Monday, February 28, 2011

Girls Basketball knocked out in first round of States

Girls Basketball knocked out in States against Wilton. They were only able to score 7 points in the disappointing second half

Girls Basketball winning at halftime

Girls Basketball winning at halftime in the first round of States against Wilton, 21-11.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Girls Hockey Headed To FCIACS

The Girls Hockey Team beat Wilton, 3-2, to advance to the FCIAC final. Junior, Sara Shaker led the wave to get the win as she put in two goals of her own and assisted the third goal. They will face rivals New Canaan on Saturday (2/26) at Terry Conners Ice Rink.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Boys Swimming upsets Undefeated Ridgefield

Boys Swimming upsets Undefeated Ridgefield Friday afternoon (2/18) 102-84 on their senior day.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

John Foster hits GW shot

John Foster hits GW shot with 3 seconds to go to advance the Timberwolves over the suns. They will play the Mavericks after break.

Girls Ice Hockey are Victorious Again

By Marguerite Morgan - Darien High School’s Girls Ice Hockey team came home Wednesday night (2/16) with an exciting win against Greenwich High School. Darien defeated Greenwich 6 to 1 at Dorothy Hamil Ice Rink. The game began with a shaky start when Greenwich scored first. However, Darien gained control shortly after, scoring 6 goals and clearly out shooting their opponent. Junior Emily Tropsa began the scoring streak when she took a hard shot from the left side, giving Darien their first goal of the game. Junior Sara Shaker followed suit with two consecutive goals. There were a bunch of shots and rebounds in front of the net, and both Darien and Greenwich scampered in front of the goal for control of the puck when Shaker tapped it in easily. Shaker later stick handled the puck up the ice and shot the puck right past the goalie’s left shoulder, giving Darien their third goal and Shaker’s second. Freshman Katie de Haas, Senior Ellie Bullit, and Shaker scored the last three goals of the game, leaving Greenwich overwhelmingly defeated. Darien will have a rematch against Greenwich tomorrow, February 18th, in their last home game at 7:40 pm.

Girls’ Basketball Beats Westhill

By Kate Fitzmaurice

Girls’ Basketball (12-7) came away with a crucial victory over Westhill also 12-7 at home on Wednesday. (2/16) Spirits were high in the first half, Darien managed to hold the Stamford girls at 0-0 for the first four minutes. The energy of Senior Day honoring Julia Boulton, Nicole Buch and Shannon Burke was evident in the defensive match up ending the first half with a score of 21-13. At the second half Darien’s expertise and perseverance paid off. Sophomore Kate Bushell (pictured) played tough racking up nearly half the teams over all points and had critical blocks and steals that resulted in a 46-34 win. Buch also contributed with 13 points, sophomore Meg Marren (pictured) with eight and freshmen Emily Stein with two points. Darien was able to stay ahead the entire game and certainly left the season with a bang. Now they are headed on to FCIACs and States! Their next game will be 4PM this Saturday (2/19) against Trumbull at Trumbull High School.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

House Playoff Update: Timberwolves Put Up Win Against Rockets

By Danny Rizzuto - The Rockets and Timberwolves squared off in the 11th/12th grade house league this past Wednesday and resulted in a Timberwolves win. The final score was 46 – 39 which removes the Rockets from the playoffs. Senior John Foster and junior Nicky Neville both led a strong Timberwolves offense to victory. Greens Farms Academy junior Eric Walsh and junior Bobby Minion played well but could not spark a win for the Rockets. The game started off strong for the Timberwolves, who enjoyed a comfortable lead in the beginning, but the Rockets fought back to bring it to a tie. But then with around eight minutes to go the Timberwolves caught fire and ran away with the win. The Timberwolves will look to ride this momentum into tomorrow’s matchup against the Suns (February 17th). Earlier today, the Thunder beat the Spurs 43 - 40 to advance to the Championship on March 14th. The Spurs will play again on an undecided date to try and make it to the championships March 4th.

