Jon Breor, Greenfield outlast Mahar for DRIVE League hoops title (PHOTOS)

  • Greenfield's Noah Murray goes up for a shot defended by Mahar's Gavin Sullivan on Tuesday in Nichols Gymnasium at Greenfield High School. Paul Franz

  • Mahar's Nate Danielson drives on Greenfield's Jackson Campbell during the DRIVE League boys basketball championship game on Tuesday at Nichols Gymnasium in Greenfield. STAFF PHOTO/Paul Franz

  • Greenfield's Ollie Postera and Jacob Blanchard surround Mahar's Morgan Softic during the DRIVE League boys basketball championship game on Tuesday at Nichols Gymnasium in Greenfield. STAFF PHOTO/Paul Franz

  • Greenfield's Caleb Murray goes up for a shot defended by Mahar's Connor Sluder during the DRIVE League boys basketball championship game on Tuesday at Nichols Gymnasium in Greenfield. STAFF PHOTO/Paul Franz

  • Greenfield's Noah Murray goes up for a shot defended by Mahar's Gavin Sullivan during the DRIVE League boys basketball championship game on Tuesday at Nichols Gymnasium in Greenfield. STAFF PHOTO/Paul Franz

Staff Writer
Published: 8/2/2022 7:55:08 PM

GREENFIELD — Jon Breor was a problem in the paint Tuesday night.

The Greenfield big man had a quiet first half offensively, scoring just three points in the championship game of the DRIVE League boys varsity finals against Mahar, but his size down low proved to be an issue for the Senators on the boards and defensively, where he was able to alter shots down low. 

Greenfield led 24-15 at the half but both teams found a rhythm on offense in the second half of action. Breor was a big part of that for the Green Wave, scoring 14 points after intermission to lead his side to a 62-54 win that secured the DRIVE League title at Nichols Gymnasium. 

“It’s cool to win it,” Breor said. “This is my team. We’ve been playing together since Suburban [League basketball]. These are my guys. I know it’s not the regular season but it’s helped us get ready for that. It’s still basketball.” 

Breor — who’s only entering his sophomore year at Greenfield — was awarded the league’s MVP trophy for his stellar play throughout the summer. 

“It’s only summer league but it’s still cool to win MVP,” Breor said. “It’s a lot of fun. I love summer league. I’ve been playing in it for two years now. I enjoy it. It gives me something to do in the summer and keeps me playing basketball.” 

It was a big run early that put the Green Wave in the driver’s seat. Mahar zipped out to a 7-2 lead but Greenfield went on a 16-0 run to take command. 

Ollie Postera got it going with a basket inside before Jacob Blanchard and Caleb Murray knocked down back-to-back 3’s. Noah Murray knocked down a free throw, Breor scored down low and Jackson Campbell sank a deep 3 before Caleb Murray got down low for a bucket and suddenly Greenfield held an 18-7 lead.

Both teams traded baskets the rest of the half, but defense reigned supreme to start the game. 

The offense picked up after the break. Greenfield continued building on its lead, going ahead by as many as 15 after Noah Murray knocked down a 3-pointer, Breor scored in the paint and Noah Murray scored inside to put the Green Wave up, 41-26. 

The Senators stormed back and made it a game. Their press gave Greenfield trouble, leading to easy baskets that allowed Mahar to get back in the game. 

A big run saw Hunter Martin make a 3-ball and Will Barnes score down low before Nate Danielson put in three baskets and Martin sank a pair of free throws to pull the Senators within 48-41. 

Mahar kept fighting back, with Gavin Sullivan and Martin making 3’s to cut the deficit to 56-51 late, but Caleb Murray and Breor were money from the charity stripe late, sinking their free throws to hold on for the win. 

“The whole game felt pretty close,” Breor said. “Mahar is a good team so we knew at any moment they could go on a run and take the game over. We had to keep our intensity up, keep moving the ball, keep scoring, keep playing defense and just keep playing basketball.” 

Breor led Greenfield with 17 points in the win. Caleb Murray scored 14 points, Campbell had three 3’s to tally nine points, Noah Murray finished with eight points, Petru Cojocaru put in six points, Blanchard recorded five points and Postera scored three points in the winning effort. 

Martin was the high scorer for Mahar, putting in 13 points. Sullivan recorded nine points, Danielson and Barnes each had eight points, Morgan Softic scored seven points, Connor Sluder had six points and Jayden Delgado knocked down a free throw in the loss. 

Breor said winning the championship gives Greenfield confidence heading into the winter. 

“All these teams that we’re playing here we’ll play during the season,” Breor said. “Now we know what we’re playing against and we know what we have. We know what we need to improve on and we’ll keep getting better.” 

Individually Breor used the summer to improve on his all-around game, working to be more than a post player. 

“I’ve just been working on my game,” Breor said. “Keep working in the post. I’m trying to expand my game and not just post up every time and trying to overpower people. A lot of teams I played this year I could just overpower them with my height. It’s been getting me better by working on my all around game.” 

Greenfield and Mahar reached the finals with semifinal wins on Monday at GHS. 

Greenfield opened the semis with a 72-52 win over Northampton behind 33 points from Breor and 16 points from Blanchard. Ben Kearney tallied 20 points in the loss. 

Barnes had 11 points and Connor Sluder chipped in 10 points to lift Mahar past Easthampton, 66-38, in the second semifinal on Monday. Jake Redmond led the Eagles with 17 points. 


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