HAMPSTEAD —The championship round of the Hampstead Masters Basketball League took place over the last three weeks as rookie Captain Pat Curry's #1 seeded United Business Machines claimed the 2011-2012 title by defeating Captain Craig Wlodyka's #2 seeded L&M Construction, three games to two.
UBM came out and took an early 14-12 lead, and their crisp passing allowed them to expand the lead to 28-20 at the half. UBM seemed to have the game in hand, but L&M came storming back in the third quarter and took a 40-37 lead going into the final frame. UBM was able to bounce back and grabbed back a 5-point advantage with three minutes to go. L&M showed their resiliency as they applied some tough defense to close the gap to one point with five seconds left in the game and on a last second put-back by Fred Malcolm L&M was able to steal the 58-57 win and a 1-0 game advantage. Fred Malcolm led L&M with 14 points with a lot of help from Kevin Young with 12 points, Calvin Coleman 11 points, Stu Erhardt 8 points, Bob Edwards 7 points, and Ross Huntington with 6 points. UBM was led by Matt Gorham's 14 points followed by John Keisling with 13 points, Stan Lewis 11 points, Harry Williams 10 points, Don Bell 6 points, and Kevin Crump with 2 points. UBM led in field goals, 25-14, while L&M led in three-pointers, 7-1, and free throw shooting, hitting 7 of 9 for 77% versus UBM's 4 of 6 for 67%.
The tone of Game 2 was very different from Game 1 as both teams came out playing aggressive defense as L&M took a slim 10-7 lead after the first frame. UBM fought back and turned the tables as they tied the score, 17-17, at the half. The game took a turn for the worse for L&M at the start of the third period when their offensive catalyst Calvin Coleman went down with a knee injury and UBM got hot and took a commanding 35-25 lead and cruised to the 49-30 win and a 1-1 series tie. Stan Lewis led UBM with 16 points along with Matt Gorham with 9 points, Don Bell 8 points, Harry Williams 7 points, John Mayhew 4 points, John Keisling 3 points, and Kevin Crump with 2 points. Craig Wlodyka and Calvin Coleman led L&M with 7 points each followed by Fred Malcolm with 6 points, Kevin Young and Bob Edwards 4 points each, and Stu Erhardt with 2 points. UBM led in field goals, 18-11, and free throw shooting, hitting 7 of 10 for 70% versus UBM's 2 of 4 for 50%. Both teams had two three-pointers.
With their sparkplug Calvin Coleman not playing at full strength, L&M tried to slow the game down in the first quarter, but the strategy backfired as UBM was able to hit some early shots and grabbed and early 14-4 first quarter lead. UBM went cold in the second period, and L&M was able to close the gap, but still trailed, 21-13, at the half. L&M continued to chip away at the lead, and pulled within a basket in the third period as UBM clung to a 32-28 lead going into the final period where they were finally able to put away L&M for the 45-36 win and the 2011-2012 HMBL championship. Matt Gorham led UBM with 11 points with help from Stan Lewis and John Keisling with 10 points each, Harry Williams 8 points, Kevin Crump 4 points and Don Bell with 2 points. L&M was led by Fred Malcolm with 12 points along with Stu Erhardt with 8 points, Calvin Coleman 6 points, Kevin Young 5 points, Bob Edwards 3 points and Ross Huntington with 2 points. UBM led in field goals, 18-14, and three-pointers, 1-0. L&M led in free throw shooting, hitting 6 of 13 for 46% versus UBM's 6 of 14 for 43%.