Boston High School: Nick Paulos

MCI completes surprise AAA title run

March, 6, 2011

BEVERLY, Mass. -- It is not often that Indiana State commit Khristian Smith gets to sign autographs. After Maine Central Institute’s Cinderella-esque run in the NEPSAC Class AAA tournament, however, Smith was smothered by kids of all ages to get his signature after a near-perfect 28 point performance against New Hampton.

“It was a great day for me. It feels real good to win it all,” said the overjoyed Smith. “Indiana State won their conference championship today, too, so we both had a great day.”

Smith had every right to be glowing after only missing five shots in his team’s 73-56 victory over New Hampton. MCI took over the game after the second half, when it went on a 14-4 run in first five minutes to seal the deal, extending a 35-30 halftime lead to 49-32. big man Raphael Maia nice and1 14:16, drop-step, miss drop step, got own rebound put back for and-one, 43-34

“I wanted them to get into the flow of the game and get their rhythm,” MCI head coach Dave Campbell said. “We wanted to play our tempo and we missed some easy shots to start off with. Defensively, we knew we had to pick it up defensively and push them out offensively because they are a very good shooting team.”

It looked as though it was New Hampton’s game to win, after Nick Paulos hit three 3-pointers in the first half. After an early 11-4 run by New Hampton, coach Campbell pulled his players aside and reminded them about their plan.

“[I told them] to trail their screens better, play harder, and push them out of their comfort zone," Campbell said.

Said Smith, “We were looking to keep their big men off of the boards and really contest their three-point shooters. Basically the same thing we did against Brewster."

After Paulos got cold, and Jordan Laguerre (16 points) and Zach Auguste struggled to stay on the floor with foul trouble in the second half, Smith saw his opportunity to take over. He hit pull-up jumper after pull-up jumper, and could not be stopped.

“I visualize [shots] before the game happens," Smith said. "It is something that I’ve worked on since I was little. Now it is easier for me. I’m quicker off of my first step so hitting pull-up jump shots is easier for me. I just need to work on the rest of my game now.”

But the win was not all about Smith. MCI also had nice contributions from sweet-shooting guards Daishon Knight (eight points) and Adrian Rodgers (15), while Campbell and Smith suggest that it was more than just individual performances that won them their championship.

“The one thing that this team had was very good chemistry,” Smith said. “When you have good chemistry and you have three or four months to get that chemistry together that tells you something about that kind of kid we had. My assistant and I both live in the dorm with them. We are with them 24/7. The kids all get along. They do things together all the time. I think that lends to the fact on how good you are going to be.”

“I’m proud of my team,” Smith said. “We came together as a real team. This isn’t just my MVP. I’m bringing it for everybody. I’m just happy to bring a championship back to MCI.”

The 3-1/2 hour car ride from Pittsfield to Endicott College might just have been worth it for the Huskies.

New Hampton knocks off STM in AAA semi's

March, 5, 2011

BEVERLY, Mass. -- Nick Paulos came off a back screen, dribbled once and let it fly from a few steps inside the three-point line, at the top of the key. Then he pumped his fist, and let out a shout.

And then a few seconds later, after St. Thomas More's Adam Jones missed a potential game-tying three at the buzzer, Paulos exhaled. Amidst all the hype behind Brewster Academy's loaded starting five, and STM's prized 2012 center Andre Drummond, it's Paulos and his hot-handed New Hampton teammates that are punching their tickets to the NEPSAC Class AAA finals against an unheralded Maine Central Institute squad. New Hampton downed STM, 59-56, in the nightcap of tonight's Class AAA finals at Endicott College's Post Center.

The Huskies (21-11) will face MCI for the championship Sunday at 5 p.m., at the Post Center. The two teams split their regular-season series.

"I'm glad I could make it, and help us go to the the championship, you know," smiled Paulos, a UNC Greensboro-bound post-graduate who finished with 16 points (including four 3-pointers) and seven rebounds. "I'm pretty excited."

Paulos' winning shot came off an inbounds pass with 22.5 ticks left in regulation, the his team holding a 57-56 lead over the Chancellors (27-7), and just seven seconds left on the shot clock. St. Thomas More had two more chances at the other end, the first one an errant Damion Lee three-point attempt out of a timeout called with 13.9 seconds to go. Fairfield-bound senior Adam Jones pounced on the loose board, calling another timeout with 4.3 seconds to set up another try.

Out of that, Jones got a great look at the top of the key, pumped once and fired up a flat shot that clanked off the rim as time expired.

In this uncharacteristically low-scoring affair, the Huskies didn't allow a field goal in the last 2:11 to seal this.

"We just talked about guarding their stuff, which we've seen," head coach Peter Hutchins said of those final minutes. "We've played them twice now, [STM head coach] Jere [Quinn] does a great job...the last couple possessions, we were switching alot. When you have the lead like that, you're just trying not to give it away."

Meanwhile, the Huskies had to account for STM's 6-foot-10, 275-pound, Amare-like figure in the middle, No. 1 Class of 2012 recruit Drummond. The junior dominated the glass in the first half, with 12 of his game-high 15 rebounds, but struggled from the field by going 3 for 12. In the second half, he didn't register a point.

Credit Hutchins' game plan, which called for double-teams, sometimes triple-teams, in the post; and for the Huskies to deny a second touch for Drummond in a possession, forcing the hand of shooters like Lee, Jones, Roy Mabrey and Indiana Faithfull. Suffice it to say the Chancellors struggled from the perimeter, negating a relatively mistake-free evening.

"When you look at us statistically, we have two turnovers the first 30 minutes of the game," Quinn said. "And our third came within the last two minutes. Our team has always played everyone difficult and tough. Of our seven losses, five have been by three points or less. So on a day like today when we're not making shots, the kids competed. And that's all you can ask for."

Jordan Laguerre led the way with 19 points and seven rebounds for New Hampton, while Lee (16 points) and Jones (11) reached double-figures for the Chancellors.

New Hampton's Paulos commits to UNCG

October, 28, 2010
ESPNU is reporting that New Hampton Prep small forward Nick Paulos has verbally committed to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro for the fall of 2011.

Paulos, a 6-foot-7 native of Salt Lake City, is doing a post-graduate year at the New Hampshire prep school after starring last season at Olympus High. The Spartans have a bit of a connection Paulos' program -- first-year assistant Wes Miller did a prep year at New Hampton before walking on at North Carolina and winning a national title in 2005.