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Balanced Attack Buries Islanders

January 19, 2017
Etienne B Basketball 2016

Etienne in action last season vs. Shelter Island (PC: Bruce Jeffrey)

Yesterday evening the boys’ basketball team made the 105-mile round trip to Shelter Island, coming away with a 68-42 win.

For the second game in a row, five Bears scored in double-figures as Jyles Etienne (12), Harry Zhu (12), John Eshirow (12), Mac Bohuny (11), and Seamus Scanlon (11) provided a pick-your-poison attack for the Indians to deal with. Etienne also pulled down 12 rebounds for his second straight double-double.

The Bears jumped out to a 21-9 lead after the first quarter, then stretched the advantage to 42-21 at the half.The Bears carried a 31-point edge into the fourth quarter where the Islanders outscored the Brook 12-7 over the final eight minutes.

The Bears, now 1-2 in League VIII after losses to Greenport and Pierson, head to The Hive at Bridgehampton for a Friday night match-up with the 3-0 Killer Bees.

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Bears Win Overtime Thriller over Rancho Solano

January 17, 2017

 

On a frigid Saturday night the boys’ basketball team heated up Swanson by winning an overtime thriller over Rancho Solano Prep, 68-65.

The Mustangs, out of Scottsdale, Arizona, made the trip east to play their sister school, Leman Manhattan Prep, and scheduled the Bears to add a second game to their east coast swing. Despite their unfamiliarity with their new opponent, the Bears came out firing, turning in one of their best individual quarters of the season. Seamus Scanlon opened up the scoring with a 3-pointer on the first possession, then followed two possessions later with an acrobatic layup while drawing a foul to give the Bears an early 6-4 edge and ignite an 8-0 run. Jyles Etienne followed with a hook in the lane and Mac Bohuny capped the spurt with a 3-pointer to give the Bears a 12-4 advantage. A Bohuny 3-point play pushed the lead to 15-5 before back-to-back drives by Harry Zhu and Etienne extended the lead to 19-7. Rancho responded with a quick 5-2 run, but the Bears closed the quarter with five straight points thanks to a Zhu 3-pointer and a layup from John Eshirow to take a 26-13 lead after the first.

The Blue and White lead swelled to as much as 16 points early in the second quarter after an Etienne putback, but the Mustangs began to find their offensive rhythm and ratcheted up their defense behind the impassioned pleas of head coach Aaron Trigg. Rancho closed the half on a 9-4 run, thanks in part to five free throws, to trail 35-24 at the break.

Rancho continued to turn the tide as the second half began, quickly cutting their deficit to just six points after a 7-2 spurt. Scanlon responded with a key 3-pointer that pushed the lead back to 40-31. After a Mustang basket, a Zhu 3-pointer and an Etienne layup extended the lead to 45-33. Rancho clipped their deficit back to eight, but an Eshirow bucket and a pretty floater from Brandon Providence gave the Bears a comfortable 51-39 edge heading into the fourth.

The Mustangs showed their mettle over the final eight minutes by scoring clutch baskets and forcing the Bears into numerous turnovers. Rancho carved the Bear lead back to eight in the early moments, but a Bohuny 3-pointer left the Brook ahead 56-45. Rancho then reeled off their largest run of the game, a 9-0 stretch that left them down just 56-54 once the dust settled. Despite the unlikely turn, the Bears’ confidence never wavered. Etienne followed with a free throw and Bohuny notched a 3-point play on the next possession to give the Blue and White a 60-54 cushion. But on the ensuing possession Rancho turned in their own 3-point play and then followed with a 3-pointer to knot the game at 60-60. The Mustangs capped the 8-0 run by taking a brief lead, 62-60, off of a great cut and layup. On the Bears’ next possession Zhu’s layup attempt rolled tantalizingly off the rim but Eshirow, in his first of several heroic moments down the stretch, gathered the rebound and laid it in to tie the game at 62-62. Both teams had chances to win the game in regulation, but could not convert, ushering in an overtime period. The Bears misfired on their possession with 40 seconds left, then Rancho missed the front end of the 1-and-1 with 23.1 seconds remaining, and the Bears missed a shot at the buzzer to send the game to a four-minute extra period.