House Playoff Update: Tony Britton leads Thunder to Finals

By Danny Rizzuto - The eleventh and twelfth grade house game between the Thunder and the Spurs ended in a 43 - 40 win for the Thunder this past Wednesday. The game was close through out, the difference between the teams never being over 6 points. Key player Tony Briton (junior) made clutch shots for Thunder and Elliott Helgans (junior) stepped up and played strong defense to keep the Spurs offense under control. Ben Preston (senior) and Graham Maybell (senior) both put up lots of points for the Spurs, but were unable to outscore the Thunder. The Thunder play in the championship on March 4th and the Spurs play again on a date unknown at this time. Also, the T-Wolves knocked out the Rockets tonight on the backs of John Foster and Nicky Neville. They will take on the Suns tomorrow (2/17) at 8pm in the South Gym.

Girls Basketball Clinches berth in FCIACS and STATE tournament

by Jay Alter - Girls Basketball Clinches berth in FCIACS and STATE tournament after a 46-34 win over Westhill at home,
on senior day. (2/16) The girls will begin their tournaments after february break and will be led my senior, Nicole Buch, and
sophomore duo, Kate Bushell and Meg Marren.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Darien Boys’ Basketball Beats Danbury for 3rd Win of the Season

-By: Catie Wright-

Darien Boys’ Basketball defeated Danbury 76 – 71, for their third win of the season, at DHS home gym on Monday. (2/14).

The Darien boys’ starting line up, Senior captains Chris Allam and Ian Sullivan and seniors Graham Hotchkiss; Charlie Kunzie and Junior, Geoff Leeker who came out with a great start. Although Danbury’s senior, Dean Cory, scored the first point, Sullivan and Allam successfully made both free throws and Sullivan made a breakaway towards the end of the first quarter, tying the score to 10:10 at the end.

The 2nd quarter served to be a challenge though for Darien. Danbury’s, Dean Cory, scored the first basket yet again. Also, Kunzie was only able to make one out of two free throws, bringing the score up to 14: 17 Danbury. By the end of the second quarter, Darien was losing 15:22. At the beginning of half time, injured Senior Captain, Chris Stile quoted, “We started out very well. Chris Allam and Charlie Kunzie had a fiery start. Towards the end though, Danbury’s defense became stronger. Hopefully we’ll be able to overcome it in the second half.”

Stile’s hopes became realities during the 3rd quarter when Darien’s defense and offense picked it up. Leeker, made the first basket of the 3rd quarter and Allam blocked Danbury’s sophomore, Danyjoel Harris, pass and made a breakaway for the net and scored. With 1:50 left in the quarter, Darien took the lead 34:32 when Allam made both free throws.

In the 4th quarter, the audience was sitting at the edge of their seats while they watched the Blue Wave and the Mad Hatters fight it out for the last 12 minutes. The close game ended 76:71, Darien.

Darien Boys’ Basketball will play away against Westhill at Westhill’s Main Gymnasium at 7pm on Wednesday. (2/16)

Photo: Senior captain Ian Sullivan, celebrates after making a basket, with his teammates junior, Matt Lee (#4) and junior, Geoff Leeker (#33) while Charlie Kunzie (#5) waits for the rebound.

Boy’s Basketball Wins 2nd Straight Home Game

By Taiki Miki - The Darien boy’s basketball team (3-14) came away with another victory against FCIAC opponent Danbury(4-13) yesterday (2/14). In the first half, it seemed like the Darien basketball team was in for another tough loss. In the first half, Darien could only manage to salvage 15 points. They were down 15-22. After a pitiful first half riddled with missed shots and turnovers. The Darien offense exploded. After only two points in the first half, senior captain Chris Allam detonated for 28 points in the second half, controlling the point and driving to the basket at will. Veteran senior captain Ian Sullivan was also a big presence, shooting numerous three pointers and contributing for 17 points. Senior Charlie Kunze was also a big contributor in the paint, with 14 points. Senior Graham Hotchkiss contributed with 5 blocks. Sullivan and Hothkiss both fouled out later in the game. However, like the Wilton game Darien struggled to hold onto the big lead. Due to numerous turnovers, the lead dwindled to 2 points at one point. However, Allam was able to close out the game with his free throws.

“It was a refreshing victory,” Sullivan said. “I really appreciate the fan support we received. It really inspired us to come away with the victory.”

Support the Blue Wave as they take on Westhill at Westhill High School tomorrow (2/16) at 7:00pm.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Thunder Advance to House Finals

Thunder wins and advances to final against Spurs on the court at Middlesex. They beat the Suns on the back of junior Tony Britton in the Monday night (2/14) House Basketball match up.

