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Brian Connelly

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January 4, 2005

Camden Prevails



Jay Gomes




NJ Hoops


Kevin Payton

#10 Camden topped #20 Camden Catholic this afternoon 60 - 47 this afternoon at Camden Catholic. Camden was led by NJ Hoops Central/South Jersey December Player of the Month Kevin Payton with 30 points and 9 rebounds. The Minnesota bound Payton shot 4 - 6 from three and added 3 assists and 4 steals.


6 foot 8 Albany bound Sr. Brian Connelly was the lone double figure scorer for Camden Catholic with 27 points and 16 boards.



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From the few notes I've seen Connelly seems to be putting up some big numbers, this time against an always strong Camden Team.

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Those are some ridiculous numbers. Camden is a national player every year. To put those numbers up...oh good lord, I am giddy. Siena can't recruit big men. Looks like, if Covington signs, we will have four pretty good ones for years to come (Wilson, Covington, Connelly, Dyson).

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#20 Camden Catholic beat #30 Woodrow Wilson 78 - 67. 6 foot 8 Albany bound Sr. Brian Connelly led the Irish with 22 points and 10 rebounds. 6 foot 4 Temple bound Sr. Semaj Inge was high for Woodrow Wilson with 24 points and 10 caroms. - NJHOOPS


Connelly goes for 22 and 10 against some pretty good talent. I think with B. Wilson, Lillis, Connelly and Iati (for 3 more years) we really are building a "PROGRAM".


I don't know much about Covington other than he is supposed to be a big time banger which we do need.

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Another win for Camden Catholic


Ahmad Nicholson had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, and Brian Connelly scored 16 points for Camden Catholic in a 69-39 win over visiting Bishop Eustace. Kurt Reinhold contributed seven points and six assists.

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Posted on Mon, Jan. 17, 2005






Basketball Scoring Leaders



Through Saturday.




Player, schoolG Pts. Avg.


Paul Gause, Schalick... 9 298 33.1


Kevin Payton, Camden... 6 192 32.0


Brian Young, Cherry Hill East... 10 308 30.8


Sam McDuffy, Bordentown... 9 226 25.1


Brian Connelly, Camden Catholic... 10 231 23.1


Anthony Benson, Pleasantville... 8 182 22.7


Yahmeen Johnson, Paulsboro... 8 181 22.6


Corey Payton, Burlington Township... 9 194 21.6


Charles Johnson, Lower Cape May... 11 234 21.3


Christian Taylor, Oakcrest... 9 192 21.3


Billy Care, Mainland... 9 190 21.1

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Posted on Fri, Jan. 21, 2005






Rally by Irish averts upset


By Sam Carchidi


Inquirer Staff Writer



Facing a surprising nine-point deficit early in the third quarter, Camden Catholic High went on a 22-0 run and outlasted Paul VI, 84-73, in an entertaining Olympic Conference National Division boys' basketball game last night.


Camden Catholic, using primarily a 2-3 defense, converted six turnovers into 12 points during the spurt.


"We turned our defense into offense," said 6-foot-7 senior center Brian Connelly, who scored a team-high 23 points and pulled down six rebounds.


Camden Catholic (10-2 overall, 5-1 division), No. 7 in The Inquirer's South Jersey rankings, outscored the visiting Eagles (5-5, 1-3), 21-4, in points that followed turnovers.


The Irish committed just seven turnovers - seven fewer than Paul VI.


The Irish withstood a 27-point performance by hot-shooting Paul VI point guard Santini Lancioni, a Triton transfer who was playing his first game of the season.


Lancioni, a junior who shot 9 for 16, including 7 for 12 from three-point range, had to sit out the first 30 days of the season because of NJSIAA transfer rules.


"It's difficult to jump in at midseason and try to become a great player," Paul VI coach Barry Brodzinski said, "but he did a great job."


With Lancioni and Bobby Harper (17 points) hitting from outside and Paul VI getting good inside work from Shauwn Hines, Jason Brogsdale and Brendon Robinson, the Eagles took a 41-32 lead with 7 minutes, 40 seconds left in the third quarter.


Camden Catholic point guard Anthony Matera (14 points, nine assists) then triggered the 22-0 spurt with several slick passes on his team's fastbreak.


Tim Smith (14 points, 11 assists), Connor Crawford (14 points), Ahmad Nicholson (9) and Connelly also played a big role in the turnaround.


"I was very happy with the way the kids responded," Camden Catholic coach Jim Crawford said.