The Brook never trailed in overtime. Etienne continued his best performance of the season, finishing through a foul to give the Bears a 64-62 edge. 3-pointers on two consecutive possession rimmed out for Rancho, but they halved their deficit on a free throw midway through the frame. On the ensuing possession the Bears broke the Mustangs’ full court press when Providence found Scanlon who converted an acrobatic up-and-under layup to give the Bears a 66-63 edge. Despite the raucous environment, Rancho refused to be rattled, scoring on a putback with 20.3 seconds left. Clinging to a one-point lead the Bears took the ball out of bounds under their own basket. After several attempts to get the ball in bounds, the Bears turned it over, eliciting a collective gasp from the Swanson crowd. A Mustang corralled the loose ball and elevated to shoot from just outside the paint when Eshirow wrested the ball away to preserve the lead with 6.6 seconds remaining. After drawing a foul, Eshirow furthered his heroic effort by draining both free throw attempts to give the Brook a 68-65 lead. The Mustangs’ attempt to extend the game found only iron and the Bears escaped with a thrilling victory.

Etienne turned in one of his finest performances of his three-year career, leading the Bears with 19 points and 16 rebounds. Bohuny (13 points), Eshirow (12), Scanlon (11), Zhu (10), Providence (2), and Emil Vaughn (1) rounded out a very balanced scoring attack.

The Bears return to action on Wednesday night at Shelter Island.

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Leung Wins Long Jump at Art Mitchell Meet

January 16, 2017
Leung Track 2017

Leung shows off her hardware after the win

Yesterday afternoon Francine Leung won the sophomore long jump at the Art Mitchell Class Meet held at Suffolk Community College West.

Leung glided a distance of 15′ 6″ to claim the title by a comfortable three inches in a field of 26 jumpers.

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Girls Sophomore Long Jump Top 5 Results

  1. Francine Leung – Stony Brook – 15-6.00
  2. Deonna Beard – Brentwood – 15-3.5o
  3. Arianna Chavez – North Babylon – 15-2.00
  4. Ali Hardie – Connetquot – 14-11.75
  5. Hannah Harrington – Kings Park – 14-9.25

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Odom Leads Astana over Novgorod

January 13, 2017
Odom Astana

Odom slams home 2 of his 15 points on Sunday

On Sunday, Rod Odom ’09 scored 15 points, including two emphatic dunks, to lead Kazakhstan’s BC Astana over BC Nizhny Novgorod of Russia.

The former Bear shot 7-for-14 from the field, pulled down 5 rebounds, and dished out 2 assists to help Astana to a 93-84 win, breaking a two-game losing skid.

Odom is currently 4th on the team in points per game (11.5), 2nd in rebounds (5.2), and 2nd in steals (1.5).

Odom and Astana return to the court on Sunday vs. BC Khimky Moscow.

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BC Astana

Swimmers Sink North Babylon

January 12, 2017
B Swimming 2016

PC: Bruce Jeffrey

Yesterday afternoon the boys’ swim team earned its first win of the season in a 51-42 victory over North Babylon, a Class AA school with over 1,100 students.

The Bears had won six individual events including two by freshman Hunter Markowitz who took the 200 freestyle (1:59.43) and the 100 breaststroke (1:09.96). The other individual winners were John Zhou in the 50 freestyle (26.26), Konstantin Asam in the 100 freestyle (1:02.33), Leo Hsu in the 500 freestyle (6:43.86), and Jack Thiele in the 100 backstroke (1:08.52).

The Bears return to the water on Friday afternoon in a home meet with West Islip.

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Memories are Made of This: Losing a Job, Finding a Friend and a Career

January 6, 2017
Gill

Jerry Gill in 1957

Here is the eighth installment of recollections from D. Bruce Lockerbie.

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In 1957, sixty years ago this spring, Frank Gaebelein had hired five new faculty members for the academic year 1957-1958. In alphabetical order, we were Douglas Burton, Jerry Gill, Donald Jones, D. Bruce Lockerbie, and Malvin Tjornholm. As a group, we were as green as grass.  Believe it or not, I was the veteran, the experienced pro, having taught and coached for a year at Wheaton College; the other four were raw rookies. Apart from our youth-in-common (each of us barely old enough to vote!), we were as diverse as the School itself, then opening for its 36th year. We had come from upstate New York, the West Coast, Indiana by way of Texas, Brooklyn by way of Illinois, and Staten Island. Four of us were newly married, the fifth (Don Jones), a bachelor eager to change that status; one had already had a child. Burton, Jones, and Tjornholm remained in abbreviated terms of service; Gill had a special arrangement for a limited two or three-year tenure while attending seminary; only the Lockerbies settled in for the long haul.

