SCOTCH PLAINS/ FANWOOD, NJ - The Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA Men’s Basketball League (FSPY) wrapped-up its fourth regular season last week and then opened its three-weeks of playoffs with a pair of divisional round play-in games Sunday, March 10th.
Before a standing room-only crowd, both higher seeded teams advanced: third seeded Court Masters outlasted sixth seed Got Skillz 61-57 while fourth seeded Above the Rim served notice that it would be a team to be reckoned with, trouncing fifth seededDouble Dribble 74-40. Both Court Masters and Above the Rim advance to the Final Four next Sunday facing #2 Hoop Town and #1 Fast Break respectively for the right to play for the League Championship the following week. Both Hoop Town and Fast Break had byes in the first round based on winning their divisions.
The Final Four will be held March 17th at FSPY’s Sevell Gymnasium on Martine Avenue in Scotch Plains . Festivities kick-off at 9:30 AM with the consolation round game followed by the semi-finals at 10:45 AM and Noon.
League sponsors will be honored at the start of each game and Family Appreciation Day follows the games. Admission is free to the first 200 fans.
Game one closed with Court Masters, 61 and Got Skillz, 57. Got Skillz controlled the pace of play and never let Court Masters get within 2 points. Got Skillz’ balanced scoring was the difference for 38 of the 40 minutes. Holding Court Master’s Jack Ryan to 21 points through three quarters gave them hope in what turned into a rugged game for both teams.
The Court Masters didn’t need balanced scoring. Although, Jason Pompeo’s 17-point, 9-rebound performance was critical, Ryan dropped 40 total points; 19 of those came in the last 10 minutes of the game to lead CM to the win. Got Skillz held a 3-point lead up to the 37-minute mark but defense, fouls, free throw shooting and timely treys by Ryan were the difference. Third seeded Court Masters punches their ticket to the Final Four where they will face second seeded Hoop Town .
Game two finished with Above the Rim, 74 and Double Dribble, 40. This game featured the February player-of-the-month, and perennial contender for league MVP, Marlon Brown looking to lead Double Dribble to the first round victory. Above the Rim’s Jamal Berry, who has quietly had a very productive 2013 regular season, brought his defensive intensity, ready to go toe-to-to with Brown.
From the opening tip, Above the Rim established itself from behind the arc tallying 10 three pointers. It was a combination of defense and rebounding. However, that enabled Above the Rim to build a big lead and minimize opportunities for Double Dribble to come back. Above the Rim’s David Berger scored 20 and Dennis Glynn added 19. The most notable performance, however, was Berry ’s; He finished with a triple double, 18 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists. Unable to sustain any offensive flow, Double Dribble played from behind all game. Team leader Marlon Brown posted ten points and pulled down 16 rebounds in the effort.
Fourth seeded Above the Rim advances to play #1 seed Fast Break – Double Dribble moves on to the consolation game.
For any questions regarding our YMCA Men’s Basketball League, please contact Ian Merson at the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA at (908) 889-8880.
The Y is the nation’s leading nonprofit committed to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. For information on membership or programs, or to request a schedule of classes, please call the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA at (908) 889-8880 or visit the Y’s website at www.fanwoodscotchplainsymca.org. Financial assistance is available for those who qualify.