Maranacook graduate Ryan Martin scored his 1,000th career point at Keene State College last week, topping the milestone in less than two-and-half seasons. Martin, who transferred from Division I Maine, is in his final year of eligibility.
This year, he’s averaging 16.8 points a game, with a high of 35 against Plattsburgh State. The game, against UMass Boston, in which Martin scored his 1,000th point, was a close one and only briefly halted to acknowledge Martin’s accomplishment. Keene State ended up pulling out an 80-76 victory after trailing by as much as 13 in the second half.
“He needed 19 (points to reach 1,000) and we needed every one of his 19,” Keene State coach Rob Colbert said.
Colbert said Martin will be honored with a game ball commemorating his achievement at a later game. He’s just the fifth player in the school’s history to top 1,000 points in three years or less. Colbert said stats and honors — Martin was a preseason Div. III All-American selection — matter little to his senior guard.
“I don’t think the kid gives a hoot,” he said. “He only cares about winning games.”
Martin played point guard last season but has moved back primarily to shooting guard. Colbert said Martin is more comfortable at the point but he’ll get more scoring chances at off guard.
“Sometimes if you give the ball up it’s a while before it comes back to you,” Colbert said. “He’s a combo. I’d use him at center if he was a little taller.”
Martin is 5-foot-9 but is able to excel because of his quick release and high-percentage shooting. In fact, Colbert would like to him to shoot a lot more. He’s shoots .522 from the field, .487 from 3-point range and .827 from the foul line. Martin’s free-throw shooting is way down. Two years ago he led the nation in foul shooting, going 96.3 percent from the line.
“It’s making him crazy,” Colbert said. “It’s not like they’re way off. It’s in and outs. We don’t make a big deal about it.”
The Keene State coach said he doesn’t even want to think about the day Martin leaves the program.
“He’s the type of kid that comes along once in your career.” he said. “He’s driven, self-motivated, passionate.”
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The local college basketball teams are either on break or have only one more game until January. here’s a look at how each of them is faring this season:
Colby women: The Mules have played six games against Maine teams, going 4-2, and also lost to Bridgewater and Roger Williams for an overall 4-4 record. Colby is starting two freshmen, including Hall-Dale grad Carylanne Wolfington, who is averaging 7.8 points and a team-high 5.9 rebounds per game. Diana Manduca leads Colby in points per game (13.9) and assists per game (3.1). Waterville graduate Jen Nale is second on the team in scoring, with 8.8 points per night off the bench. The Mules need to get back injured guard Jacky McLaughlin, who missed the final three games before break.
Colby men: The hard-luck Mules are 2-6, but that record could be as high as 8-0. The Mules’ first five losses were all by six points or less. In their most recent setback, a 67-57 defeat at Bates, Colby led by 15 at halftime. Colby doesn’t handle the ball especially well and has struggled shooting 3-pointers (23 percent as a team, which is 311th among the 315 Division III teams in the country). But the Mules are doing well in other areas of the game. Freshman Chris Hudnut leads a balanced offense with 10.5 points per game. One note that bodes very well for the future: Colby’s seven freshmen are combining to average 42.2 points per game.
Thomas women: The Terriers (2-5) are improved, but are probably at least a year and a true point guard away from being a true contender in the North Atlantic Conference. Thomas is shooting 31.5 percent from the floor as a team and was 411th in the country in that stat in the latest NCAA release. Freshman Megan Pelletier, a Messalonskee graduate, leads Thomas in points (17.0), rebounds (7.9), assists (2.9), and blocked shots (2.0). Elizabeth Goodall is averaging 9.4 points per game and shooting 44 percent from 3-point range. The Terriers’ biggest problem is that they averaging nearly three turnovers for every assist.
Thomas men: The Terriers don’t have much size, so they run every chance they get. It’s working well enough that in the latest NCAA stats, Thomas was second in the country with 100.5 points per game (Grinnell is first at 130.5). The biggest reason has been freshman Levi Barnes of Skowhegan, who is averaging 20.0 points in 22.0 minutes per game. The Terriers are 5-2 and will get Jarrad DeVaughn, another high scorer, back for the second semester. Stanley Greene, Jr. (15.5 ppg) should be back from a hamstring injury after the break, and Franklin Salvador (15.1 ppg) is always a threat from outside. Thomas is also 401st among 404 teams in points allowed per game, but the Terriers can accept that as long as they keep winning.
UMaine-Augusta women: UMA’s top three scorers are newcomers: Freshman Arreonte Lee (18.1 ppg, 11.5 rpg), sophomore Allyssa Marson from Cony (17.7 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 5.5 apg), and freshman Corinne Dingley from Mt. Blue (12.5 ppg). The Moose are 5-5, and their opponents are shooting 31 percent from the floor. UMA could use a little more depth. The Moose have been using six players, with starters sometimes playing all 40 minutes. They’ll get a good test tonight against Southern Maine Community College.
UMaine-Augusta men: After a 1-5 start, the Moose have won five of their last six to get within a game of .500 at 6-7. UMA gets the bulk of its scoring from three players: Cony graduates Andrew Pullen (19.4 ppg) and Walker Cooper (16.3 ppg), and Lawrence graduate Keith Chesley (12.5 ppg). The Moose are outrebounding their opponents but otherwise need to improve their defense. UMA defeated Maine Maritime this season, rallying from 18 points down for a 57-54 victory.
UMaine-Farmington women: The Beavers are 1-8 against a tough schedule. Like last season, they play decent defense but don’t make enough of their shots (33 percent as a team). Mt. Abram graduate Kenni Norton leads the Beavers with 11.1 ppg, and there are more winnable games after the break.
UMaine-Farmington men: UMF’s formula is to get the ball in to Maranacook graduate Ben Johnson or out to 3-point shooters. Johnson is averaging 21.8 points and 9.6 rebounds per game, and the Beavers are shooting 35 percent from long range on their way to a 7-1 start. Yusuf Iman (10.4 ppg, 5.6 apg) has been solid as the new starting point guard, and everyone seems to be making a contribution.
Unity women: The Rams are 0-7 and are shooting 36 percent from the field as a team. Candace Robinson (9.6 ppg) and Rangeley graduate Sierra Marchacos are two of the top players.
Unity men: Defense has been an issue for Unity, as the Rams are giving up 88.4 points per game. The Rams are 1-8. Freshman guard Eddie Kopacz is averaging 15.7 ppg and shooting 36 percent on 3-pointers. Another freshman, Jared Straight, is at 14.1 ppg.