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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, February 11, 2010

Dutchmen come to life

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– The Dutchmen basketball team did a whole lot of losing prior to Jan. 19. The team has done nothing but win since.

Back on Jan. 19, Guilderland was sitting in last place in the Suburban Council South at 1-7 and 2-8 overall. Since then, the team has strung together five straight wins, good enough for third place with two games remaining.

On Tuesday, Guilderland hosted Averill Park for its Senior Night and it provided a perfect environment for a Dutch win, 66-55.

“I think we really got sick of losing and decided to turn things around,” said senior Nate Sentz, who pitched in 11 points. “And with all the extra support from family and friends tonight, we were confident that we’d get another win.”

The crowd seemed small for Senior Night, but that didn’t stop Guilderland from getting a quick start in the first quarter. Senior Ryan Ochs opened the scoring with a three-pointer and scored eight of his game-high 18 points in the first. The Dutch had an 18-to- 11 lead.

“Everything seems to be clicking right now,” Ochs said after the game. “Everyone on the team is pitching in.”

Guilderland had some injuries earlier in the season, but now everyone is back, except Justin Horne with a broken ankle. Sentz was out three weeks with an ankle injury and Ochs missed three games with a concussion.

“Other players stepped up when we had injury issues,” said Head Coach Ron Osinski. “These guys have played hard every day and continue to improve every day.”

Ochs told The Enterprise that the key to the winning streak is that everyone on the team has raised the level of play. “Everyone is playing great right now,” he said. “We have a working system going.”

The Dutchmen put on a clinic in the second quarter. The team was aggressive on the boards and caused turnovers on defense. The climax came when senior Anthony Gallo got the ball off a steal and fed Sentz with a mesmerizing behind-the-back pass. Sentz went strong to the basket and laid the ball in with a foul.

The Dutch were pumped up and had a 34-to-22 lead going into halftime. The Warriors never recovered, which led to an anticlimactic second half. Gallo had three three-pointers on the night and finished with 17 points.

Tuesday marked the first time Guilderland had scored 60 points all season. The team used to struggle for points.

“We’ve cut our turnovers down and a few more players have confidence,” said Osinski. “Some guys are better on defense and some are better on offense. We’re able to mix it up now.”

Osinski is pleased with the perseverance the team has shown over the last five games as the regular season nears its end. The Class AA sectionals aren’t even a thought yet.

“We have nothing to lose,” Osinski said. “This team could have rolled over and been stuck in last place, but now we could be in the thick of things.”

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