Early on, Lory and I connected best with one couple, Jerry and Janet Gill, whom we met before the others had arrived at the School. One night in late August 1957, before we had occupied our assigned apartment in Hegeman Hall, my wife and I were awakened in our temporary quarters in the Infirmary (now the Health Center) by voices and dropped luggage and a baby’s crying. Past midnight, someone else was being moved into the rooms upstairs. The next morning, I met an energetic personality who identified himself as Jerry Gill. With the Stony Brook Assembly’s season ended, he was prowling the deserted campus in search of someone who could ease his confusion about where he was and when business would commence. His story spilled out in his rapid-fire manner: He and his wife Janet had met at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, where he had been a multi-sport athlete and a late-blooming scholar. In fact, he had just completed a master’s degree in philosophy at the University of Washington, in his hometown of Seattle. Next stop was to be a degree at The Biblical Seminary in New York (now New York Theological Seminary). Needing both a place to live and employment to sustain his family—but with a profound absence of knowledge of East Coast geography—Gill had responded to a notice of a position available at a boy’s boarding school, also in New York. Without checking an atlas, he had applied, and FEG had hired him to teach Bible and coach a sport or two… but about 60 miles east of the Seminary and 90 minutes by train—a fact he and his wife and their infant son had discovered only upon touching down at the airport and schlepping by train to the Stony Brook depot. Arriving long after dark, they had walked up Chapman Parkway to the first signs of life in the windows of Grosvenor House and surprised the Headmaster, who escorted them to the Health Center.

I learned all this narrative with its complicated history in a rush of sentences accompanied by dramatic gesticulations and hearty laughter that took far less time than the paragraph above might suggest. Jerry wasn’t distressed or unnerved in the slightest; he simply wanted to know where they had landed and when the vacant spaces all around him would come alive with students! As I was to observe in several settings over ensuing decades, even more than the intricacies of modern philosophical thought, students and their willingness to learn were Jerry Gill’s professional passions.

As he paused to take a breath, I introduced myself to him and explained where we were in relation to Manhattan and how to get there.  I told him that we were still ten days or more away from the return of athletes for early fall sports and offered to help him get his wife and son settled in the Hopkins Hall second-floor apartment, to which they had been assigned. With the summer conferences ended, Lory and I were preparing our own meals in the tiny kitchen, and so I welcomed him and his family to join us for breakfast. There I learned about his sports experience: State of Washington high school champion in the long jump, basketball captain at Westmont College. I told him about my intentions to continue competing with the New York Athletic Club. We hit it off!

As the other newcomers arrived, the four young wives—Susie Burton, Janet Gill, Lory Lockerbie, and Barbara Tjornholm—became friendly with each other, but Lory and Janet were closest in those early years. Janet was a Southern California girl who didn’t know the rules of the Eastern “fashion police” regarding wearing white shoes after Labor Day and other such apparel mandates. In fact, neither she nor her husband owned a winter coat with which to fend off a freezing day on Long Island. Lory provided them both with coats and Janet with knowledge of a few cultural differences. In turn, Janet—whose son Jeremy was approaching his first birthday—had helpful encouragement to Lory when, as of October 19, our first son was born.

All four young women came under the austere tutelage of FEG’s wife Dorothy Medd Gaebelein, whose instructions in boarding school decorum for faculty wives spanned such topics as prohibitions on toddlers’ wearing pajamas to the Johnston Hall dining room for an evening meal to practice in how to lower the window shades in a faculty apartment bedroom and how to string one’s lingerie and other unmentionable laundry items discreetly on the clothesline behind the sheets and towels to protect “the boys” from temptation’s fantasies. Somewhat more practical was the loving mentoring by other women—veterans at Stony Brook named Eleanor Johnson, Ross Hershey, Dorothie Goldberg, and Esther Marshall—who nurtured them in the ways of sustaining family life in Hopkins or Johnston or Hegeman residence halls.

By the way, it seems notable to me that, over almost 100 years, that year’s group of faculty wives has been the only ones to whom a graduating class (1958) has dedicated its version of the Res Gestae annual yearbook.

The five faculty newbies could be found in frequent informal conversations among ourselves and with our older colleagues, sharing our latest discovery about the mysteries of being a boarding school “master.” Whatever our differences, the one common theme among us was how intolerably busy we were, including at the very moment during which we were making time to talk! For instance, in those years, one man each day was assigned to be “in charge” of each meal’s attendance and routine, plus taking the roll at the daily mid-morning chapel service and the snack (often cookies and juice) that followed on the Johnston Hall patio. During this interval the rest of the faculty gathered for a brief cup of coffee and donut in the Arno C. Gaebelein Memorial Library, where we took advantage of a few minutes’ freedom from “the boys” to kvetch over living in a fish-bowl, accepting the constancy of dorm duties and other supervisory responsibilities, remembering what it had been like (not so many years before) to be a teenage boy, finding time following a day of classes and afternoon sports practice and the evening meal ended to prepare the next day’s lessons, maintaining a more than nodding acquaintance with one’s wife…  and on and on and on. Too much “shop talk” too often and for too little gain.