Spurs Hold Off Lakers 40-38

Spurs hold off Lakers 40-38 to advance to Winners Bracket semi-final in the 11/12 House league. Senior Ben Preston led the team to victory with 22 points in the Valentine's Day game.

Remole Lands Top Wrestling Spot

-By: Frank Lombardi-

Senior Captain Lars Remole won the 2011 Joe Sikorsky FCIAC Wrestling Tournament in the 140lb-weight class against opponent Tyler Arsenault from Danbury on Saturday (2/12) at New Canaan High School. Lars was up 4-0 before he pinned his opponent only 43 seconds into the second period of the finals using a hammerlock – thread the needle combination (skip to 3:25 in the video to see the winning pin). Lars won two of the matches leading to the finals by pins and one by technical fall (a 15 point differential). Lars came 5th in FCIAC’s in the 130lb class as a freshman.

Five other Darien wrestlers placed during the tournament as well. Junior Max Kiplinger placed third at 160lb winning three of his four matches, two of which were pins. Senior Captain Jared Murphy placed fourth in the 189lb class by winning two of his four matches. Junior John Forlivio also placed fourth in the 171lb weight class by wining four of his five matches. Senior Captain Tyler Corcoran came in fifth at the 152lb weight division, winning three of his five matches, and Senior Captain Dimitri Chagares received sixth place in the 130lb weight class, winning two of his five matches.

Overall Darien placed seventh in the tournament led by head coaches Joe Vano and Aide Gaffney. The tournament winner was the favorite, the Danbury High School “Haters”. You can see the entire 2011 Joe Sikorsky FCIAC Wrestling Finals on Monday night February 14th, on MSG Varsity (Cablevision channel 14) at 7:00PM or 10:30PM EST.

Darien wrestlers will compete in the CIAC class L State Championship the following weekend starting on Friday (2/18) at Bristol Eastern High School in Bristol. Those who qualify will attend the CT State Open and New England Open throughout the subsequent weeks.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Girls’ Basketball Comes Back After Two Loss Streak

-By: Lily Boe-

Darien Girls’ Basketball defeated Brien McMahon 40-32 after two successive losses to Wilton and Saint Joes in the DHS home gym on Friday. (2/11)

The girls began with a lack of their usual energy finishing the first quarter down 6-9. Sophomore Meg Marren scored the first basket. Marren and Sophomore Kate Bushell each scored another two points within the last minute of the quarter.

The girls fought back and ended the first half strongly in the lead 19-15. Sophomore Vanessa Budd and Juniors Leslie Yuen and Susan Biggart each stepped up to the free throw line for a set of two foul shots. All three girls made one successful shot. Bushell scored a leading six points in the second quarter while Marren followed just behind with four.

Junior Susan Biggart began the second half with Darien’s first basket. Vanessa Budd made a fast and crowd-pleasing lay-up. The girls finished the third quarter up 30-23.

In the final quarter, Darien and the Norwalk girls aggressively battled on the court, each enforcing full-court press. With the Darien fans nervous in the stands, the girls emerged victorious.

“We all really wanted to break our losing streak, and we put everything we had into the game and got the results we wanted,” Biggart said. (pictured with twin sister, Amy) Biggart also commented on the fact that two essential varsity players were out for the season with injuries: senior captain Nicole Bush and Junior Amy Biggart, Susan’s twin sister.

Marren and Bushell, who each contributed heavily to the final game score, both attributed their success to the momentum that they gained in the second half. “After the second half we just came out strong and hustled,” Marren said. Bushell added, “Hustle is what won us the game.”

The girls’ next game is away at Danbury High School at 7 p.m. on Monday (2/14). Come help support the girls initiate another winning streak!

Friday, February 11, 2011

9/10 House Basketball Playoff Predictions

-By: Matt House Brown-

The thing that the world has been waiting for since the beginning of winter is finally here: the Y House Playoffs. It will be a tough road for whoever makes it, but whoever it is will definitely deserve to wear the blue shirts. And I will enjoy writing about it. If you aren’t in church this Sunday (2/13) you should come catch some of the games on the Middlesex Middle School court. Here are this weekend’s matchups and my humble predictions.

