Boston High School: Bippy Manuel

No. 5 Cambridge cruises through No. 21 Everett

January, 12, 2011
1/12/11
2:48
AM ET



CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Fifteen points, fifteen rebounds, five well-timed blocks, no matter. The countenance doesn't lie.

And Jacquil Taylor was visibly thwarted as he left the locker room following his No. 5 Cambridge Falcons' all-too-easy 60-44 win over their Greater Boston League nemesis, No. 21 Everett. It was a sloppy night, but one that started on a very high note for his teammates (a game-opening 12-4 run yielded a 32-18 halftime lead) and a very low one for him. The 6-foot-8 sophomore finished strong, and as usual made some highlight-reel dunks to spark the Falcons (7-0), but started the night off 0 for 6.

Not a totally disappointing night -- "We got the win, but we need to make some corrections," he shrugged -- but frustrating?

"Yeah, and it was very bad in my case," Taylor said. "I'd rather start the game off making all six shots instead of missing them. Going 0 for 6, to me that's bad."

Meanwhile, across the hallway, Cambridge head coach Lance Dottin was taking deep breaths and shaking his head about some other perceived deficiencies in the win. Namely, the Crimson Tide (5-1) threw 2-3 zone looks at the Falcons for extended periods of time, especially in the second half, doubling down on Taylor in the post with its long, lean tandem of senior Erno Deshommes and junior Alain Jeanty (13 points, 14 rebounds).

That left junior Maurice Taylor and seniors Kyroe Qualls-Betts and Andre Dottin with a slew of open looks on the perimeter, ones they did not convert into buckets. Overall, the Falcons shot 38 percent from the field, and were 2 of 24 from three-point range.

"There were alot of open shots, and you've got to knock them down when you're open," Dottin said. "I thought we did a poor job of moving the basketball, getting stuck on one side of the floor, but that's what happens when you're settling for shots -- you know, that first pass. We've gotta get out of that first pass syndrome, and we've got to get that ball moving and attacking the zone a whole lot better.

"We'll do that, we'll keep practicing, so we're gonna just get back to work. We're happy with the win, GBL, so we'll just make sure that we've got to work on those things."

But a win -- and a double-digit one over an ESPNBoston MIAA Top 25 team at that -- is a win. And the Falcons proved once again to be special when given the opportunity to push the tempo. Deondre Starling (15 points, 11 rebounds) capped a game-opening 12-4 run for Cambridge with a steal at the right wing and driving layup, after which Everett head coach Bippy Manuel first called for the zone.

The Falcons opened the second quarter with a 10-0 run to push out to a 22-7 lead, highlighted by the first of several explosive dunks by Jacquil Taylor. Jacquil took a long outlet pass from his brother down the left flank, gathered and slammed the ball home with two hands. They followed up on the next possession with Marcus Faison (11 points) converting a three-point play for a 15-point lead with five minutes left in the first half.

Minutes later, with Cambridge holding a 26-10 lead, Jeanty racked up his second foul, and that gave way to another Jacquil Taylor dunk with just over a minute to go in the first half. This time, it was a two-handed tip-slam off an errant three-pointer from Tyrone Dacosta to make it 30-18.

"It's like an energy boost," Starling said of Jacquil Taylor's dunks. "It gives everyone momentum. Everyone gets hyped up, the crowd goes wild, we get hyper, it gets us back to reality, knowing where we're at right now."

Starling, meanwhile, might have been the star of the night. In addition to the presence his lanky 6-foot-4 frame made around the rim at both ends, he was tasked with manning up the Tide's best playmaking guard, Manny Asprilla (13 points). The senior, who is committed to Boston College for football, made some terrific drives through the lane and connected well with his post players, but in spurts. Meanwhile Matt Costello, making his season debut after battling an ankle injury the first month, was held without a point in seven attempts from the field.

"He's always big. I mean, Deondre's big, he's a fabulous player," Dottin said. "He can do so many different things. He can rebound on both ends of the floor, he's great off the offensive glass, but he's even better on the defensive glass. And then, Deondre can pretty much cover anyone we ask him to cover. And tonight we really needed him to pressure the ball, and get on Manny, and that's what he did. That's what Deondre does, he's kind of Mr. Everything."

BABC: Mansfield topples No. 4 New Mission

December, 30, 2010
12/30/10
12:58
AM ET
CHELSEA, Mass. -- Mansfield's 20 points in the fourth quarter barely beat the 19 points tallied by No. 4 New Mission, but the Hornets picked up a 61-54 victory on Wednesday at the BABC Holiday Tournament.

Mansfield improves to 3-1 on the season, while the fourth-ranked Titans fall to 3-3.

A basket scored by the Hornets' senior Mike Lofton erased an early 5-5 tie, igniting a 11-2 rally that put Mansfield ahead of New Mission, 18-7, by the end of the first quarter.

Hornets freshman Kevin Connor scored three of the first six points in the second quarter, helping the Hornets to a 14-point cushion over New Mission. Trailing 25-13, the Titans' senior Darius Davis hit back-to-back shots from long range, bringing the Titans within eight points of Mansfield.