Jerry Gill was somewhat the exception. Several mornings each week he boarded an early train to Penn Station and the seminary in Manhattan (among his classmates were Pat Robertson, Tom Little, and a tall basketball player from Adelphi University named Karl Soderstrom). Gill was eager to complete his degree as soon as possible and so loaded up on additional courses and always had his major papers composed, typed, and handed in long before they were due. Upon return to Stony Brook, he picked up on his share of duties as teacher, coach, dormitory supervisor, as well as husband-and-father.

During the basketball season, in addition to assisting Jim Fenton in coaching the team, Don Jones—who had played in Indiana—and Jerry Gill cooked up a game between members of the Stony Brook faculty and some seminarians, including Karl Soderstrom (whose main claim to fame was that, in a game at Madison Square Garden, he had held Bevo Francis, the nation’s leading scorer, well below his average). Later that winter, I convinced Jerry to make his own Madison Square Garden appearance when I recruited him to represent the New York AC in the long jump at the National AAU indoor championship meet. He told me later that it was “the thrill of a lifetime!”

As our first year came to an end, I was eager to be sure of summer employment. The Stony Brook Assembly, founded in 1909, had ended its residential conferences after the 1957 season, largely determined by Mariel Ward’s declaration that she and her family would not be vacating their Johnston Hall apartment to make room for conference guests. After almost a half-century of on-site conferees from across the continent and overseas, instead the Assembly program would consist of only one week’s meetings in Carson Auditorium, July 26 through August 1. That change meant no nursing employment for Lory and no conference meals for us in the Johnston Hall dining room, although I was hired to provide song-leading and special music, including a conference choir. But I needed some greater means to provide our daily bread throughout the summer.

Sometime that spring I’d met a near neighbor named Todd Harris, a Princeton graduate whose college friend had been Bill Bonthron, a one-time world-class miler. Harris (whose son Ethan is both a Stony Brook  alumnus, Class of 1971, and former trustee) owned a plastics factory in downtown Stony Brook. During one conversation he asked me about the prizes generally awarded at the meets in which I competed. I described an array of gold/silver/bronze medals lying in their boxes in some dark drawer or brassy trophies topped by wedding-cake statuettes taking up space. He described something quite different: A medal encased in clear plastic to serve as a paperweight or desktop ornament.  He offered to make me a sample, so I provided my most prized award, the bronze NCAA medal from the 1955 cross-country championship race. It sits on my desk as I write.

Noting my delight, Todd Harris proposed that I join his firm for the summer of 1958, as a salesman to track meet and other sporting event directors up-and-down the East coast, showing my NCAA award as a replacement for the Dieges and Clust medals commonly offered. Of course, I accepted. On the Monday following the 1958 Commencement Exercises, I presented myself for work at the plastics factory (now the administration building for the Long Island Museum). Todd Harris flinched upon seeing me, slapped his forehead, and said, “Oh, I’m so sorry! I neglected to tell you, I sold the company last week.  I can use you for one week of inventory, and I’ll pay you for two weeks.”

Okay, what do we do now?  I spent that day—and the next four—mindlessly collecting and counting plastic bottle caps and other products. But upon returning home that first afternoon, I greeted Lory with the news. Her first reaction echoed my question: “What are we going to do?” I had the perfect answer, just what every young wife is waiting to hear: “I think I’ll use the summer to write.”

The fact that she didn’t immediately pack up her own and our son Don’s belongings and head home to her mother in Brooklyn is its own testament. The next week, having completed my one-week/paid-for-two commitment, I moved a table and chair onto the screened-in porch at our end of Hegeman Hall, set up my Underwood typewriter, and began composing homilies and inspirational articles for Sunday School papers and like-minded Christian magazine publishers. As I set up shop, I looked across the lawns and Chapman Parkway separating Hegeman from Hopkins. There on his front porch sat Jerry Gill, preparing for his own summer of writing!

We called to each other, then met later that morning—and most days thereafter—to encourage each other. Of course, while I was creating sappy stories and preachy illustrations for pious consumption, he was struggling to explicate the philosophy of Wittgenstein or the theory of tacit knowing by Michael Polanyi. In our break-time together, I’d read a passage to him, which he’d critique; then he’d read to me and explain what I could admit to not comprehending. We made quite a pair of selfish husbands, each doing his own thing while our wives worried about putting food on the table.

