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home : sports : regional July 22, 2014

Men's College Hoop: Vermont Starts Fast, Overwhelms LSC
UVM’s Candon Russin (right) and Lyndon State’s Iser Barnes chase down the ball in Burlington on Monday, December 30, 2013. (Photo by Glenn Russell/Burlington Free Press)
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UVM’s Candon Russin (right) and Lyndon State’s Iser Barnes chase down the ball in Burlington on Monday, December 30, 2013. (Photo by Glenn Russell/Burlington Free Press)

Free Press Correspondent

BURLINGTON -- The outcome was pretty much preordained from the moment Division I Vermont scheduled Division III Lyndon State for a men's basketball game at Patrick Gymnasium. The Catamounts were going to win, likely by a significant margin.

So the question for both head coaches after UVM's 88-48 victory really was: Did you get out of this game what you wanted?

From that standpoint, the outcome was positive for both sides in this first meeting of the state teams.

The Hornets took on superior competition, worked hard, found their range from 3-point land and gained a bit of confidence for their league schedule.

The Catamounts worked on their defense, took a look at everyone with the exception of Luke Apfeld -- bench-bound as a cautionary measure -- and got in a good workout before heading off to Dartmouth on Saturday and Yale on Wednesday for their final nonleague games.

"I was proud of their effort. I don't think we were afraid. I think we just didn't come out as sharp as we needed to," LSC coach Joe Krupinski said. "Obviously we were playing the best team we're going to play all year ... but we didn't back down, we physically held our own and we have a lot of things to work on. This was a good way to see what we do need to work on."

UVM coach John Becker was also pleased to see his Catamounts take advantage of the game.


"Coming off the Christmas break, you never know what you're going to get but I thought the guys came out and played very well on defense. We got a lot of guys in the game; we got a lot of guys extended minutes to see what they can do," he said. "We were able to work on some things and get some of the guys working their way back into the lineup some minutes and some rest.

"We wanted on our 2-3 zone, wanted to see some of the younger guys and wanted to see how our guys responded. Defensively we have not played to my liking. We've been making strides ... we're starting to see a little more sense of urgency, a little more attention to detail in the defensive end," Becker said.

As for the game itself, UVM (5-8) sprinted to a 14-0 lead, finished the half ahead 45-21 and stretched out the lead over the final 20 minutes by employing its bench extensively. Hector Harold topped the scoring list with 18 points, followed by Dre Wills (13), Sandro Carissimo (12) and Ethan O'Day (10 points and 11 rebounds). Eleven of UVM's 12 players scored two or more points and everyone played at least 11 minutes.

"Obviously getting a win was the No. 1 goal but to play the way that we feel we should be playing, I think we took a step in the right direction," Carissimo said.

"The coach has really been pressing us as far as defense go. He wants us to start executing more properly on defense and tonight we kind of put some things together," Harold said.

David Johnson hit 5 of 7 3-pointers for a game-high 20 points as the Hornets (2-6) were 10-for-24 beyond the arc.

"That's something we have not really done this year. We have not shot 3s well at all. That's been one of our weak points," Krupinski said.

"A lot of teams are playing us zone and we have not reacted great to it so that was good to see. Hopefully that can kickstart us into our league schedule ... maybe some of those 3s will go down and make it a little easier to score."

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