Finishing the quarter with seven points, Connor ended out the half with a pair of free throws, making the score 29-19.

Back-and-forth traffic in the third was halted by a 6-0 run by New Mission, which included four points scored by junior Leroy Hamilton. Mansfield outscored the Titans 6-4 to close out the quarter, making the score 41-35.

Despite New Mission coming within four points of the Hornets, 52-48, halfway through the fourth quarter, the game momentum stayed with Mansfield. The Hornets didn't look back, taking a 8-6 scoring advantage in the final minutes of regulation, securing its third win of the season.

Three of Mansfield's seniors finished the day in double figures, with Jeff Hill leading all scorers with 16 points, followed by Lofton with 15 and Leonard Richardson with 12 points.

Mansfield's head coach Mike Vaughn said, “[Hill] was good throughout the game; he is by far our effort leader on this team.”

“He hit some free throws, which really made a big difference in the end.”

New Mission's Davis ended the day with 14 points, while Leroy Hamilton recorded 12.

“I think both teams came out kind of sluggish, but we were able to make some plays down the stretch,” said Vaughn. “It was good to get out of here with a win.”

EVERETT ESCAPES
24 seconds.

An entire game of basketball all came down to the final 24 seconds for Everett as the Crimson Tide edged past Springfield's Putnam Vocational Technical High, 47-46.

“I'm really proud of these kids, it's been a different person [leading the team] every game,” said Everett head coach Bippy Manuel.

Everett started out with a quick 7-2 lead over the Beavers, including five points scored by by senior Andrew Brant. Putnam (3-4) was able to get within two points of the Crimson Tide, 10-8, but a 5-2 run to close out the quarter gave Everett a 15-10 lead.

The Crimson Tide defense held Putnam to just two points for the entire second quarter, while its offense was led by Brant with six points. A jump shot by sophomore Gilly DeSouza at the buzzer gave Everett a 28-12 lead at the break.

The halftime break was exactly what Putnam's offense needed, as the Beavers went a 7-0 run to open the third quarter, led by junior Jordan Almore with five points.

Putnam continued its offensive burst, cutting its deficit to two points, 34-32. A shot from beyond the arc by senior John Toledo gave the Beavers their first lead of the game, 35-34.

Everett was outscored 25-12 to end the third quarter, falling behind 37-36 lead.

Refusing to give up, the Crimson Tide quickly scored six points in the opening minutes of the four quarter to take 43-37 lead.

With two minutes remaining in the game, Putnam's seven point deficit was quickly erased by a 6-0 rally. A pair of shots from the free throw line by junior Melquan Pinkney brought the Beavers within one point, 47-46.

Everett answered back by stalling the Beavers' offensive attack in the final 24 seconds of the game, edging out a 47-46 victory.

Almore led all scorers with 17 points, while Brant finished with 16 points and Everett's senior Erno Deshommes tallied 14 points.

BABC: Everett rules the frontcourt

December, 29, 2010
12/29/10
1:05
AM ET
CHELSEA, Mass. – Two big men are better than one.

While Haverhill’s Noah Vonleh might have been the marked man entering the Hillies’ BABC Holiday Classic tilt with Everett on Tuesday, it was the Crimson Tide’s bigs who carried the day. Senior captain Erno Deshommes and junior forward Alain Jeanty combined for more than half of Everett’s offensive output in a 61-44 win.

Deshommes led all scorers with 22, while Jeanty put in 15. However, it might have been the pair’s defensive mettle in containing the 6-foot-8 Vonleh on the post that was most crucial to the Crimson Tide.

“That was our game plan,” said Everett head coach Bippy Manuel, who is filling in this season for John DiBiaso (who’s in the shop attending to a couple of medical procedures). “When they went to the low post, we’d front [Vonleh] and double-team him from the back. We tried to bother him on every shot.”

Meanwhile, the Everett duo also created some early foul trouble for Vonleh, who spent a good portion of the second quarter on the bench. Without their shot-blocking presence inside, the Crimson Tide feasted early and often as Everett lead throughout the entirety of the game.

“Noah got in some foul trouble early, so it made them harder to defend,” Haverhill head coach Mike Trovato said. “But I don’t think we really came to play today. There were a lot of loose balls, a lot of things we could have cleaned up.”

Junior guard Edwin Valentin led Haverhill with 13 points while knocking down 3 of 4 from 3-point range.

Manuel was glad to see his team’s performance, considering he is without his best player, senior captain Matt Costello. The ESPN Boston Massachusetts Mr. Football honoree has been out since the first game of the basketball season with a high ankle sprain. Manuel said he hopes to have Costello back in the lineup in time for the Crimson Tide’s Greater Boston League battle with No. 10 Cambridge on Jan. 11.

But with Deshommes and Jeanty firing on all cylinders, there is some good news for the Tide.

“They complement each other well,” Manuel said of Deshommes and Jeanty. “They played together all of last year and through the summer. They know each other well, they worked well together, they look for each other. When one of them gets the double-team, they look for the other person. And they’ve played well for us in our first couple of games.”

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