Womhoops Guru

Mel Greenberg covered college and professional women’s basketball for the Philadelphia Inquirer, where he worked for 40 plus years. Greenberg pioneered national coverage of the game, including the original Top 25 women's college poll. His knowledge has earned him nicknames such as "The Guru" and "The Godfather," as well as induction into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Philly Summer League: Cloud's 20 Points Keeps Gold Clear for First

By Mel Greenberg

If the performances in the Philadelphia/Suburban Women's NCAA Summer Basketball League are any indication for competition out of the local collegiate schools this winter then Saint Joseph's coach Condy Griffin and her staff may be NCAA tournament bound for the third straight season.

The Hawks have been blistering the nets on the various squads they have played in the 13-team league and on Tuesday night three of them hit the nightly performance milestone of 20 or more points, including two of them in the same game.

Incoming senior Natasha Cloud out of Cardinal O'Hara High scored 20 points to keep Gold (7-0) unbeaten and alone in first after holding off winless Royal Blue 79-64 at Kelly Bolish Gym, home of the AAU Renegades in Lower Bucks County.

Jasmine Elum, a 2012 graduate of Bethune-Cookman out of Bodine High added 17 points to the Gold attack.

Royal Blue (0-7), which has the nightly bye on Thursday next time out, was still in condition midway through the second half until Goild pulled away.

Saint Joseph's junior Ciara Andrews out of Cheltenham High had 21 points for Royal Blue as did her Hawks teammate Sarah Fairbanks, a junior, for Hunter Green (4-3) in an 89-37 loss to second place White (5-1), which is also the Division II West Chester squad.

Incoming Saint Joseph's freshman Adashia Franklyn out of West Chester Rustin High added 13 points to Royal Blue's offense.

Maroon (5-2) also kept pace among the standings leader with a 68-61 victory over Navy Blue (2-4).

On a night that longtime league commission David Kessler was in the gym for the first time this season following hip replacement surgery several weeks ago four of the six games were tightly contested highligted by Pink (4-3), which is also the Division II University of the Sciences of Philadelphia (USP) squad beating Red 64-59 in overtime while Orange with two members of Penn's defending Ivy League champions competing edged Sky Blue 73-72.

Purple handed Kelly Green a tough loss 62-59 while Maroon survived Navy Blue 68-61.

Bob Heller of USP again provides extra detail on the Pink game which will be covered in the recaps below.

Return of the Commish

As mentioned, comissioner Kessler was in the gym, and while he was still using a wheel chair to get around he hopes to be back driving himself to the complex in the next week or so.

"It was great being back in the gym," Kessler noted in sending the quick recaps to the Guru for the evening's post-games coverage for the first time this season after co-director Sreve Micheilli, who also referees, had been filling in while the comissioner was sidelined.

"I got a lot of hugs and handshakes wishing me well," Kessler said of his first night that is part of his 20th season organizing league operations dating back to his time working for the Dept. of Recreation.

"I was especially grateful for the huge 'get well' card that so many people signed. It was really sweet considering many were new to the league and didn't even know who I was."

It could be noted that Kessler would not have known many of us for a while immediately after his surgery.

He also reported that the Chestnut Hill Local's Tom Utescher, who also covers and photographs the league, had the same procedure but less intensive and is on the mend.

"I talked to him after Tuesday's games and he is doing well," Kessler said.

Celebrity Mom in the House

While Adashia Franklyn was mentioned in the top of this report, what wasn't said was her mother, all-time Temple great Marilyn Stephens, a former Gratz High star, was on the scene for the first time this season.

"I'm just being a mom," Stephens smiled while holding an iPad and taking video action of the Gold-Royal Blue game.

Having previous coached Division II Cheyney, Stephens was busy urging the Royal Blue squad on from the spectator area.

Ironically, the Guru spoke with Stephens just a few moments before WNBA Phoenix Mercury star Candice Dupree, another former Temple all-time great, was announced as one of the league reserve selections by the coaches of the West Division for Saturday's All-Star game, which will be played in Phoenix, where the Guru will be on the scene.

Rob Knox has a separate post on the reserve picks which is either or below this post, depending how the Guru's summer league report drops into the publishing area, though the intent is for Rob's story to be above this.

As to why Franklyn ended up on Hawk Hill and not on North Broad Street, the Guru knows but you'll have to come back this winter when the collegiate action begins.

Trust the Guru, it is not for any negative reason.

Sewing the Seeds

To help guide the radar to the eight-team postseason playoffs in early August, the standings are set in the way they would be to break ties to determine the participants and the pairings.

At the mnoment, the Tuesday action has resulted in a clear break for the eight if the season ended today, but, of course, the action is either just at the halfway point or a game over depending if a squad has played either six or seven games.

But here is how the seed positions are formed and there is a running grid before the standings so you can see what each team has done against the rest of the competition and there is also a complete list of each night's results below to check scores.