I did have one backup strategy. We’d started a bank account at the lovely white bank in downtown Stony Brook, and I’d made the acquaintance of an officer named Arnold Hawxhurst. When the two-weeks of plastics payment ran low, I went to the bank and asked for a short-term loan. “How much?  And for how long?” My cash salary was $250 per month, less taxes, and knowing that we’d be back in the School dining room soon after Labor Day, I asked the banker for $750, to be repaid by September 15. He gave me the loan in full.

I wrote faithfully each day, sending my work-product to a wide variety of publishers.  My manuscripts were always accompanied by the requisite stamped, self-addressed envelope to receive the anticipated rejection. I also did some evening tutoring and taught voice lessons and sight reading to an aspiring singer. I put on my summer tuxedo and played the vibraphone at two or three social events, and even preached as the summer substitute for a few Long Island pastors on vacation (honorarium was never more than $10, if and when the church treasurer remembered to offer it).

Jerry Gill and I continued meeting each day to support each other’s efforts.  On the day after Labor Day 1958, I went to the School mail boxes to collect the incoming post. Among the bills and flyers were eight envelopes from publishers, one of which was thick enough to signal a returned and rejected manuscript. But the other seven were slim and tight. I opened the first of these and found a check in payment for my unsolicited text; in the second, another check; in the third, yet another check; and so on through the seven envelopes. The total income that morning exceeded my $750 loan, due two weeks later.

I’d lost a job but found a friend and a career that now extends to hundreds of articles and more than forty books. A few months later, Jerry presented me with an off-print of a scholarly article for a theological journal—his first acceptance—which he had inscribed to me. A dozen years later, his first books, Philosophy Today No. 1 and No. 2, anthologies of contemporary philosophical essays, were published by Macmillan. The dedication of No. 2 reads “To D. Bruce Lockerbie, friend in Christ.”

Jerry H. Gill completed his studies early at New York Theological Seminary and left Stony Brook in 1959.  To replace him, he recommended both Tom Little and Karl Soderstrom, who brought to Stony Brook the inductive method of teaching the Bible—by asking questions based on the text. Jerry went on to earn a Ph. D. at Duke and a productive career as a university professor of philosophy and author of some two dozen books. I’ve visited him at various campuses where he has always been the most beloved teacher. He is now retired in Tucson, Arizona, and I regret that we have not seen each other in recent years. He remains—in memory, if not in person—an inspirational friend.

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Top 10 | Stories of 2016

December 31, 2016

Thank you for following the Bears in 2016!

Over the past year this blog recorded new records in views (60,942) and visitors (15,183) in its seventh year as the hub of Blue and White athletics.

Here are the top 10 most read stories of 2016.

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#10 | Jones Signs with Franklin Pierce | 4/14/2016

Last April senior Rosa Jones signed a National Letter of Intent to play Division II golf for Franklin Pierce College

#9 | Boys’ Soccer Wins League Championship | 10/21/2016

The boys’ soccer team capped a memorable season by winning the program’s first league title since 2004.

#8 | Coach Hickey Notches 300th Win | 1/8/2016

In a win over Port Jeff, Coach Mike Hickey became the first Stony Brook coach, in any sport, to reach the 300-win plateau.

#7 | Memories are Made of This: How it all Began | 5/9/2016

In his first of several articles, the esteemed D. Bruce Lockerbie, a former faculty member and coach, recollects his first interaction with the Stony Brook School.

#6 | Skorobohaty Closes Career with a Flourish | 2/16/2016

Senior Annie Skorobohaty closed her basketball career as one of the deadliest 3-point shooters on Long Island.

#5 | Bears Rock Nassau in LI Championship | 3/1/2016

The boys’ basketball team won its third Long Island Championship in program history in a 52-33 victory over East Rockaway.

#4 | Etienne Wins State Championship | 6/11/2016

Jyles Etienne became the sixth individual New York State Champion in school history by winning the state high jump crown with a leap of 6’10”.

#3 | Bears with Sticks: The Remarkable Rise of Stony Brook Lacrosse | 6/28/2010

A story, published in 2010, that follows the boys’ lacrosse programs’ history from it’s humble beginnings as a junior varsity team to its peak as one of the strongest programs on Long Island.

#2 | Memories are Made of This: Dream, Disappointment, Deliverance | 9/7/2016

D. Bruce Lockerbie shares memories from his incredible running career, how tantalizingly close he came to his Olympic dreams, and the redemption he received forty years later.

#1 | On This Day in History – 2007 | 3/1/2016

An article published on the anniversary of Dan Shanks ’92 being named to the Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference All-Time men’s basketball team.

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