9 AM- (8) Bobcats vs. (9) Nets- Both of these teams have young talent but underachieved in the regular season. Despite the low seeds this game could turn out to be one of the most exciting matchups of the day. Both teams could win, however, the Nets have been throttle in both weeks leading into the playoffs and I think they will be demoralized. Plus, the Bobcats have beaten up on lesser opponents all year and competed against teams in which the Nets were slaughtered. Bobcats win.

Players to Watch: Danny Coyle (Bobcats) and freshman Brad Magnusson (Nets)

10 AM- (7) Wizards vs. (10) Bulls- The Wizards are riding into the playoffs off the win and look to get a streak going against the Bulls. It is hard to not count the Bulls out, but I feel like I need to here. I hope that I am wrong but if the Brunswick twins, the Skolds, show up the Wizards will easily win. But if the Skolds oversleep and miss the game, I’m feeling an upset.

Players to Watch: sophomore Christian Bognar (Bulls) and the Skolds twins (Wizards)

11 AM- (4) Celtics vs. (5) Raptors- I will be the first to admit I love the Celtics. I love the Celtics. However, I see the Raptors coming out with a chip on their shoulders and no sleeves on their arms. The Celtics proved in a win over the Knicks they can play with the best, but showed in a loss to the Heat they can get killed by them too. Raptors win big. Players to Watch: sophomore Nick Pettit (Celtics) and freshman Peter Traver (Raptors)

12 PM- (3) Knicks vs. (6) Hornets- I expect that the Knicks will be revitalized with the return of sophomore Jack Travers. Sophomore Craig Lamantia will also be at his best hungry for a championship. I don’t want to count out sophomores Casey Burke, Carl Stowell, and the Hornets, but I count out the Hornets as a team. Knicks win.

Players to Watch: Criggity Crog (Knicks) and sophomore Carl Stowell (Hornets)

2PM- (1) Bucks vs TBD- If the Bucks play the Bobcats they win… If they play the Nets they win. Player to Watch: the one and only Brunswick sophomore & Bucks superstar Jack Sherwood. (pictured)

3PM- (2) Heat vs. TBD- The Heat will play either the Wizards of the Bulls. The Heat beat the Wizards pretty badly in the regular season, which gives the odds to the Heat in that potential matchup. I look for much of the same unless the Heat chokes.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Wave Hockey Loses Heartbreaker to New Canaan

-By: Sam Nelson-

The Blue Wave Boys Hockey team jumped out to an early lead after two periods, but was unable to keep the New Canaan Rams off the scoreboard on Wednesday (2/9). The Rams defeated the Wave 3-1 at Terry Connors Rink in Stamford. The Rams scored three unanswered goals in the third period. The Wave got on the board early with a goal by junior captain Nick Bruno, and kept that lead through the end of the first as it was 1-0. The second period lacked goals, but was filled with great goaltending by junior Max Rothston. The third period started with an early goal by New Canaan freshman Charley Corcoran. This tied the score at 1-1, and the Rams would not look back as they went on to score two more goals for a 3-1 win. With the loss, the Wave have a record of 7-7-1, with a 4-3 record in FCIAC play. Come watch the Wave’s next game on Saturday (2/12) against Westhill High School at Terry Connors Rink.

Photo: Junior Nick Bruno pictured taking the faceoff

Girls Basketball finishes strongly against Saint Joes

-By: Caitlin Shea-

Darien Girls’ Basketball lost to Saint Joes 42-57 on Tuesday. (2/8) The girls got off to a rough start but outscored Saint Joes in the second.

In the first quarter sophomore Kate Bushell started off strong scoring the first 8 points. Senior Julia Boulton also scored a basket making the score 10-24 Saint Joes at the end of the first quarter.

Sophomore Vanessa Budd led the team in the second quarter scoring a basket. Sophomore Meg Marren and freshman Caroline Zaffino each made one foul shot making the score 14-32 Saint Joes at the half.

Darien was strong in the 2nd half of the game scoring 28 points while Saint Joes only scored 25. Sophomore Meg Marren was the leading scorer in the 3rd quarter with 5 points. Bushell also had a basket.

Darien was especially strong during the fourth quarter netting 20 points. Marren was the lead scorer with 8 points. Freshman Emily Stein was also strong scoring 7 points. Both Stein and Budd sunk 3 pointers. Bushell also contributed a basket.