Gold, White, and Maroon are clear-cut 1-2-3 right now. Hunter Green and Pink are tied for fourth but Hunter Green's head-to-head win over Pink earns fourth seed and Pink is fifth.

In a three-way tie for sixth, taking games among the three, though there is not a uniform number in the current exercise, Black, which was idle Tuesday and is also the Division II Philadelphia University squad, is sixth with a 1-0 record beating Orange, which is seventh at 1-1 beating Sky Blue, which is eighth being 0-1 with the loss.

Purple is alone in ninth followed by Kelly Green and Navy Blue tied for 10th but Kelly Green ahead on a head-to-head overtime win over Navy Blue.

Red is alone in 12th while Navy Blue completes the list.

But everyone is very much alive for a playoff slot. Purple is only a half-game behind Sky Blue, the current No. 8, while Kelly Green and Navy Blue are a game back, Red is 1.5 games back, and Royal Blue is 3.5 back with five games left on its slate.

Tuesday's Recaps

Orange 73, Sky Blue 72 --
Penn senior Kathleen Roche kept Orange (3-3) in the playoff hunt with 17 points, including four treys, while her senior Quakers teammate Kara Bonenberger out of Northampton High scored 13 points.

Kara's sister Alyssa, a Division II Kutztown senior, is also on the squad. Amanda Fioravanti, a Saint Joseph's sophomore, scored 14 points for Orange.

Hawks sophomore Jessica Pongonis had 13 points for Sky Blue (3-3), while Megan Gallagher, a recent DeSales grad out of St. Basil, scored 12 points and MaryEllen McCollum, a recent Holy Family grad also out of St. Basil, scored 11 points.

Maroon 68, Navy Blue 61 -- Ryann Fiascki, an East Stroudsburg senior out of Archbishop Carroll had 15 points to keep Maroon (5-2) in third place while Taylor Bryant, a Penn player out of Upper Dublin, scored 12 points.

Kathleen Fitzpatrick, a Saint Joseph's sophomore, scored 17 points for Navy Blue (2-4), hitting five 3-pointers, while Chelsea Woods, an incoming Saint Joseph's freshman, scored 13 points.

Purple 62, Kelly Green 59 -- Samantha Stipa, an incoming Lafayette freshman out of Spring-Ford, had 17 points, while Lindsay Fluehr, a Division III Scranton senior out of Nazareth Academy, had nine points.

On Kelly Green (2-4), which had won two straight, Villanova incoming freshman Alex Louin from Mt. St. Joseph's, scored 18 points, and her future Wildcats teammate Megan Quinn, a sophomore out of Episcopal, scored 13 points.

White 89, Hunter Green 37 -- The West Chester unit stayed a game behind frontrunner Gold, who beat them last week, as Kendall Benovy, a senior, scored 17 points, sophomore Victoria Smick out of Woodstown High scored 14 points, which was also collected by junior Brittany Sicinski out of Downingtown West.

While Sarah Fairbanks' 21 for Hunter Green (4-3) was already mentioned, Erin Fenningham, a Holy Family junior out of St. Basil, scored 13 points.

Gold 79, Royal Blue 64 -- All the details were provided in the opening part of the blog but the outcome is repeated here to keep everything grouped in one place for the recaps.

Pink 64, Red 59, overtime -- Sarah Abbonizio, targeted for 2020 graduation because of the work/study program at USP and is an Episcopal Academy Grad, had 15 points to get Pink (4-3) tied for fourth.

Kaitlyn Schmid, a Devils senior, scored 12 points.

Red (2-5) got 16 points from Tuga Goff, a Rosemont sophomore out of Upper Dublin, while Calypso Carty, a Utica College sophomore out of Central Bucks West, scored nine points.

Now for a more detailed account of the action of this game, here is the report from Bob Heller:

USciences’ seniors Kaitlyn Schmid and Jessica Sylvester combined for six straight free throws in the final 1:31 of overtime as the Pink team (made up of all players from University of the Sciences) defeated the Red team 64-59.

Schmid has 12 points for the Pink squad while incoming freshman Sarah Abbonizio led the team with 15 points. Senior Bella Ross added nine points

Tuga Goff (Rosemont College) led the Red team with 16 points and made one of two free throws with 1.7 seconds left to send the game into overtime and erased a 15-point Pink lead. Calypso Carty (Utica College) chipped in nine points while Oneonta State’s Brianna Spector added eight points.

The Pink team had a 15-point lead 43-28 with 9:35 left in regulation before Red scored 11 straight points to pull within four 43-39 as Goff sank a pair of three-pointers in the run.

Two buckets from Abbonizio with slightly over five minutes to play stopped the run and put Pink back up by eight.