"They didn't get down on themselves; they kept working hard, and I think our conditioning showed."


"We took some bad shots and they got a couple of easy baskets and got their confidence back," said Brodzinski, referring to the 22-0 run.


"And when they get the lead, they're difficult to defend, because they execute so well."


Despite the loss, Paul VI made major strides from its first meeting with Camden Catholic, which won the Dec. 21 game, 73-41.


"We played some of our best basketball of the year tonight, but we're not there yet," said Brodzinski, who had four juniors and a sophomore in his starting lineup.


"Camden Catholic's been doing it for 25 years... and this is only our third year here, and we're playing a lot of young kids. To our kids' credit, they believe in what we're doing, but it takes time."


Camden Catholic shot 32 for 51 (62.7 percent) from the floor, primarily because it received terrific ball movement and set up easy shots.


"We have to do a better job with our interior defense," Brodzinski said. "You don't beat the good teams unless you play good defense."


Notes. Paul VI was 27 for 60 from the floor, including 10 for 21 from three-point range. The Eagles were 9 for 12 from the foul line. Camden Catholic was 1 for 5 from three-point range and 19 for 28 from the line... . Connelly will attend the University of Albany... . Camden Catholic is aiming for its 17th straight 20-win season.


Paul VI17 19 7 30 - 73


Camden Catholic18 14 23 29 - 84


P: Brendon Robinson 5, Shauwn Hines 11, Jason Brogsdale 10, Bobby Harper 17, Santini Lancioni 27, Brian Blumenstein 3.


CC: Brian Connelly 23, Tim Smith 14, Connor Crawford 14, Anthony Matera 14, Ahmad Nicholson 9, Kurt Reinhold 7, Mark McCloskey 2, Anthony Jeune 1.




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Posted on Mon, Jan. 24, 2005






Basketball Scoring Leaders



Through Friday.




Player, schoolG Pts. Avg.


Paul Gause, Schalick... 11 361 32.8


Kevin Payton, Camden... 7 219 31.3


Brian Young, Cherry Hill East... 12 349 29.1


Sam McDuffy, Bordentown... 12 285 23.7


Brian Connelly, Camden Catholic... 12 280 23.3


Anthony Benson, Pleasantville... 8 182 22.7


Yahmeen Johnson, Paulsboro... 10 224 22.4


Christian Taylor, Oakcrest... 12 258 21.5


Charles Johnson, Lower Cape May... 13 276 21.2


Corye Payton, Burlington Township... 11 232 21.1


Semaj Inge, Woodrow Wilson... 10 208 20.8

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Posted on Fri, Jan. 28, 2005






Payton, Panthers are again too much for Irish


The Camden senior guard put up 23 points in the 68-62 win over Camden Catholic.


By Pete Schnatz


Inquirer Suburban Staff



For Kevin Payton, there's nothing like the thrill of the "oop."


Camden's sensational senior guard put on a display yesterday that brought the home fans dancing out of their seats and enabled the fourth-ranked Panthers to defeat No. 6 Camden Catholic, 68-62.


While he totaled 23 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and four steals - including an array of jaw-dropping moves - the play that pleased Payton the most came with just over two minutes remaining in the game.


Sensing that Camden had finally seized control of the see-saw contest, the Minnesota-bound recruit looked to end the physical affair with a bit of flair. Stopping a step above the key in the Panthers' end of the court, Payton launched a no-look alley-oop pass that teammate Teron Murray (12 points, nine rebounds) slammed home for a 68-55 lead.


"I enjoyed that. It was like an exclamation point on the game," Payton said. "I like assists, and I prefer the 'oop,' because it gets the crowd hyped up."


The clash between Olympic Conference National Division heavyweights didn't really need any extra spice.


Camden Catholic (11-3 overall, 5-2 division) played with a sense of urgency, having already lost, 60-47, at home to Camden (10-0, 6-0) earlier this month.


The Irish relied on their go-to player early on, and 6-foot-6 senior forward Brian Connelly came through with eight points in the opening quarter to help his team stay within striking distance. After falling behind by 10 at the half, coach Jim Crawford's crew crawled back into contention with a balanced and selfless effort as all five players on the court contributed at least one basket in a 25-13 third-quarter blitz.


But, even while the Irish were sharing the ball, Connelly (12 points) and Ahmad Nicholson (eight points, eight rebounds) were getting into foul trouble. And Payton was keeping his suddenly tentative teammates afloat by scoring 11 in the third period.


