Heuvelton senior guard Nate Mashaw was delighted that Potsdam guard Ian VanWagner accomplished the previously unheard of feat of reaching the Section 1000-Point Club as an eighth grader on Tuesday night in the semi-finals of the Section 10 champions playoff.
But Mashaw was even more delighted that he and his Class D Champion Bulldogs could contain VanWagner’s game-breaking scoring talents gaining a 55-45 win over the Class B Champion Sandstoners. VanWagner entered the game needing 11 points for the milestone and reached it with a 3-pointer from the right corner with 6:09 to play and his team trailing 43-30.
For a third straight sectional game the Bulldogs used an extended trapping zone defense as a key to victory by forcing turnovers, grabbing 14 steals and keeping VanWagner under close surveliance. Guards Nate Mashaw (4 steals, 3 steals), Chris Ashlaw (3 assists, 4 steals) and Jake Venette (3 assists, 2 steals) led the ball-hawking and ball movement and were very prominent in the scoring.
Chris Ashlaw buried three-pointers in the first quarter where Heuvelton took a 15-9 lead and prevented the Stoners from continuing the momentum of overtime upset win over top seeded Gouverneur in the Class B finals.
Mashaw buried three second-half 3-pointers and scored a game-high 18 points leading Heuvelton into the overall Section 10 Championship game on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. at Maxcy Hall against Class C Canton which earned the right to defend overall honors by dispatching Class A Champion Massena 58-30.
The Bulldogs will be looking to reverse as loss to the Bears in last year’s title game.
In between the semi-final games Mashaw was honored as the 2023 recipient of the Joe Jukoski Memorial Award which is presented each year by the NNY Officials Board to the Outstanding Boys Basketball Player in Section 10. The son of Todd and Arelene Mashaw was selected from a group of four highly respected finalists in senior guard Walker Martin of Chateaugay and juniors in guard Tom Peterson of Tupper Lake and forward Tanner Sullivan of Harrisville.
“Winning this award means so much to me. So many great players have won this award and I am feel honored to be included with them,” said Mashaw who is the second Heuvelton player to receive the award joining Josh Tehonica in 1995.
With 1299 career points Mashaw also stands second behind Tehonica (1601) for career boys basketball scoring at Heuvelton.
“Defensively our defense was very good in the first half. We came out in the zone and we stuck with it,” said Heuvelton Coach Josh McAllister who was delighted that Mashaw, a four-year varsity player and two-year team captain, was honored with the Jukoski Award.
“Nate is one of the most driven workers I have ever observed. He also excels in the classroom where he has been named a New York Scholar-Athlete for the past four years, is a member of the National Honor Society and ranks fourth in his class with an average of 95.2,” wrote McAllister nominating Mashaw for the award.
All five Heuvelton starters earned All-NAC West Division Awards and Coach McAllister was honored as Coach of the Year. Chris Ashlaw and Jake Venette joined Mashaw on the First Team Selection and Lucas Thornhill and Connor Phillips made the Second Team. Venette also received the team’s Outstanding Sportsmanship Award.
Chris Ashlaw drained all four of his 3-pointers in the first half where the Bulldogs took a 25-16 lead which they expanded to 36-22 when Mashaw buried a 3-pointer and Connor Phillips converted a 3-point play in the third quarter. VanWagner, who finished 16 points, delivered strong passes throughout the game and earned First All-NAC Central honors. He combined with forward Theo Hughes to score nine and 10 points in the second half but the Stoners could not close inside of 10 points.
“Heuvelton is such a good team. They defended us well with their extended zone and they hit nine 3-pointers. It seemed like everytime they got an offensive rebound they followed it up with a 3,” said Potsdam Coach Justin Todd.
“But we defended well. I told the guys at halftime that even though we were struggling to score that we only gave up 25 points. Theo Hughes had a very good second half for us.”
Connor Phillips tallied nine points off offensive rebounds and post-ups, Lucas Thornhill buried two 3s for six points, Jake Venette contributed five points and Rhys Brossoit (steals) added two for Heuvelton and Trystan Biller grabbed 3 rebounds. Hughes tallied 12 points for Potsdam with inside conversions and Dylan LaMora and Brodie Delaney added six and four.
Eyilayomi Odetoyinbo’s vigilant protection of the rim once again provided an interior anchor for Canton’s outstanding defense. Odetoyinbo blocked 12 shots with six rejections in the first quarter for the Golden Bears who limited Massena to single digit scoring in all four quarters.
“We’re playing the best we have all year,” noted Canton Coach Troy Lassial.
“We’ve been rebounding better as a team down the stretch and that’s led to better scoring,” he added.
The 6-8 Odetoyinbo also played tall on offense scoring 17 points with 11 in a first half where Ryan Jones buried three 3s and scored 11 points. Luke Wentworth and and Elias Snyder combined for 10 and 9 points followed by Vincent Nelson-Fuse (3), Zadok Roiger (3), Oliver Dollman (5), Tallon Green (2) and John O’Neil (2).
Colin Patterson scored 13 points for Massena Brandon Barnes hit two 3s for 6 points.
Canton’s Ryan Jones earned First All-NAC Central honors for Canton and Luke Wentworth made the Second Team. The Massena duo of Colin Patterson and Taylor Mitchell were both voted to the All NAC Central First Team.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.