lasagna.
More to come!

- Keith Connors

Friday, November 9, 2007

Fairfield vs. Wake Forest: A Season Begins..

Here's a quick look at some local previews on tonight's game.

Fairfield at Wake Forest

WHAT — Men's basketball
WHEN — Tonight, 7
WHERE — Joel Coliseum, Winston-Salem, N.C.
LINE — Wake Forest by 12
RECORDS — Season opener for both teams
SKINNY — Stags look to build upon a solid close to last season when they finished 13-19 under rookie coach Ed Cooley. Tonight's probable starting lineup does not include a senior: junior guards Jonathan Han and Herbie Allen and an all-sophomore frontcourt of Anthony Johnson, Devin Johnson, and Greg Nero. Despite the youth, the starting lineup has a great deal of experience. Anthony Johnson (31 starts), Nero (30), and Han (30) all started 30 or more games a year ago while Devin Johnson (19) and Allen (two) were under that mark. It figures to be an emotional night for Wake Forest, as Dino Gaudio will make his coaching debut. Gaudio replaced Skip Prosser, who died on July 26 of apparent heart attack at age 56. Wake Forest, which finished 15-16 last season, lost leading scorer Kyle Visser (17.0 ppg.), but returns four starters: Harvey Hale (8.4 ppg), Ishmael Smith (8.7 ppg), Jamie Skeen (7.5 ppg), and L.D. Williams (8.2 ppg).
UP NEXT — Nov. 13 vs. Holy Cross, 7:30 p.m.

Credit Connecticut Post Staff Writers

GAME NOTES: The Wake Forest Demon Deacons kick off their season and a three- game homestand tonight, as they host the Fairfield Stags in non-league play at Lawrence Joel Coliseum. The Deacons enter the season with a heavy heart, as they lost head coach Skip Prosser to a heart attack in late July. Prosser posted a 126-68 record in six seasons at Wake Forest, where he took the Deacons to five postseason appearances, including four trips to the NCAA Tournament. Taking over for Prosser is longtime friend and assistant Dino Gaudio, who does have some head coaching experience. Gaudio was the head coach at Army and Loyola-Maryland, going 68-124 over seven years, and he inherits a team that is trying to rebound from last year's 15-16 finish. Getting off on the right foot is something the Deacons have done well in recent years, winning their last 13 season-openers. As for Fairfield, it started off its 2006-07 campaign a dismal 3-15, but the team was able to rally behind first- year head coach Ed Cooley, whose young club went a solid 10-4 down the stretch. Four starters are welcomed back from last year's club, so expect the Stags to be competitive from start to finish this season. In terms of the all- time series, Wake Forest owns a 2-0 edge over Fairfield, but the teams haven't met since the 1991-92 season.

For the Stags, their strength this season will come in the low post, where sophomore Anthony Johnson and Greg Nero are expected to make a big impact after a solid rookie campaign. The 6-8 Johnson started all but one game last season and he finished with 8.6 ppg and 4.8 rpg, while Nero finished second on the team with 9.4 ppg in starting all but two games. The duo flashed potential last season and they will be counted to not only score, but rebound as well. At the perimeter, Jonathan Han is welcomed back and he will be asked to do a lot now that leading scorer Mike Van Schaick (15.4 ppg) is no longer around. Han didn't do much scoring (7.7 ppg) last season, but the 6-0 guard showed he was a big time playmaker, dishing out a team-best 4.5 apg. In order for Han to be more effective, he will need to improve on his shot, connecting on just 36.0 percent of his attempts from the field a year ago.

Muck like Fairfield, Wake Forest welcomes back four starters, but they too must find a way to replace their top scorer in Kyle Visser (17.0 ppg). Trying to fill the void left by the 6-10 Visser will be James Johnson, a 6-8 freshmen that can score as well rebound. Jamie Skeen will try to help ease Johnson's transition, as the 6-8 forward returns to his starting spot after posting 7.5 ppg and 4.6 rpg a year ago. On the perimeter, the Deacons return a trio of starters in Ishmael Smith, Harvey Hale and L.D. Williams. Smith is coming off a solid freshman campaign in which he averaged 8.7 ppg and a team-high 6.0 apg, and with a year of experience now under his belt, expect Smith to emerge as a big time player in 2007-08. Williams was another sophomore that is hoping to build off a solid freshman campaign in which he averaged 8.2 ppg while starting all 31 games. As for Hale, he chipped in with 8.4 ppg, but he definitely could stand some improvement on the dismal 35.5 percent he shot from the field last season.

