DuBOIS — The DuBois Dream opened their third season in impressive fashion Saturday, capturing a pair of victories Saturday at the DuBois Area Middle School to win the organization’s first-ever Overseas Exposure Showcase.
DuBois opened the day with a dominant 113-64 victory against the Buffalo Blue Hawks, then knocked off the Chautauqua Hurricane, 99-88, in Saturday night’s finals.
That 11-point victory in the championship game was the Dream’s first-ever win against the Hurricane. DuBois and Chautauqua are entering the third year playing together in the same league. They both were in the Premier Basketball League two years ago, before making the switch to the Northeast Division of the North American Basketball League (NABL) last season.
Saturday’s victory against the Hurricane was a statement win, one that showed the Hurricane the Dream are poised to be a real threat the Northeast Division this season with its new-look roster.
DuBois got a huge day from newcomer Ken Woodard, who joined team following its Media Day and team exhibition game last Saturday.
Woodard scored a combined 43 points on the day, posting 22 in the opener and 21 in the finals against Chautauqua. Reuel Moore also scored 21 points in the finals, including a 6-for-12 performance from 3-point land.
That duo were joined in double figures by five other teammates — Cameron Grumley (14), Hasiin Dixon (14), Demetrice Jacobs (13), Albert Varacallo (11) and Sam Roselli (10) — in the title game victory.
“The win against Chautauqua was a big one and a great way to start the season,” said Varacallo. “I honestly am just really thankful for all of the help and support from everyone throughout the entire day. It was such a production, but the entire Dream Team and Staff banded together to make it happen. I cannot thank them enough.
“On the court, it was just amazing to pull through. We have been working so hard and are only going to continue working even harder to bring another championship to DuBois because they deserve it.”
DuBois’ banner day opened with its convincing victory against Buffalo.
And, the Dream wasted little time seizing control of the game as they outscored the Blue Hawks, 31-9, in the first quarter. Seven of the 10 players on the DuBois roster scored in the opening 10 minutes, led by Cameron Grumley who had seven in his first game with the Dream. Woodard and Sam Roselli each added six in the quarter.
The Dream continued to pour it on in the second quarter, opening the period on a 24-2 run to push their lead to 44 points at 55-11. Dixon had seven during that run, while Woodard and De’Ondre Terrell each had six.
Buffalo finally found its legs a little late in the first half, as the Blue Hawks put together an 11-8 spurt over the final five and half minutes. However, that did little to put a dent in DuBois’ lead as the Dream took a 63-22 advantage into the half.
The Blue Hawks carried the momentum it stated late in the first half into the third, opening the second half with a 10-2 spurt to cut their deficit to 33 points (65-32). That’s as close as Buffalo got in the second half though.
Eight quick points by DuBois — six by Woodard — promptly pushed the Dream’s lead back out to 41 (73-32) midway through the third quarter.
Woodard scored eight of his 22 points in the third, while Roselli had six of his 14 in the quarter. Dixon (15), Grumley (13), Jacobs (10) and Terrell (10) also scored in double figures in the opening win.
DuBois, which led 86-44 after three quarters, led by as many as 56 points in the fourth quarter (108-52) with just under five minutes to play before coming away with the 49-point victory. Tristan Pierce came off the Dream bench to hit three 3-pointers in the fourth for all nine of his points.
“We played well as a team,” said Dream head coach Jacob Perrin following the win against the Blue Hawks. “That’s something we’ve been talking about and I’ve reiterated during our team meetings. Relationships are huge. How you play with each other is going to determine the outcomes of games.
“You can have a lot of individually talented players, but if they can’t come together and maximize each other’s strengths, then you’re not going to be operating at the highest level capacity you can.
“In the locker room before the game, one of the things we kind of hammered at was taking them out of it early and letting the offense come to us. I though we did a good job of doing that, and came out with what we thought was our best defensive lineup with guys who can also play offense.”
In the night cap, DuBois jumped out to a 24-18 lead after one quarter against Chautauqua. Woodard had nine points in the opening 10 minutes, while Moore hit a pair of 3-pointers.
Moore added two more treys in the second quarter, completing a rare four-point play after being fouled on the second, as the Dream grabbed control with a 27-16 frame to take a 17-point lead (51-34) into the half. Grumley also had seven points in the second, while Jacobs added six.
The second half proved to be more closely contested, with the Hurricane actually outscoring the Dream, 54-48, over the final two quarters. However, that wasn’t enough for Chautauqua as the Dream’s strong first-half performance led them to the 11-point victory.
Marcus Feagin and Nick Pill led the Hurricane with 19 and 16 points, respectively. Pill scored 13 points after the half, while Feagin had 10 points after the break. Larry River added 13 (8 in 2nd half), while Craige Dixon had 12.
David Blanks Sr., who played for the Dream last year, chipped in 10 points (all in 2nd half) for the Hurricane.
Chautauqua reached the title game with a 77-69 win against the NYC Eagles.
DuBois is back in action Saturday night against the Hickory Hoyas at DuBois Central Catholic at 7 p.m.