"That wasn't our style of ball," Payton said of the second-half lull. "I tried to get my teammates involved, but I also kind of took it on myself to get us through."


Even with Connor Crawford snaring 16 rebounds and picking up 13 of his 17 points over the final two quarters, the Irish couldn't quite solve Payton or sustain a consistent attack.


It didn't help when Connelly, having committed his fifth personal, went to the bench for good with 3 minutes, 33 seconds remaining in the contest.


Camden also made it difficult for the Irish to find a rhythm from the perimeter, as coach Clarence Turner employed a box-and-one defense to keep sharpshooter Anthony Matera (10 points, five assists) off balance throughout the game.


"I give them credit. We had a good run there in the third quarter, but their defense made it difficult for me to get a decent look" at the basket, Matera said.


And while the Panthers received significant contributions from Leroy Carstarphen (six points, 16 rebounds), Jamar Colon (13 points, six rebounds) and Tyrese Gacutan (nine points off the bench), Matera knew which player merited the most credit yesterday.


Having seen Payton torch the Irish for 30 points in the first meeting, Matera simply shrugged and said, "That's why he's one of the top players in South Jersey."


Camden Catholic16 9 25 12 - 62


Camden20 15 13 20 - 68


CC: Brian Connelly 12, Ahmad Nicholson 8, Tim Smith 8, Connor Crawford 17, Anthony Matera 10, Kurt Reinhold 7.


C: Leroy Carstarphen 6, Jamar Colon 13, Kevin Payton 23, Tim Stewart 5, Teron Murray 12, Tyrese Gacutan 9.




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Irish defeat Wilson again


Wednesday, February 2, 2005


Camden Catholic pushes streak vs. Tigers to 28


Courier-Post Staff




It was a test of which team had the most desire and resilience to bounce back from a loss in its previous game.


Camden Catholic High School had lost to Camden 68-62 Thursday, and Woodrow Wilson had been spanked by nationally ranked St. Patrick of Elizabeth 90-65 Saturday.


So Tuesday was bounce-back day, but only one team celebrated it - Camden Catholic.


The Irish led from start to finish in the Olympic Conference National Division game and wound up with a 79-66 victory over the Tigers.


Adding insult to injury, it was the 28th consecutive victory over Woodrow Wilson for the Irish, 12-3 and ranked No. 6 in the Courier-Post Top 20.


"The last time we lost to Camden, we came back with a seven-game winning streak," said Camden Catholic coach Jim Crawford, wearing a wide grin and probably inwardly hoping for a repeat occurrence.


"Fortunately, the kids didn't let the loss to Camden disturb them. They played hard - a sign of a team that cares. I'm sure they were a little disappointed with the Camden outcome."


Catholic has one game remaining before Saturday's cutoff date for the state tournament - Bishop Eustace on Thursday.


The Irish could finish 13-3 and wind up seeded third or fourth and maybe earn a home game. A loss against the Crusaders might put them on the road in the first round of the Non-Public A bracket.


Brian Connelly was the biggest weapon against No. 7 Woodrow Wilson, pouring in 34 points. He scored 17 in each half and also came up with a strong game off the boards.


"It was a tough loss to Camden," Connelly said. "We knew we had to come out strong. It worked for me. Everybody did their job. Scoring, rebounding, setting picks, dishing off and running the floor. I thought we stepped up in every phase."


Guards Tim Smith and Anthony Matera earned special mention from Crawford for their performances in backcourt.


"Those two kids stepped up today," he said. "They handled the pressure real well and that was important in helping us get off to a good start."


Connelly also complemented the backcourt duo.


"In the beginning, teams put pressure on us and created turnovers," Connelly said. "Tim was new but he has come along to a point where he is helping us offensively and defensively."


Smith finished with 14 points and Matera eight - all in the first half when Camden Catholic raced out to a 40-26 lead. Smith had 10 of his points in the second half. Connor Crawford had 13 for the Irish.


Wilson, which fell behind early and stayed there, was sparked by Semaj Inge's 27 points - 20 coming in the second half. Asa Houston scored 10 points in the first quarter and finished with 14. James Inge chipped in with 12 points but the Tigers got little else in the way of sustained scoring.


Camden Catholic's domination didn't bring out the best of the 9-5 Tigers.


"Oh, these kids know about the losing streak to Catholic," said Wilson coach Bob Green. "I think it's even become a mental thing. We certainly can play better than we did today."




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