Bulldogs roar back from slow start, beat Brattleboro in D-I
MANCHESTER — Burr and Burton sophomore Nasier Camp is new to the Bulldogs this season, a transfer from Rhode Island.
There have been flashes of brilliance this season from the young forward and when the lights are the brightest — the beginning of the Division I playoffs — he made his presence felt.
Camp scored a season-high 15 points, grabbed nine rebounds and had five blocks as No. 7 Burr and Burton came back from a halftime deficit to top No. 10 Brattleboro, 58-43, at E.H. Henry Gym on Wednesday night in a Division I playdown.
"I feel like my team really got me going," Camp said after the game as fans gave him congratulations for the win. "We came out pretty slow in the beginning, but we were able to come back."
BBA coach Eric Green said the comeback started at the defensive end as Camp was a difference-maker, blocking five shots and altering probably a half-dozen more.
"We talked about turning defense into offense and digging in," Green said. "He hit the boards hard too. The potential's never been in question, it's just putting it together and now's a good time for that to happen."
Nobody, save for senior guard Jake Nicholson, played well for the Bulldogs in the first half. BBA started the game down 8-0, but Nicholson — who led all scorers with 19 points — finally got going and hit three 3-pointers, the only points in the first quarter that Brattleboro led 12-9.
Brattleboro kept the pressure on and after a three from Tyler Millerick and a basket from Hunter Beebe with 2:15 left in the half, the Colonels led 25-15 and Green called a timeout.
BBA finished the half well, with threes from Patrick Forstmann and Nicholson to go into the break only down four at 25-21.
"Nerves are a funny thing," Green said. "We were settling too much for jump shots and they surprised us a little with their zone."
Burr and Burton came out quickly in the third, keeping its momentum from the end of the first half. The Bulldogs started the second half on a 11-4 run, taking the lead for the first time on a Tommy Baker floater, then later on a Nicholson layup, to make it 34-33 with 3:57 left in the quarter.
At the same time, the BBA defense picked up, holding Brattleboro scoreless for the rest of the third. Camp scored 13 of his 15 in the second half, including snagging an offensive rebound off a missed free throw and putting it back for two, then hitting a sideline jumper in the last 90 seconds to give BBA a 41-33 lead going into the fourth.
All told, BBA outscored Brattleboro 20-8 in the third quarter.
"We talked about coming out in the second half and have fun," Camp said. "We came out and played for each other."
Camp finished off a 12-0 run for BBA with a pair of free throws at the start of the fourth, then he and Forstmann hit shots — Forstmann's a three from deep — to get the lead all the way up to 15 at 49-34 with 4:37 left.
The frustration of the comeback started to bubble to the surface for Brattleboro in the final minutes as one of the Colonel players was hit with a technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Forstmann made both of the free throws and moments later, the 6-foot-6 Camp put the exclamation point on the victory with a pair of thunderous dunks that got the BBA student section roaring.
"It's one of the first times all year finishing off a game with a lead," Green said. "I'm very proud of the team."
Nicholson, Camp and Forstmann all ended up in double figures, and Tommy Baker nearly got there with nine points. For Brattleboro, who finish the year at 12-9, Charlie Galanes led the way with 12 points. Millerick added 11 and Beebe chipped in 10.
BBA improves to 14-7 and travels to Jericho on Friday for a date with the No. 2 Mount Mansfield Cougars.
"We'll go out and give them what we can," Green said.
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