Balanced Colton’s Cruisers prevails
At halftime of the Mansion Park Summer Basketball League Division 4 Men’s championship game, Colton’s Cruisers’ Bobby Miller stood at halfcourt clapping in tune with Pharrell Williams’ hit song, “Happy.”
It turned out to be a happy night indeed for Miller and his teammates. Colton’s Cruisers defeated J. David Productions/The Buccinese, 41-29, Monday to win the title on a cool, windy night at Mansion Park.
Miller scored a game-high 12 points, and Phil Rimmer had nine points to lead the Colton’s Cruisers offense.
“We never have the same high-scorer. Each game it’s someone different,” Miller said. “I was at the beach last week and thought I’d be a little rusty, but I had fresh legs and was able to come in and make some shots.”
Rimmer got Colton’s off to a good start with a pair of buckets inside. Nate Blough and Ben Miller sank back-to-back 3-pointers to give it an early 10-7 lead.
“One of our keys is to work it inside to Phil early. When they start double- and triple-teaming him, that opens up the perimeter,” Bobby Miller said.
Rimmer’s strong play in the paint also negated any hopes J. David Productions had of establishing an inside game.
“He’s a big boy. We thrive on getting a lot of second-chance points. We weren’t able to get any of those with him in there,” J. David’s Jimmy Clancy said.
Bobby Miller scored the team’s next six points off the bench as part of a 14-4 run. Rimmer added a pair of free throws, and Ryan Pugh drained a trey to put Colton’s Cruisers up 24-13.
“The first couple games we were just getting to used to playing with each other again,” Rimmer said. “After that, we started playing with more chemistry and seven or eight games in a row.”
Josh Zupon got J. David Productions back to within single digits with a 3-pointer to close out the first-half scoring.
J. David cut into the Colton’s Cruisers’ lead even more in the second half, pulling to within one point at 29-28 near the 8-minute mark.
Nate Clancy started the second half with a three-point play. Matt Georgiana and Jimmy Clancy continued the surge with back-to-back 3-pointers.
J. David Productions scored just one point the rest of the way, though, as Colton’s Cruisers sewed up the title from the free-throw line. After Corey Henderson made 1-of-2 free throws, Pugh converted 3-of-4 on back-to-back possessions.
Henderson capped with the win with a behind-the-back pass to a streaking Bobby Miller for an easy lay-in with less than 1 minute to play.
“We got behind, were stagnant moving the ball and couldn’t catch up,” Jimmy Clancy said.
Jimmy Clancy and Georgiana scored seven points each to lead J. David Productions.
J. David Productions (29): Bush 1 0-2 2, N. Clancy 1 3-5 5, Brandt 0 0-0 0, Zupon 2 1-4 6, Saxman 1 0-0 2, Georgiana 3 0-0 7, J. Clancy 3 0-0 7, Mitchell 0 0-0 0, Plummer 0 0-1 0. Totals – 11 4-12 29
Colton’s Cruisers (41): Henderson 1 2-5 4, Bullett 1 1-2 4, Rimmer 2 5-13 9, Blough 1 0-0 3, Pugh 1 3-4 6, Bo. Miller 6 0-0 12, Harbaugh 0 0-0 0, Civils 0 0-2 0, Be. Miller 1 0-2 3. Totals – 13 11-28 41.
SCORE BY HALVES
J. David Productions16 13 – 29
Colton’s Cruisers24 17 – 41
3-point goals: J. David Productions 3 (Zupon, Georgiana, J. Clancy); Colton’s Cruisers 4 (Pugh, Be. Miller, Bo. Miller, Blough).