The next game is Friday (2/11) at 7pm in the Brien McMahon main gym in Norwalk. Come cheer the girls in their fight to qualify for FCIACS!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Girls' Ice Hockey Trumps North Haven

-By: Emily Close-

The Blue Wave Girls’ hockey team came out showing they were ready to play, scoring big in a 9-7 win against North Haven at Darien Ice Rink on Tuesday. (2/8) The first period started out with 2 goals followed by 2 in the second period and 5 in the third. Throughout the duration of the game the Wave kept up a 1-goal lead until the third period where North Haven was up 6- 7. However, the Wave quickly reversed that with a quick goal from senior Ellie Bullitt. Freshman Ellie Bennett had a hat trick as well as junior Sara Shaker (pictured), contributing 3 goals each. Senior captains Ellie Bullitt, Emma Tuz, and Lauren Perkins each had one goal. The girls will take on the next competition against Trumbull on Saturday (2/12) at 7:30 p.m. The game against Trumbull will be an away game, the girl’s next home game will Feb. 18 against Greenwich, don’t miss it!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Jake Weil and Peter McDonough Ink Official Acceptance Letters

By Jay Alter:

When the Blue Wave football team hoisted its FCIAC Championship trophy this fall, many thought that was the pinnacle and the end of the seniors on the team's football career. For Senior Captains Peter McDonough and Jake Weil, their career will be extended by playing in college. Weil, middle linebacker, will be heading off to play at Marist and McDonough, cornerback, at Cornell. McDonough and Weil signed their letters of intent to play college football together in a ceremony alongside coach Rob Trifone (pictured) on Feb. 9. The two recruits capped off a great football season at the high school going 11-2 and making it to the state semi-final and capturing an FCIAC title this fall. Photo Credit: Darien Patch

9/10 Boys House Basketball Rankings: Week 8

-By: Matt House Brown-

In the last week of the regular season there was less competition than usual. Blowouts greatly outnumbered competitive finishes, and the Heat, Knicks, and Bucks all displayed why they have been atop the rankings every week. Going into the playoffs, this is how the league is looking the first week of February.

1. Heat (W, 50-31)- The Heat were unchallenged by the Celtics this week. Yes, the same Celtics that stunned the Knicks last week. This win shows that the Heat are playing at an extremely high level and gives me no reason to lower their rank. The Heat team including sophomore Drew Dirvin (pictured) has averaged a league high 50 points per game, and have not lost since November. In fact, since November, their least margin of victory was 14. This streak of dominance and talent across the board makes the Heat a scary matchup for all comers. Overconfidence and an early season loss to the Bucks are the only chinks in this team’s armor. (6-1)

1. Bucks (W, 51-24)- The Bucks beat up on the Nets this week as Brunswick sophomore Jack Sherwood dropped 22. The Bucks are a well-rounded group with the talent and team defense to win the championship. The most attractive item on the Bucks resume is that they have defeated both the Knicks and the Heat. The Buck’s are less like number 2 and more like 1.1. (6-1)

3. Knicks (W,50-27)- This squad appears to have bounced back from the devastating loss to the Celtics with this big win over the Hornets. Sophomores Craig Lamantia, Patrick Reilly and freshmen Carter Watt are enough to build a solid playoff run. And if sophomore Jack Travers is able to make it back to full health the Knicks, despite two bad losses, are as poised as everyone for a shot at the free T-shirts. (5-2)

4. Raptors (W, 41-24)- The Raptors bulk and great defense make them a contender this season. Despite three losses, this team has be relatively consistent throughout the season and whupped up on the Bulls to close it out. The lack of offense is a little bit concerning but the solid nine point win over the Bucks shows that they can beat, or at least compete, with everyone. (4-3)

5. Celtics (L, 31-50)- The Celtics simply didn’t show up against the Knicks this week. However, the win over the Knicks shows that they can win games if you let them stay in it.

