Although Manchester Central is the only unbeaten boys’ basketball team in Division I, there are several teams within striking distance of first place hoping Central stumbles down the stretch.
Bishop Guertin of Nashua (10-1), Trinity of Manchester (9-1) and Merrimack (9-1) are the Division I teams with one loss, and BG will play at Trinity tonight in what looks like the best game on the NHIAA menu. Trinity beat BG 50-46 in last year’s Division I championship game.
BG, which upset Central in last year’s quarterfinals, has won three games by three points or less this year. The Cardinals have been getting consistent perimeter scoring from CJ Boykin, John Noon, Kyle Gavin and Jack Zimmerman. Boykin made a last-second shot to give BG a 70-68 victory over Winnacunnet of Hampton in its most recent game.
Wenyen Gabriel, a 6-foot-7 center, and 6-foot-4 forward Carmen Giampetruzzi give Trinity a strong inside game. Trinity’s lone loss came against Central (77-60).
It’s the first half of a crucial two-game stretch for BG, which does not play Central during the regular season. BG will play at Merrimack on Tuesday.
“I’ve seen BG play,” Central coach Doc Wheeler said. “Their point guard (Boykin) is real talented. He killed us last year in the quarterfinal. Very explosive player. They’ve got three or four other guys who really shoot the three-ball well, so it’ll be interesting to see their outside game against Trinity’s inside game.
“Carmen and Wenyen are really starting to put up some big numbers. I think that’s what it’s going to boil down to — an inside game versus an outside game.”
- - - - - - - - -
THE WAIT was longer than expected, but the inaugural Frank Monahan Basketball Showcase will be held Sunday at Bishop Brady High School in Concord.
The event, which was originally scheduled for Dec. 15 but was postponed by bad weather, features three games: Lee Academy (Lee, Maine) vs. Notre Dame Prep (Fitchburg, Mass.), noon, and Kennett (Conway) vs. Bishop Brady (Concord), 1:30 p.m., and Jean-de-Brebeuf (Montreal) vs. Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro), 3 p.m.
Monahan, who served as Merrimack College’s men’s basketball coach from 1970 to 1980, also coached at both Bishop Brady and Concord High. He guided Bishop Brady to three straight championship games, and the Class I title in 1997.
After Monahan died of a heart attack in 2000, Marshall Crane and Billy Collins, both of whom played for Monahan at Bishop Brady, helped form the Frank Monahan Foundation, which raises money to help youth through sports and education.
“The money raised from the event is used for athletics and academics in local communities,” Crane said. “The goal is to help provide and create opportunities for kids.”
Brewster Academy shooting guard Jared Terrell (Oklahoma State), Brewster Academy small forward Jonah Bolden (UCLA), Notre Dame Prep point guard Daxter Miles (West Virginia) and Notre Dame Prep shooting guard Detrick Mostella (Pittsburgh) are among the players who have committed to Division I schools.
- - - - - - -
THE Pinkerton Academy of Derry and Londonderry boys’ and girls’ teams will play their second doubleheader of the season Tuesday night at Pinkerton, and the Pinkerton boys and Londonderry girls will each be without their best player.
Pinkerton’s Luke Rosinski, a 6-foot-7 sophomore forward, has missed the last two games with mononucleosis and may be out for the remainder of the regular season.
“His eardrum burst (earlier this week) because of the fluid and that’s a side effect of mono, but my understanding is that’s a good thing because when the fluid drains out that can speed up his recovery,” said Pinkerton coach Pete Rosinski, who is Luke’s father. “I don’t know when he’ll be back, but I know he’s weak now. I think a best-case scenario would be three weeks.”
Without Rosinski, Pinkerton dropped a 70-41 decision to Londonderry when the teams met on Jan. 31.
Londonderry point guard Aliza Simpson is still recovering from a hairline fracture in her right leg and won’t play Tuesday. Londonderry coach John Fagula said Simpson will visit the doctor early next week and it’s possible she could return to practice by the end of next week.
“She’s off crutches, and that’s a good thing,” Fagula said. “We don’t want to rush her back too quick. We’re hoping she gets in for a few games before the tournament.”
Londonderry is 2-1 without Simpson, who has committed to play at University of New Hampshire next season. Simpson did not play when Pinkerton beat Londonderry 53-49 in the first meeting.