A Schmid triple with 4:05 left increased the advantage to nine. Red then closed out the second period with an 11-2 run, holding Pink to just two free throws (both by Ross) to send the game into overtime.

Red trailed by just one when Goff went to the free throw with 1.7 seconds left, missing the first shot before making the second to even the score.

Pink scored the first seven points of the overtime with senior Brianne Traub (eight points) nailing a three-pointer on the team’s first possession and Schmid knocking down a driving layup on the next one.

Sylvester then made a pair of free throws (her first points of the game) to make the score 60-53 with 1:31 left.

Spector hit a triple to pull Red within four 60-56 before Schmid sank two from the charity stripe.

Lauren Rothfield added a three-pointer for the Red team to make it a one-possession game 62-59 with 34.2 seconds left before Sylvester rounded out the scoring with two more free throws with 17.4 seconds left.

Individual Scoring Performances
(20 or more points)

31 pts. -- Jasmine Elum, Gold (W) vs. Maroon, July 1
27 pts. -- Samantha Stipa, Purple (W) vs. H.G., June 26
26 pts. -- Courtney Brown, Maroon (W) vs. R. Blue, July 2
24 pts. -- Jasmine Elum, Gold (W) vs Hunter Green, June 24
24 pts. -- Erin Fenningham, Hunt. Green (W) vs. N.B., July 1
24 pts. -- Alexis Smith, Gold (W) vs. Maroon, July 1
24 pts. -- Brianne Traub, Pink (W) vs. Royal Blue, July 10
23 pts. -- Lexi Scrivano, Kelly Green (L) vs. White, June 24
22 pts. -- Mariah Powell, White (W) vs. Kelly Green, June 24
22 pts. -- Alex Smith, Gold (W) vs. Orange, June 26
22 pts. -- Brianne Traub, Pink (L) vs. Sky Blue, July 1
21 pts. -- Alex Smith, Gold (W) vs. Hunter Green, June 24.
21 pts. -- Jasmine Elum, Gold (W) vs. Orange, June 26
21 pts. -- Chelsea Woods, Navy Blue (L-OT), vs. Kelly Green, July 8
21 pts. -- Amanda Fioravanti, Orange (L) vs. Maroon,July 10
21 pts. -- Natalie Stella, Pink (W) vs. Royal Blue, July 10
21 pts. -- Sarah Fairbanks, Hunt Grn (L) vs. White, July 14
21 pts. -- Ciara Andrews, Royal Blue (L) vs. Gold, July 14
20 pts. -- Brittany Sicinski, White (W), vs. R.B., June 26
20 pts. -- Lauren Crisler, Gold (W), vs. White, July 10
20 pts. -- Natasha Cloud, Gold (W), vs. Royal Blue, July 14

Running Tracker for Playoff Seeds and Tiebreakers
Placements now reflect seeds for most teams but not all if the season ended today, which it doesn't

Gold (6-0): H.G. (W), Orange (W), Maroon (W), Purple (W), White (W), R.B. (W)
White (5-1): K.G.(W), R.B. (W), Purple (W), S.B.(W), Gold (L), H.G. (W)
Maroon (5-2): Red (W), K.G. (W-F), Gold (L), R.B. (W), S.B. (L), Orange (W), N.B. (W)
Hunter Green (4-3) Gold (L), Purp. (L), N.B. (W), Pink (W), Red (W), vs. Black (W), White (L)
Pink (4-3): Black (W), N.B. (L), S.B. (W), H.G. (L), Orng (L ), R.B. (W), Red (W-OT)
Black (3-3): Pink (L), Red (L), Orange (W), K.G. (W-F), R.B. (W), H.G. (L)
Orange (3-3): Gold (L), Black (L), Purple (W-F), Pink (W), Maroon (L), S.B. (W)
Sky Blue: (3-3) R.B.(W), Pink (L), White (L), Maroon(W), Purple (W), Orange (L)
Purple (3-4): N.B.(W), H.G.(W),White (L), Orange (L-F), Gold (L), S.B. (L), K.G. (W)
Kelly Green (2-4): White (L), Maroon (L-F), Black (L-F), N.B. (W-OT), Red (W), Purple (L)
Navy Blue (2-4): Purple (L), Pink (W),H.G.(L), Red (W), K.G. (L-OT), Maroon (L)
Red (2-5) Maroon (L), Black (W), R.B.(W), N.B. (L), H.G. (L), KG (L), Pink (L-OT)
Royal Blue (0-7): S.B. (L), White (L), Red (L), Maroon (L), BLack (L), Pink (L), Gold (L).

Standings (Thru Wednesday, July 16)

Team, W-L, Pct., G.B., Pts., Opp Pts.