This will certainly be an emotional game for many Wake Forest players and that should work to its advantage. The Deacons, behind their backcourt, should be able to defeat a Fairfield club that isn't quite up to their level, talent wise.

Credit: Sports Network

Friday, November 2, 2007

That's All She Wrote: FU 72, Bport 61

  • FINAL from the Harbor: Fairfield 72, Bridgeport 61
  • Rich Grant misses a desperation three for fun at the end. The horn sounds, and that's all she wrote. Nice second half for FU fromj 15:00 on. Good signs, let's hope.
  • Jimmy O'Sullivan falls over as time is about to expire and turns the ball over. Ouch.
  • Larry Hamilton of Bport (listed as from Stamford, CT) gets a nice hand from the Purple Eagles faithful. Gotta love a local kid.
  • Cooley: "If he does that again, I'm gonna knock the $%# outta him!" Who's he? I hope not Keith Connors
  • This, as far as I know, is the first time Marty and Jimmy have played together - I'm not sure if they were on the same varsity team back @ McQuaid Jesuit in Honeoye Falls.
  • With 1:04 to play, Cooley decides to see some of his "other guys". Joe Bajda, Jimmy O'Sullivan, and Geoff Middelton check in. Sean Grzeck also comes back out.
  • Fellow Mirror writer Chris Simmons said it best, "Dance team? Again?"

- Keith Connors

72-58 FU; 1:04 n the 2nd

  • Nero blocks Littlejohn on an attempted drive. Solid breakdown defense from the big man.
  • With Han very much in his face, Quentin Martin hits a three as he's falling. This kid a pretty nice player. On the flip side, not much else you can do if you're Han. 72-58 Stags.
  • Nero shows some range and some touch by hitting a three from the top of the key. Nice job. "This is the Fairfield we wanted to see," says Tom Cleary. Damn straight. It looks like they've finally found a comfort zone and some rhythm together.
  • Nice grab on the board for Evanovich, who heaves it down court and hits Han. Han drives the lane for the points. 69-55 Stags.
  • On the floor for FU: Han-Herbie-Devin-Nero-Evanovich.

- Keith Connors

67-55 Stags; 3:19 in the 2nd

  • Timeout Bport to quiet "Uncle Mo". 67-55 Stags.
  • Nero gets a transition dunk, and the Stags take their biggest lead of the night (12).
  • Evanovich misses a three, but Nero follows hard and gets a tip-in. Good work by Nero and Peanut underneath - they're really playing significantly better in this half. 65-55 Stags.
  • James hits one. 63-55 FU.
  • Nero misses both, but Anthony Johnson grabs the board and throws it down hard yet again. He's starting to get into his groove in the paint. 63-53 FU.
  • Mantas Armonas is called on a push from behind on Greg Nero - that's Bport's tenth foul with 4:37 to play. Nero visits the charity stripe.
  • Silly turnover on an in-bound by T-Ron costs Bport the ball. FU's got it.
  • Anthony Johnson throws it down hard - you could literally hear that iron from across court. That really got the Bport crowd quiet. 61-53 Stags.
  • Haim hits Stennis on a transition basket, and suddenly Bport has a little momentum on their side. 59-53 Stags.
  • James dunks on a nice look from Haim, but it came a split second to late on a shot clock violation. FU needs to show more poise on defense, they bit on fakes a little too much for my liking.
  • Nero hits 'em both. 59-51 FU.
  • Lex James get a nice look and dunks it easily. On the other end, Nero is called on a foul from the top of the key. He heads to the line. 6:37 to play, 57-51 Stags.
  • Han pulls a "Van Schaick' and nails both free throws. Nice. 57-49 Stags.
  • Han is held on a few fakes in the key, but he does get the job done by getting the call. One-on-one for Han with 7:09 to go.
  • Anthony Johnson gets blocked on h is way up, but the Knights travel in transition and turn it over. FU Ball.
  • Quentin Martin is on the line. He converts one-of-two, and FU looks to push the tempo and run up court. 55-49 Stags.
  • A cheerleader just fell in a pyramid, much to the delight of the crowd here. Come on, folks. It's a scrimmage for them, too... (And are you really that surprised? This is Fairfield.)
  • Media timeout. Again? Who knew?
  • Marty looks like he grabbed a nice board with authority and was fouled in the process, but is instead called for "over the back"

