Lions Effort Falls Short To Pelicans on Senior Day

PARK SLOPE, BK-Entering their final game of the regular season, Berkeley Carroll had an opportunity to clinch second place in their division. Ultimately, the task proved too tough to accomplish. Despite a yeoman effort, the Lions fell short to the Pelicans 79-60 on Senior Day at a loud BC Athletic Center in Brooklyn. The defeat was technically their first on home court, dropping them to the third seed for next week’s ACIS playoffs.

The game was much closer than the final score. After getting blown out at Packer’s gym, Berkeley Carroll was motivated to settle the score. Before they tipped off against their closest rival, coach Carmine Giovino honored two outstanding seniors for their dedication to the basketball program. That included four-year Lion Dondre Benson, who’s played every role for a proud coach who praised his student athlete’s commitment on and off the court. The team oriented Benson was presented with a bouquet. Even more emotional was honoree Josh Rosas. The senior missed the entire season due to injury. It didn’t stop him from supporting his teammates every step of the way. As was noted in a previous post, it’s never easy to miss significant time. It speaks to Rosas’ character.

A great presentation was followed by some great basketball. Neither side gave an inch in an ultra competitive first quarter that may as well have been confused for a playoff game. The battle level was intense and the pace frenetic. Due to Packer’s length, Giovino started junior Josiah Murrell to offset the Pelicans’ biggest edge. It proved to be a wise move with Murrell scoring six of his eight early. He had a put back and scored off a couple of nice passes, including one from sophomore Shawn Hicks. Hicks delivered a big game, pacing the Lions with 27.

The bulk of the scoring came from Murrell, Hicks and junior Shane Pearley early. They combined for 15 of the Lions’ 17. Packer’s size proved to be a problem. It took a while for junior Feldman to get going. Once he settled in, it was an uphill climb for the Lions, who were pulverized on the glass. Feldman topped all scorers with 35 and pulled down nearly 20 rebounds. He only got five in the first. Other teammates were involved, including Miller who dialed up long distance. He finished with 14 including an energizing jam off a steal that got the Packer side going.

Trailing by four, a determined Pearley scored the last four on a couple of strong drives to even the score at 17 after one. Following a Pelicans’ mini-run at the start of the second stanza, the Lions came right back thanks to a hoop from sophomore Chris Harper and a Ryan Hobbs free throw. The trouble with Packer is they’re very dangerous. Two consecutive three’s restored the lead to six (29-23). But the Lions hung in thanks to a 6-2 spurt to crawl within 31-29 with two minutes to go in the half. Pearley and Hicks hit from the field and Hicks added a pair from the line.

Even though they were allowing Feldman to score at will in the paint, Berkeley Carroll was right there. But before they got comfortable, Packer erupted to score the final seven. It was highlighted by a three before the buzzer that extended the lead to nine (38-29).

Packer came out looking to bury the Lions. They scored the first four to open up a 13-point lead. However, Hicks answered with five straight. He hit a step back trey from the left key and made a difficult leaner off a wild sequence to pull Berkeley Carroll within five (42-37). A Feldman three-point play restored Packer’s lead to eight. Again, the Lions didn’t back down. Hicks scored on a scoop to the hoop and Pearley followed with a fancy finish to make it 45-41.

If there was a turning point, it was when Murrell was called for an intentional foul. Another Feldman bucket put the Pelicans up six. Following a BC turnover, Feldman had a breakaway. But Murrell hustled back to foul him. However, the officials felt Murrell gave him a little extra resulting in the intentional which Giovino protested. But the lead ref gave a detailed explanation, ending the dispute. When the dust settled, Feldman drained a pair and then inflicted damage by scoring on another put back to turn it into a four-point possession. Just like that, the Lions trailed by 10 with 2:51 left in the third.

A Hicks long range bomb helped the resilient Lions cut it to seven. Every time they got close, Feldman answered. A 5-0 run included a driving hoop inside to restore order. Packer led by a dozen (58-46) after three.

