Men's Holiday Basketball Fall 2012

Dynasty

Back Row: Tony Baldarelli, Jonathan Copeland, Zachary Hunter, Kyle Wiggins,
Shane Donnelly
Front Row: Troy Sousa-Semper, Mike Noonan, Mike Dotolo, Nick Coutinho, Ryan Apgar, Brett Miller

 

Championship Game Summary
Dynasty 41, No Dunks 37

On Monday December 3rd, 2012 the Men’s Holiday Basketball league champion was decided. It would be a battle of the brothers as No Dunks was set to take on Dynasty. No Dunks featured the Bruha brothers, while both Dynasty and No Dunks were home to a Coutinho brother respectively. The brotherly love would have to be put on the back burner as both teams dug in for what would turn out to be a ferocious 40 minutes of basketball.

Dynasty won the tip and looked to dominate the boards early with 3 offensive put back attempts but not one could go down. Not to be outdone inside, Mason Pires quickly scored on the block for the first bucket of the game. Zachary Hunter got Dynasty on the scoreboard after pivoting baseline and throwing up a fadeway. Two more quick scores were capped by a Shane Donnelly turn around hook shot to put them up 6-2. They were looking to roar out of the gates and put together a run, but sloppy ball movement by both sides quickly stalled the run and Colin Trabucco extinguished it with a nifty spin hook shot of his own. The game continued on while Kyle Wiggins of Dynasty continued his dominance on the glass, ripping rebound after rebound down. Michael Noonan finally rewarded the big man’s hard work with a great pass down to Wiggins on the block.

Dynasty led 10-4 when the younger Coutinho (Benjamin) decided to crank up the tempo of the game by coming down and hitting a pull up jumper. This made it 10-6 midway through the first half. The teams started seeing déjà vu when big men from both sides repeatedly made moves to get open before knocking the ball off the glass. Jonathan Copeland ended this streak by drawing a bail out foul and sinking one of two from the line. The game remained close as No Dunks could not find a rhythm and hit from beyond the arc.

The elder Coutinho (Nicholas) got himself on the scoring stat sheet with a strong coast to coast move getting to the line to again hit one of two. Trabucco would not let this game slip away so early and he pushed his way right back to the block to draw a foul and hit the hoop.  While he kept the poor free throw shooting alive, No Dunks capitalized by seizing the rebound and kicking it back to Matthew Bruha for a fade away elbow jumper to put the score to 14-10 with 4 minutes to go in the half. Falling out of bounds, a Dynasty player conducted a smart series of tips, to the streaking Troy Sousa-Semper for the uncontested lay-up. Feeling momentum shift again with halftime closing in, Trabucco again demanded the ball and laid it up in traffic for 2. This got them going, Mason Pires snatched an offensive rebound for a put back 2, and Sean Mahegan picked off a dribble at mid court.  The ball just left his finger-tips as the buzzer sounded to even the score at 19 at the half.  This game looked like one for the ages, and certainly was brimming with the potential to go right down to the wire. No Dunks refused to give in and let this moment slip away, and Dynasty scoffed at the notion of letting their pressure up for even a possession. These two heavyweights were primed for another half of quality basketball, 20 minutes away from hoisting the coveted t-shirt.

Kyle Wiggins heard the whispers of his team slipping away, and he responded by rallying the troops and scoring a couple of quick buckets to start the half. Nick Coutinho, feeding off this intensity, got right up into the grill of the offense, which forced a turnover and an easy transition  hoop to quickly put them up 25-19 out of the gate. No Dunks quickly called a timeout to try to curb the run. Coming out of the huddle, Stephen Jackson stared right into the eyes of defeat and nailed a three pointer. Matthew Bruha joined the party and drilled a deep NBA territory three to even the score back at 25. A Dynasty foul led to a frustration technical as he slammed the ball onto the floor, reminiscent of a Rob Gronkowski end zone celebration. This gave No Dunks a 1 point lead, their first of the game. A swooping lay-up by Matt Bruha had the No Dunks bench going crazy. But Brett Miller spoiled the fun, running down the floor to strike with a 3 after a defensive assignment confusion. With just 11:30 to go, it was all tied up at 30 apiece. Nicholas Bruha refused to be overshadowed by his kin, and drove aggressively into the paint to connect on a 1-and-1.

With just 7 minutes remaining, still tied at 32, Mahegan ripped down a defensive rebound and drove the length of the court to get to the line for 2. With an opportunity to take back the lead, he missed both free throws. Matt Bruha somehow ended up with the ball and he too was fouled driving baseline. Once again missed foul shots came back to haunt No Dunks as he too bricked both attempts. Back on the defensive front, Pires sent a shot by Dynasty screaming out of bounds.  The ball, however, was last touched by Dynasty so No Dunks once again regained possession and had another chance to go ahead. Nicholas Bruha this time was determined to put the ball through the hoop and seized up a defender at the top of the key and drilled a three with a hand in the face. With just 3 minutes to go, and a score of 35-32, Wiggins once again put points on the board with a drop step baseline shot for two. Matt Bruha took the ball the other way and tried to connect with Pires on a weak side alley oop toss from the corner, but it sailed out of bounds.

Dynasty had the ball with 2 minutes down by 1. The ball was entered into the post to Copeland who was hacked as he went up. The recurring theme of free throw jitters came through once again, and Copeland couldn’t sink either. No Dunks brought the ball back up and decided to take an errant 3 pointer. Miller looked to take advantage of the poor shot selection and threw up a 3 of his own. The gym seemed to freeze as everyone traced the arc of the shot with their eyes. Nothing but net. This gave Dynasty a 2 point lead with under a minute to go. No Dunks was stunned, and was careless with the ball, playing right into the hand of Dynasty as they stole it right back. Copeland ended up with the rock, and No Dunks was forced to foul to force a 1-and-1. Jonathan Copeland stepped to the line in a pressure-packed situation and calmly knocked both of them through the net. 39-35 with 35.3 seconds to go, No Dunks needed a score quick; Nick Bruha got the miracle he was hoping for and drew a foul shooting a 3. Three huge free throws followed, with an opportunity to bring the game back to a one possession score. Bruha toed the line, and quickly hit the first one. The second was not as fortunate, and it rimmed off to the right side. No Dunks still had time, but the miss visibly deflated the morale of most of their personnel. Bruha connected with the third to make it a 2 point game with 17.3 ticks remaining. The ball was inbounded to their reliable shooter Miller, who strolled up to the line seemingly unfazed and nailed both to all but put the game out of reach. A meaningless desperation missed 3 capped off the contest.

Dynasty stormed the floor overjoyed and looking to celebrate their victory. No Dunks solemnly crawled off the floor. They would have to wait a few months to enact their revenge in the spring. But for now, the one shining moment was all Dynasty’s, and they grasped every glimmering aspect of it. The 2012 Men’s Holiday Basketball Champ had been crowned: Dynasty. But was there one in the making? Only time can tell.

No Dunks

Back Row: Ben Ciciora, Sean Mahegan, Colin Trabucco, Mason Pires
Front Row: Ben Coutinho, Stephen Jackson, Matt Bruha, Nick Bruha