- Keith Connors

55-48 FU; 8:17 in the 2nd

  • Quinten Martin grabs his own board and gives a touch shot underneath that just squeaks by Peanut Johnson and finds a way in. 55-48 Stags.
  • Stags match it. 55-46 FU.
  • Han tries to force it underneath to Peanut in transition, but he gets swiped by Quinten Martin. On the other end, Lex James hits a shot. 53-46 Stags.
  • Anthony Johnson gets called for a little pushing and shoving under the boards. That's his fourth foul. He'll need to work much, much harder this year on staying out of trouble. Especially with Shake gone.
  • With Lyndon running the point, the Stags work a nice play that results in an O'Sullivan to Middleton lay-in. Did you ever think you'd say that a year ago?
  • Lex James, Bridgeport's only interior threat, is fouled by Middleton and hits the shot. He goes to the line. James nails both. 51-44 Stags.
  • Marty gets a tip-in and does a nice job working down-low. 51-41 Stags, who now hold their largest lead of the evening.
  • Bport works it in down-low and gets a foul called on Marty O'Sullivan in the paint. Head coach Mike Ruane seems pleased. Stennis misses the first, then hits the second to make up for it. Bport goes right back to a full court press. 49-41 Stags. (Cooley to Lyndon: "Come on, Lynd. He wanted it more than you."
  • We are just 14 and a half hours away from BC/Bosco in NJ. YES!
  • Celtics are owning. Or so I'm told. But I'm a Nets fan, so who cares. Honestly?

- Keith Connors

49-40 Stags; 11:30 in the 2nd

  • Allen pulls up for a three while in transition and nails it. Nice job of recognizing coverage by Allen. 49-40 FU.
  • Evanovich finally hits a jumper, but is matched by Lex James on the other end. The shooters and beginning to heat up. Just as a type that, Marty hits Nero down low on a nice look. 46-40 FU.
  • T-Ron Christy hits a three from the top of the key and pulls the Purple Knights closer. 42-38 Stags. (Love his name almost as much as Littlejohn)
  • Back-court violation on FU after an errant pass misses Lyndon Jordan. Bport ball.
  • Nero, who was hacked going up in the pain, hits one-of-two from the line and makes it a nine-point lead. Nero has had a much better half offensively thus far. Bridgeport answers though with a Davis jumper. 42-35 FU.
  • Lyndon, Herbie in. Jon Han, Devin Out. More rotations from the skipper.
  • Nero misses a lay-in and comes up awkwardly. He appears to be O.K. though.
  • Evanovich misses another uncontested shot in the corner. This guy couldn't hit a punching bag right now. But he certainly does have a nose for getting open. The potential is there.
  • Quentin Martin gets called for an offensive and is not pleased. Whammy. FU ball.
  • Stags are up against a full-court press. Evanovich has checked back into the game. Nice job by FU breaking the press, but they then throw the ball away in a half-court trap style defense from the Purple Knights.
  • Lex James goes one-of-one from the line. 41-33 Stags.
  • Grzeck gets back in there and continues to get some significant playing time in the scrimmage.

- Keith Connors

41-32 Stags; 15:31 in the 2nd

  • Shooting foul down-low on Fairfield on Lex James. Stags caught a break - James was wide-open underneath and Haim simply missed him and took a shot instead. James heads to the line to shoot a pair.
  • Han fakes a drive in transition, then kicks it out to a wide-open Herbie Allen. Allen drains the three and is excited. 41-32 Stags.
  • Devin hits a runner and is fouled. He misses the FT. FU has not shot well from the line in the few trips they've been there. 38-32 Stags.
  • Get the Grub: Merritt Canteen! Check it out if your a burgers fan and you live in the Fairfield area. Well worth the trip.