6. Wizards (W, 38-33)- I would have liked to have seen the Wizards have a more dominating performance this week but it looks like the Bobcats came to play. With the Brunswick twins, the Skolds, and sophomore Brian Weil, all in attendance they are a formidable opponent and offer solid competition to all-comers. (4-3)

7. Bobcats (L, 33-38)- The Bobcats fell short this week against the Wizards but still remain above the Hornets because they beat them by 20 points. I can’t see this squad beating anyone at the top of the rankings though. (2-6)

8. Hornets (L, 27-50)- This loss to the Knicks that they are not in the leagues top tier but victories over the Wizards and the Celtics show that they can beat the beatable. (3-4)

9. Nets (L, 24-51)- In my opinion the Nets have not achieved their full potential this season. It could be that they aren’t very good or it could be they haven’t come together as a unit. Either way the Nets need to find themselves to do something in the playoffs. (2-5)

10. Bulls (L, 24-41)- In typical Bulls fashion they decide to pack it in and focus on the playoffs. This whole season they have just been lulling the league to sleep so that they can strike when it really counts. (0-7)

Monday, February 7, 2011

11/12th Boys House Basketball Rankings: Week 8

-By: Darius Majd-

1. Lakers (7-0); LW: 1 – The Lakers strengthened their hold on the number 1 spot simply by surviving; the teams directly below them all lost. The Lakers helped their cause by beating the Thunder (fourth in last week’s rankings) 45-35. But the win lacked some luster due to the absence of the Thunder’s top player, league-leading scorer Tony Britton. Still, a win is a win, and any way you look at it, the Lakers survived the regular season unscathed in a highly competitive league. Because of the shortened schedule, and the Spurs and Thunder missing their best players, the Lakers have not been as tested as some of the other teams. But with speed and ball-skills at almost every position, and elite scorers in juniors Bobby Weaver and Luke Osherow (St. Luke’s junior), this team should like its chances in the playoffs.

2. Mavericks (5-2); LW: 2 – After flying high for most of the season with a prolific offense, the Mavericks have come crashing down just before the playoffs. On the heels of last week’s shocking blowout loss to the Spurs, the Mavericks were routed again at the hands of the Timberwolves, 62-48. Even during their undefeated start, this team was clearly lacking on the defensive end, and this crucial deficiency has been dramatically exposed. With clutch shooters like senior Sam Nelson and Ricky Miller, seasoned senior big men Tyler Pruden and Parker Lange, and 9th round steal Reid Evanich (senior), this is a dangerous team in a high-pressure playoff situation. But right now this group is not playing up to the sum of their parts, and must recapture their hunger for House glory to save their season from bitter disappointment.

3. Celtics (4-3); LW: 5 – It’s time to finally recognize the Celtics as one of the biggest contenders for the House championship. After opening the season with tough losses to the top two teams, the Celtics have rattled off five wins in their last six games, with the lone loss being by one point to the Nuggets, without powerful senior big man Eric Parnon. Granted, the Celtics have face some easier competition during their winning streak, including the winless Trailblazers in this week’s 50-25 victory. But outside of last week’s three point win over the suddenly surging Timberwolves, the Celtics have been quite convincing. Like the Mavericks, this team has tons of experience, and you just get the sense that they will still be around late in the playoffs. The father-son duo of Coach Rogers and senior Evan Rogers have reached the finals in three of their last four seasons, and have been stopped short on all three trips. With former house champion senior Alex Bruno (Evan’s fellow Blue Wave Super Fan, and Partner-in-Crime in all things sports), Parnon, junior point guard Jack Voigt, and proven scorer Gabe “Wade” Bottazzi, and athletic senior big man Sam McCarthy all on the roster, this could finally be the year that the Celtics get over the hump.

4T. Spurs (4-3); LW: 3 – Once again the Spurs were missing senior catalyst Ben Preston, (pictured) and once again, they failed to win without him. But this excuse has become tiresome; depth is an important part of being a good team, and although they are not terrible without Preston, they are not good enough to win a championship without him. Today’s 53-51 2OT loss to the competitive but mediocre Suns is evidence of that. The Spurs played as well as they ever have without Preston, with senior Graham Maybell nailing five 3 pointers despite a twisted ankle. Seniors Alex McGuire and Darius Majd also got in on the action behind the arc, and Andrew Hurn (senior) and Peter Barston (junior) provided scoring on the interior. But the Suns shot even better, torching the Spurs vaunted defense like no one else has. Although Preston will most likely be around for all of the playoff games, one miss could be devastating. As such, the playoff prospects for this team are far from certain.