Berkeley Carroll wasn’t done. They twice cut the deficit to six. Freshman Jimmy Council (11) scored from 10 feet. Hicks had another tough bucket to help the Lions cut it to 63-57. That was as close as they got. Packer went on a 9-1 run pushing the lead to 14 (72-58). Feldman scored six and Miller hit from downtown. It was enough to finally put the pesky Lions away.

The question is will it be the final time they see them. If the Lions can take something out of the game, it’s that they never quit. They’ve been a tough bunch all year. Now, it’s about raising their level in the postseason. A team that came together under Giovino and assistants Terrence Caufield and Reed Morgan should be ready. We’ll see if they can deliver under pressure.

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Lady Lions win, Valiant Lion effort falls short

PARK SLOPE, BK-It was a busy Friday at the BC Athletic Center in The Slope. Following the past two days of snow outs, the Berkeley Carroll School returned to hoops action with a pair of games.

Both the Varsity Girls and Boys took the home floor without any delays. While it was a good day for the Lady Lions who posted a 45-27 league win over St. Ann’s, the Lions also took something positive out of a 58-45 loss to defending champ Dwight. They’ll look to build on an inspired effort that nearly produced the upset against a bigger opponent who boasted a 6-8 center that scored nearly half Dwight’s points, netting a game high 27.

Despite the lack of size, first-year coach Carmine Giovino’s club played arguably their best game of the season. That it came on the heels of Tuesday’s bitter disappointment to St. Ann’s speaks to the character of the undersized Lions, who continue to plug away minus floor general Joe Longo.

Early on, it looked like Dwight would have its way starting with an open trey from the wing and surging out to an 8-1 lead. But Berkeley Carroll hung around thanks to solid play from junior Cole Kitchen and freshman Shane Pearley. Everytime Dwight looked ready to run them out of the building, the Lion duo stepped up with huge baskets that spurred their teammates on.  It was last year that they were humiliated at home by the same league rival. Yesterday, there would be no replay with the gritty Lions trailing by nine at the half.

Though Dwight’s center scored 20 in the first half, the Lions weren’t intimidated taking the ball right at him in a strategic second half that saw the Brooklyn hosts run off the first three hoops, igniting the crowd. In particular, Kitchen tormented Dwight with strong finishes on his way to a season high 16. The southpaw shooting guard also drained a couple from the outside, breaking out of a slump. With Dwight locking down on Pearley who netted 10 of 11 in the opening 16 minutes, Kitchen got help from junior backcourt ‘mate Adam Kochman. Another player who hasn’t scored as much this season while stepping in to run the offense stepped up by sinking four treys, including three big ones in the second half.

Three separate times, Kochman dialed long distance cutting Dwight’s lead to seven. Combined with tremendous defense that limited the big man’s touches, it was the Lions who had many believing they could string the upset entering the final stanza. By getting the Dwight center in foul trouble and holding the Manhattan school to one and done, Berkeley Carroll was relentless. The havoc forced Dwight to call a timeout in which their coach laid into them, asking if his team ‘could match their [Lions] intensity.’

Despite having their lead sliced to five twice, Dwight responded with timely buckets, including a huge one from their senior point guard who’s led them to three consecutive ACIS championships. That kind of mettle is what makes them such a thorn in the side. They entered with just two losses in league play missing two starters. 

BC never gave up getting a big hoop from sophomore Dondre Benson and a pair of free throws from Anthony Spina. Ultimately, Giovino’s crew had to put Dwight on the line the final two minutes. Though they rarely made two in a row, it was still enough to hold off a gutsy effort from the guys in home white with maroon lettering.

The kind of game that you can hold your head high, carrying momentum forward. That’s what the Lions must do entering another big week.

In the first game, St. Ann’s was no match for the Lady Lions who used 13 points from Sarah Paller along with 11 from senior Keyanka Bailey to build a 35-12 halftime lead. Paller hit from downtown twice on the right wing and Bailey got her points in traffic. Backcourt ‘mate Tess Salvatore contributed five of her seven in the opening 16 as the trio combined for 29 of their 35.

Second year coach Morgan Sevigny emptied the bench, giving Olivia Saleh key minutes. The daughter of assistant Anthony Saleh made Dad proud by having a nice finish and playing solid ball, including a couple of steals and near misses.