- Keith Connors

36-32 Stags; 16:35 in the 2nd

  • Loose ball foul on the Purp-s and we've got ourselves a stoppage of play.
  • Bport gives Peanut some room in the paint, but he drives to drive the rock and is stripped. The Knights transition and settle, but miss the shot. Stags ball.
  • Herbie misses a pick-and-pop three-pointer, and Anthony Johnson misses a tip-in. But they get the ball back and hit Yorel Hawkins in transition for an easy lay-in and the foul. Hawkins gets his first game points and heads to the line. He botches the free throw though.
  • Herbie tries to penetrate Bport's zone but is hacked. Stags retain possession.
  • Yorel Hawkins makes his long awaited Stags' debut. He checks in with Anthony Johnson.
  • Jon Han hits a mid-ranger and does the work. Nicely done. On the other end, Teariz Stennis was driving but Nero went over and made sure that didn't happen. Stennis heads to the line.
  • Offensive foul called on Quentin Martin on the drive. Looks like he went into Nero a little too hard.
  • Mamadou gets lost in transition and is open under the basket. Nero finds him for the lay-in. 32-30 Stags.
  • A.J. gets called for goaltending, and it counts for Lex James. Han walks and the Stags start out the 2nd half in "first half 2006" fashion. 30-30 tie.
  • Tom <3's Snood.
  • Bport Ball to start the half - let's see how they look in the second.
  • My personal surprise of the first half was that Warren Edney did not play, yet foward Sean Grzeck logged six quality minutes in the first half. Scrimmages, if anything, are interesting to say the least.
  • Oprah Moment of the Year: a Bridgeport assistant proposes to his girlfriend at center court - much to the delight of everybody on hand at Harbor Yard. Standing O all around. Now say it with me, "Awwwwwww...."

- Keith Connors

Halftime at the Harbor: 30-28 FU

  • Sloppy, Sloppy First half: That's to be expected. This is a scrimmage, and it's the first time they've really seen some live arena action. I'm expecting a more sound second half. I'm looking to see a few things:
    • More poise on Offense
    • Control on D
    • The rotations Cooley uses in the 2nd Half - is it preview of next Sunday @ Wake?
  • HALFTIME: Fairfield 30, Bridgeport 28
  • Han almost shoots, but kicks it across court to Evanovich who misses another wide open three. After a Bport miss, Devin Johnson gets a nice look from Han underneath and puts it in easily. 30-28 FU.
  • Now it's a block call against the Knights. Seems like the Stags are making it a point to move more aggresively on offense.
  • Armonas goes one-for-one at the charity stripe. The Stags get the ball and try to push it, but Bport gets called for a hold on the other end of the floor. Fairfield retains possession with 1:00 to go.
  • Peanut gets called on a loose ball foul. Oh, peaches.
  • Quinten Martin hits a three. And he worked for it. Gotta give Bport a lot of credit - they came here with a chip on their shoulder trying to prove something. 28-27 FU.
  • Nice feed to a cutting Jon Han. The junior lays it in nicely off the glass. 28-25 FU.
  • Bport goes with a 2-3 zone. FU had a lot of problems with the zone last year (a.k.a. Loyola)
  • And there for Grzeck. I must be a jinx. Devin checks back in.
  • Lots of playing time early for Grzeck. Could it be a sign of things to come?
  • Stags start to run a half-court trap on D. You can see they are making an effort to try some different things on defense. Coach is yelling at Nero to work more on defense.
  • Dapper Cooley Watch: Nice black blazer, white shirt, and a solid gold tie. Let's hope it's a golden year. Classy, man.

- Keith Connors

26-24 FU ; 3:01 in the 1st

  • Media T.O.
  • A Bport turnover leads to a DUNK from Han. Nicely done by the Stags. They're putting pressure back on the Knights in transition.
  • Nero hits a jumper. Looks like the Stags are making it a point to go down low now on offense. 24-24 Tie.
  • Speak of the devil, he jams down a pass with authority. On the other end, Bridgeport gets a quick, easy, transition bucket. 24-22 Bport.
  • Anthony Johnson gets a nice little shot and gets on the board. They've got to look inside to him more 22-20 Knights.
  • I could hear them from here. Hopefully the timeout wakes them up.
  • Ladies and gentleman, the jacket is off. You know Cooley can't be pleased - bad execution on offense, sloppy defense. This could be a long night.