Gold, 6-0, 1.000, --, 473 364
White, 5-1, .833, 1.0, 432 302
fw-Maroon, 5-2, .714, 1.5, 384 245
Hunter Green, 4-3, .571, 2.5, 412 462
Pink, 4-3, .571, 2.5, 394 381
w-Black, 3-3, .500, 3.0, 264 259
Orange, 3-3, .500, 3.0, 278 307
Sky Blue, 3-3, .500, 3.0, 380 317
fl-Purple, 3-4, .667, 3.5, 349 345
fl(2)-Kelly Green, 2-4, 333, 4.0, 236 290
Navy Blue, 2-4, .400, 4.0, 374 379
Red, 2-5, .286, 4.5, 382 435
Royal Blue, 0-7, .000, 6.5, 377 552

fw -- includes forfeit win, fl -- includes forfeit loss

Past Results

Tueaday (July 14) Results

White (D2-West Chester) 89, Hunter Green 37
Gold 79, Royal Blue 64
Pink (D2-USP) 64, Red 59, ovt.
Purple 62, Kelly Green 59
Orange 73, Sky Blue 72
Maroon 68, Navy Blue 61

Black (D2-Phila. U.), Bye

Thursday (July 10) Results

Maroon 53, Orange 47
Sky Blue 59, Purple 36
Kelly Green 59, Red 45
Gold 69, White(D2-West Chester) 47
Hunter Green 51, Black (D2-Phila. U) 43
Pink (D2-USP) 70, Royal Blue 50

Tuesday (July 8) Results

Black (D2-Phila. U.) 58, Royal Blue 56
Kelly Green 74, Navy Blue 70, ovt.
Orange 50, Pink (D2-USP) 49
Sky Blue 52, Maroon 47
Hunter Green 75, Red 60
Gold 77, Purple 57

Wednesday (July 2) Results

Hunter Green 51, Pink 47
Maroon 98, Royal Blue 48
White (D2-West Chester) 59, Sky Blue 48
Navy Blue 78, Red 52
Black 2, Kelly Green 0, forfeit
Orange 2, Purple 0, forfeit

Tuesday (July 1) Results

Hunter Green 69, Navy Blue 59
White (West Chester) 54, Purple 45
Gold 85, Maroon 68
Black (Phila. U.) 54, Orange 38
Pink (USP) 59, Sky Blue 56
Red 70, Royal Blue 57

Thursday (June 26) Results

Red 55, Black 54
White 84, Royal Blue 59
Gold 79, Orange 68
Purple 80, Hunter Green 50
Navy Blue 62, Pink 46
Maroon 2, Kelly Green 0 (forfeit)
Bye: Sky Blue

Tuesday (June 24) Results

Purple 69, Navy Blue 44
Maroon 48, Red 42
Sky Blue 93, Royal Blue 43
White (West Chester) 99, Kelly Green 44
Pink (USP) 59, Black (Phila. U.) 53
Gold 84, Hunter Green 59
Bye: Orange

Looking Ahead

Hunter Green (4-3) and Orange (3-3) will be going into Thursday's 7 p.m. meeting on Court 2 just a half-game apart.

Pink (4-3) can make Maroon (5-2) part of a tie in the upper part of the standings with a win on Court 3, which will be played as the same time as the Hunter Green/Orange matchup.

Maroon (4-2) will look to stay in the uppper part of the standngs in an 8:15 p.m. game when it meets Navvy Blue (2-3) on Court 3.

It's a key game for Kelly Green (2-4) in one of the three 8:15 p.m. nightcaps when it meets Sky Blue (3-3) on Court 3.

Black (3-3) returns to action just a half-game up on its Purple (3-4) opponent at the same time on Court 1.

Gold (6-0) will be a strong favorite to stay unbeaten when it meets Navy Blue (2-4) in the other nightcap.

Upcoming Schedule

Thursday, July 17

7 p.m.

White (5-1) vs. Red (2-5), Court 1
Hunter Green (4-3) vs. Orange (3-3), Court 2
Pink (4-3) vs. Maroon (5-2), Court 3

8:15 p.m.

Black (3-3) vs. Purple (3-4), Court 1
Gold (6-0) vs. Navy Blue (2-4), Court 2
Kelly Green (2-4) vs. Sky Blue (3-3), Court 3

Bye: Royal Blue (0-7)

Tuesday, July 22

7 pm.

Royal vs. Purple, Court 1
Navy Blue vs. Black, Court 2
Gold vs. Sky Blue, Court 3

8:15 p.m.

White vs. Orange, Court 1
Hunter Green vs. Maroon, Court 2
Pink vs. Kelly Green

Bye: Red

Thursday, July 24

7 p.m.

Kelly Green vs. Gold, Court 1
Maroon vs. Black, Court 2
Orange vs. Royal Blue, Court 3

8:15 p.m.

Sky Blue vs. Hunter Green, Court 1
Navy Blue vs. White, Court 2
Purple vs. Red, Court 3

That's it for this report.

-- Mel

- Posted using BlogPress from the Guru's iPad


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