Junior starter Olivia Wilson played her usual spunky D, wreaking havoc while also helping Bailey and eighth grade phenom Courtney Bowen on the glass. Wilson converted a lay-up and sophomore teammate Morgo Miller also finished twice as the Lady Lions spread the wealth. Wilson also had a pair of nifty set ups for Bowen, who came off the bench for half a dozen before turning her ankle. Her status is unknown for Monday.

While it was a trying day for St. Ann’s, they never stopped competing for their demanding coach, who got a solid effort from his sophomore point guard. She paced them with 12 including seven from the charity stripe. A better fourth quarter allowed them to make the score respectable.

For Sevigny’s club, it was their second consecutive win- going two-for-two this week after also posting a seven-point win at Evangel Christian. Another important week awaits as they look to finish strong in February.

Walter Paller’s JV Boys will also return to action  after having a double at Packer postponed due to the latest snowstorm that dropped between 16 inches and 19 in the tri-state area. It’s all part of another big week on the court for Berkeley Carroll athletics.

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“Heart”

“Heart”

by Derek Felix AKA D Flex

 

I see you fight everyday
Battling to make shit go your way
There’s so much I admire about you
You’re a road warrior who stays true

Even as it sometimes hurts to see
You go on as if it were easy
When that’s the farthest thing from the truth
We both know we got the proof

Sometimes, I want to go back

Then maybe I could change it get back on track
Watching you sometimes killed me inside
And I’d keep the pain buried deep inside

But you never changed despite everything
You really are a mockingbird with strong wings
A defiant champ that never gives in
It’s at the game of life that you win

All heart
Is what you are
That big heart
Makes you a star

Everyone sees it whenever you come
Your gift makes it that much more fun
No wonder we always want you around
It’s not hard to admit why it gets me down

Because you’re my best friend forever
We’re united in a bond for ever and ever
When we talk your words mean plenty
Fun times shared oh so many

Yet I wish there were more
Just to see you happy like a lion you roar
When I drive alone, I recall cool trips we took
Where time stood still and you had that look

The same one when you were just a young pup
It was like a dream only I woke up
You’ve grown into a great man
One who’s my hero no matter the plan

All heart
Is what they all see
The biggest heart
My best friend you’ll always be

 

Dedicated to the best person I know one with the biggest glow in this show <3

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“No Panic”

“No Panic”

by Derek Felix AKA D Flex

 

It’s a whole new dawn
that makes it all worthwhile
finally the tension is gone
and i can relax and smile

Fought through a tough battle
that took a lot out
it’s nice to be back in the saddle
instead of stuck with doubts

It was my personal hell for a long time
that had me in neutral
now i can see clearly the design
no longer down for the count playing the fool

Then, every day was a struggle
with no feeling or purpose
the anxiety had me seeing double
making me feel like a circus

Now i’ve changed for the better
finally understanding why
more focused on being a go getter
no longer feel like i’m gonna die

My journey hasn’t been easy
but i’m more confident today
making me happier and less queasy
doubt’s gone and i know what to say

You gave me warmth like the sun
and the strength to go on
must be cause you’re a special one
i don’t fear being wrong

No panic No panic
From Flex anymore
No panic No panic
I’m a lion or tiger hear me roar

It’s great to be in control
Things have slowed down to an easier pace
Time to get on a roll
put on a smile and no longer race

It used to be fear would creep in
Playing around in my head
Was as punch drunk as too much tonic and gin
Negative thoughts dancing everywhere as i lied in bed

I wondered what i’d done wrong
would it ever stop
felt like an irritating gong
That had no intention of closing shop

A year ago i was completely lost
Spiraling downward and out of control
Days just drifted getting tossed
Even Woodstock didn’t help taking a toll

When we got home it had to change
I was ready to face shit head on
And ever since I’ve turned the page
Proving that I’m strong

As i reflect the feeling is back
Edge and purpose every day
Even going oldschool on the track
Damn right I’ll make this go my way

No panic no panic
From Flex today
No panic no panic
I’m Sinatra doing it my way

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