- Keith Connors

22-18 Bridgeport; 4:56 in the 1st

  • Littlejohn tips in a miss. Good aggresiveness by B-port. After Han hits a shot, Bridgeport answers right away.
  • Han nails a mid-ranger quickly in transition. Good job by the PG of smelling blood. 17-16 B-port.
  • Haim heaves a three with the shot clock expiring and misses it. The Stags grab the board.
  • Lex James posts up Middeltown and drains the turnaround. This kid James can play for Bridgeport. They're up three. 17-14 B-port.
  • Allen gets the ball in transition, but drives hard with his elbow and gets called for the offensive foul. Yet another Stag turnover.
  • Herbie Allen misses an open three on a nice dish from Geoff Middletown. Both sides of the ball look a little rusty early on. Knights ball.
  • Keith needs to go to the bathroom.
  • Stag Watch: I'd say about 300 people, and only about30 students. But, hey, it is a Friday night. And it's only a scrimmage.

- Keith Connors

15-14 Bridgeport; 7:58 in the 1st

  • Timeout for us media folk.
  • Loose ball goes out of bounds on a sloppy in-bounds pass.
  • The little spunky point guard Omer Haim pulls a nice move, but loses the ball in the process.
  • Devin misses a jumper, pulls down his own board, and then misses it again. Nice effort, but the Stags still seem to have trouble executing.
  • Middletown grabs the board after two misses from Stennis. Stags ball.
  • Geoff Middletown and Sean Grzeck check in. Interesting to see them before Edney and Hawkins.
  • Stennis is fouled on a turnaround jumper. Mamadou fouls him (shocker).
  • Mamadou hits a mid-ranger. He looks sharp early on - always a plus since he's usually in there for D. 15-14 Knights.
  • Evanovich hits Mamadou under the boards, and he nails a lay-in after a few pump fakes. On the other end, Littlejohn pulls up and hits a shot. Shotty D thus far from the Stags. 15-12 B-port.
  • Evanovich misses a three on a kick-out from Herbie. He's can be great if he can somehow nail shots consistently. He moves on off-ball screens very well, and big man with range are tough to defend.
  • Lyndon Jordan shows a little aggressiveness, but also shows he's a freshman by turning the ball over. Apparently, from what I've head, it's the one flaw he has right now. Not exactly good if you're a PG.
  • Cornell Littlejohn finally gets his "one more" call on some nice ball movement on the perimeter and nails a three. Nicely done by this Purple Knight offense. 13-10 Knights.
    The ref in front of me has some sweet Nike kicks.
  • Tip o' the Cap: Francis Romano and the Pep Band look like they're in mid-season form. Same with "He Said"'s Dan Stanczyk on the radio. Nicely done, gentlemen.

- Keith Connors

10-10 Tie; 11:48 in the 1st

  • Stag T.O. on offense leads to a transition foul on Herbie. And we've got ourselves a media timeout.
  • Interesting five-some out there, as pointed out by Mr. Tom Cleary. We've got Herbie Allen and Lyndon Jordan at guard, and then Mamdou, Evanovich, and Marty. Hmmmm... (Reminder: this is a scrimmage. Breathe easy)
  • Cornell Littlejohn hits a three in the corner with the shot clock winding down. The Knights tie it up. I'm LOVIN' that name. 10-10 game.
  • The 'Dou checks in.
  • Evanovich misses another shot. He's shot about four times already, and has looked very poised on offense. I'm sure he's anxious after missing a whole year due to the transfer. He's aggressive, and I like it.
  • Mike Evanovich shows off that long-range ability with a deep three. Gotta love a big man that can shoot. 10-7 FU.
  • Mantas Armonas hits a mid range jumper with Han in his face. Nice shot. Bridgeport knots it up at 7-7.
  • T. Stenniz botches a good look, but so does FU on the other side of the court. Some easy misses early on.
  • Cooley is very into it, kicking his feet around showing them how to stand in front of defenders. What an eccentric performance...
  • After a long play-set up from the Purples, they throw the ball away. But it's off Peanut so they get it back with nine on the shot clock.
  • Referee timeout on a loose ball foul
  • Jordan misses an open three-pointer. He got a nice look but pushed it a little.
  • Mike Evanovich checks in for Herbie Allen, and Lyndon Jordan subs for D. Johnson. Let's see them in their first action.
  • B-port puts on a press of its own. You can tell it's a scrimmage right now.
  • Almost lost my StagCard today. Scared the crap out of me. I got it back though, so no worries. But thanks to all the loyal readers who sent concerned e-mails. I was touched...