4T. Thunder (4-3); LW: 4 – With an identical record, and a similar weakness, the Thunder are placed in a tie with the Spurs. The aforementioned weakness – reliance on one player – led to a 10-point loss to the Lakers, as junior Tony Britton and his huge scoring numbers were absent. There is reason to be positive though; despite missing their best player by a wide margin, and generally not playing very well against the top team, they managed to avoid a blowout. The Thunder have only one quality win – a tight victory over the Timberwolves – but they have also been consistent, and consistency will help them in the playoffs, even if the double elimination slightly diminishes the impact of one off game.

6. Timberwolves (3-4); LW: 7 – After quietly toiling at the lower end of the rankings despite being competitive against everyone but the Lakers, the Timberwolves served notice to the league by blasting the Mavericks 62-48. Senior John Foster has flown well under the radar given the caliber of player he is, but he in his team will not be able to sneak up on anyone any more. Despite his scrawny arms and all-around unassuming athleticism, junior Jay Alter continues to be one of the most dependable number two scorers in the league, putting up 21 points this week to upstage his Neirad rival Parker Lange (senior). The losing record is deceiving; three of the four losses have come by a combined seven points – two of the games went to OT, and the other was decided by a last second 3 pointer. But this might also be a cause for concern rather than a reason to be hopeful; tight games are the standard in the playoffs, and the Timberwolves have not shown that they can handle the pressure.

7. Nuggets (4-3); LW: 6 – The Nuggets beat the Rockets 49-41, a so-so win given the competition which is reflected by the fact that they were jumped by the more impressive Timberwolves (the Timberwolves routing them earlier in the season also had something to do with this). But these numbers mislead how close some of these teams are to each other, and the Nuggets have a much better shot in the playoffs than their #7 ranking suggests. KLHT senior Max Reyes is a seasoned veteran, both in the house leagues and on his school’s varsity team. Seniors Justin Pryor and Malcolm Willis have also had plenty of experience, and junior Tucker White is another reliable scoring option who will come in handy when the pressure is ratcheted up.

8. Suns (3-4); LW: 8 – Yes, the Suns 53-51 2OT victory over the Spurs lacks some luster because of the absence of Ben Preston. But this win is legitimate because the Spurs played well in spite of their deficiencies, and the Suns still won. Senior Tommy Farren caused problems all day for the Spurs in transition and when driving the lane, and junior Ari “Gold” Balian drew a number of fouls. But this win was all about junior guards Thomas Carruthers and Billy Seimers. Forgive me if I am not certain about the exact numbers, because the two made so many shots, but each had at least four 3 pointers. At one point in the second half, Seimers his 3’s on three straight possessions, and was denied another the next time down the court only when his fourth shot spun in and out of the rim. Carruthers was even more impressive, knocking down his 3’s from NBA range with perfect form and pinpoint accuracy. Carruthers also had the game-tying jumper with time winding down, and scored the winning free throws in the second OT. Despite their unassuming performance during the regular season, the Suns should have some confidence going into the playoffs because they have come through in the clutch, winning both of their OT games.

9. Rockets (1-6); LW: 9 – The Rocket’s playoff prospects are not great; the 49-41 loss to the Nuggets was the closest this team has come to victory since week 3, when they beat the Trailblazers by six points. The lack of dependable interior scoring, and reliance on fickle outside jumpers are killing this team’s offensive rhythm, and making things all to easy for opponents. The best hope for this team is to make some shots early, and then slow the game down. Unfortunately, this plan is unlikely to lead to an extended playoff run.

10. Trailblazers (0-7); LW: 10 – In past weeks, I have given hope to the Trailblazers by comparing them to last season’s last-place team, which threatened the top teams in the final weeks of their season. But the 50-25 loss to the Celtics puts them two weeks behind schedule if they are to plan a similar turn around. Only once have the Trailblazers stayed within double digits, and only once have they either scored more than 35 or allowed less than 40; essentially the Trailblazers have struggled on offense and defense, and are unlikely to correct both in time for the playoffs. On a positive note, this team does have a tremendous opportunity, as a championship for this group would be perhaps the biggest underdog success story in House history.

The playoffs start 2/13 and the brackets can be found at