Marshall Gives Woodmere The Win
There’s a sense of urgency that’s prevailing right now for the senior laden Lawrence Woodmere Academy. The perennial private school power has tasted success the past two seasons as they’ve claimed the NYSAIS Class A title but fell short in the New York State Federation Tournament to St. Anthony’s last March.
Josh Marshall is one of 11 seniors on the squad and with the window of opportunity closing to win a championship, the forward has lifted his overall game at the right time. He was all over the floor in scoring 34 points to beat Hempstead 83-69 last Sunday at the Elmcor Classic at McClancy High School.
Marshall fell into the trap earlier this season of solely relying on his perimeter jumper, and it wasn’t falling. Instead, he trusted his athleticism and his 6 foot 5 frame to penetrate to the basket and create more scoring changes. And with his confidence growing, the outside shot that wasn’t falling earlier has returned. In scoring 22 of his 34 in the second half, head coach Jeff Weiss, whose team improved to 13-2, raved after the game of Marshall’s talents.
“Josh is an unbelievable athlete. He’s athletic he can score he can rebound. In the last six games, he’s been a monster for us. He’s really starting to push himself to step up for us,” Weiss said.
Marshall is part of a front line that includes all-city player Tyrone Nash and R. J. Rutledge that are all above 6 foot 5 and can be factor on the front line. Weiss says Marshall in particular is starting to reach his full potential.
“He’s a kid who people don’t really know. We have a good balanced team but he helps us and I think he’s one of the best players on the island,” Weiss said. Marshall agreed with his coach.
“My jump shot was erratic. I just wanted to make my teammates better and get back upstate. I just want to get a championship under my belt.” What makes this a balanced team and a threat to head upstate is the overall play of Tyrone Nash, who can switch effectively from taking charge in ballgames and being a supporting player.
Though he scored only seven points against Hempstead, Nash contributed 12 rebounds and four blocks. On other nights he can be a dominating presence with an almost triple-double with 27 points, 15 rebounds and seven steals in a win over Packer Collegiate last Tuesday night.
“I want to do everything,” Nash, who is most likely headed to prep school next year says. “If I score 10 points, 7 points or 15 it doesn’t matter. I want to everything I can do to win.”
Kent Sees The Light
Monsignor McClancy basketball head coach Don Kent, resident of Rockaway Point, is just a tad disappointed with the way his season is going so far.
It got all the more frustrating as McClancy stormed back from a 13 point deficit in the fourth quarter, took the lead with 30 seconds left but fell to 58-57 to Long Island City last Sunday.
LIC guard Steven Marfe’s running 15 foot leaner with 15 seconds left brought the death knell on the Crusaders. Kent gave credit to his team for the comeback but he knows they can’t repeat the lack of effort in the first half tomorrow on McClancy Alumni Night against Nazareth.
“It was frustrating in the first quarter. We scored a total of six points. There was no intensity. They were standing around. They looked like they were sleepwalking,” Kent said.
It’s been a rough start even if the team has Division I prospect Stephen Wood, who lead the CHSAA Class A in scoring last year. St. John’s, Fordham and South Florida are some of the colleges looking to sign him. Wood has been bothered with a troublesome right ankle injury that is requiring physical therapy, even though he suited up to score 25 points in a losing effort.
“It’s getting to me. I know I’m not 100%. I’m usually one of the best defensive players and I’m guarding the best player on the other team and I can’t do that,” Wood says. “It’s frustrating.”
He believes that teammate Nyika Williams, the 6 foot 7 center who becomes eligible tomorrow, will shore up the frontline for the last 11 games of the regular season. McClancy is currently fifth in the CHSAA A South Division.