- Keith Connors

7-5 FU; i15:26 n the 1st

  • Media T.O.
  • Missed shot on Lex James, who then commits a loose ball foul going in for the rebound.
  • Han rotates the ball with D. Johnson up top and hits Nero, who misses a turnaround jumper. Bridgeport pulls down the d-reb.
  • Loose ball foul on an in-bound pass from the Knights. Stag Ball. Thanks.
  • Miss from Anthony Davis, and a rare rebound for Herbie after it bounced around for a little. The little-big man than buries it on a pick-and pop from the top of the key. 7-5 Stags.
  • After a near errant pass from Anthony Johnson, Herbie Allen tosses it away trying to get it in the paint to Devin Johnson. Bridgeport ball (nice alliteration, I might add).
  • Offensive foul on Lax James in the paint. Apparently, he threw some 'bows.
  • Martin hits a three in the corner after the Purple Knights break the press. He was wide open in the corner. 5-4 Knights.
  • FU puts on a full court press. Peanut Johnson gets the turnover and dunks it to take a 4-2 lead.
  • Anthony Johnson gets a pretty look to Nero on a back-door cut underneath. Nero lays it in, to it at 2.
  • Now Han turns it over and B-port goes the other way. Quinten Martin hits a fade away post and scores. 2-0 Bridgeport.
  • Turnover and the Stags get down the court in transition. After a botched lay-in, Han settles.
  • Tip It Good: It's Anthony Johnson vs. Lex James (6-10 senior). And James takes it down. Bridgeport Ball.

- Keith Connors

Hello from the Harbor: FU/Bridgeport

And....... we're back! Welcome to the Mirror Sports Blog's coverage of the 2007-08 Men's Basketball season, and some in-depth coverage for your Fairfield University Stags!

Last season, our critical coverage, in-game analysis, and live game log were huge hits, and we're looking to build off of that this season. Please let us know what we can to do to help make the blog as good as possible.

Anyway, here's some pre-game notes:
  • This is the Stags' first action since a situational scrimmage @ Dartmouth last weekend. Their first game of the season comes next Sunday, November 9th at Wake Forest.
  • This is the second consecutive year that Fairfield is opening its schedule with a cross-town scrimmage against Bridgeport. Last season, Jon Han led the way with 13 points in a 68-51 victory at Harbor Yard. The Stags have played the Purple Knights 53 times in their history, with FU holding a 40-13 advantage.
  • Ed Cooley kicks off his second year as head coach. He claimed that the first season taught him a lot about "rotations, time outs, and what to run early in the games". This is our first chance to truly see that in action.
  • Herbie Allen and Devin Johnson may be starting as of now, but highly-touted freshman PG Lyndon Jordan and SFs Warren Edney and Yorel Hawkins will challenge for playing time from the get-go. It should be fun to see these guys out on the court for the first time.
  • Didn't you guys miss us? Honestly?
  • Pre-game meal: a little chicken wings and pop'ems, and some spicy roll-ups. I'm a big, big fan. I forgot how much I missed the set-up at Harbor Yard. They are very classy here. Although we were a little early and thought it would just be snacks. Still, I like the spice. (Baltimore native Chris Simmons wanted some Old bay with the wings though).
Stay tuned for more... game time is in a little over 40 minutes.

- K.C.


Here's a quick look at tonight's starters for the men's game against Bridgeport:

G #3 Jon Han Junior
G #15 Herbie Allen Junior
C #32 Anthony Johnson Sophomore
F #44 Greg Nero Sophomore
F #Devin Johnson Sophomore

Back for some pre-game notes in about an hour.

- Keith Connors