Tag Archives: college basketball

SCCC women’s Basketball coach Kevin Foley on how to coach a winning team

Coaching Suffolk County Community College women’s basketball team since 1994, Kevin Foley has emphasized essential qualities and has worked to embed in his teams.

“There’s a difference,” Foley said, “between playing basketball and wanting to be a basketball player.”

One distinction, he said, is someone who plays just to play the sport and the other one is fully immersed in the culture of basketball and continuously emerges themselves in it.

Foley, who was a guard for Seton Hall University, where he was named captain his senior year, averaging 14 points and 4 rebounds per game, also was a star high school basketball player on Long Island.

His experience has helped him lead the SCCC women’s team to the regional playoffs every year since coming on board. Foley’s teams have won six regional championships and one national title.

The women’s team finished the 2019-2020 season with a 15-10 overall record.

“Coach Foley really knows what he is doing,” said Lindsey Devine, the team’s captain and a sophomore. “He really focuses on the little things and the fundamentals of the game.”

Those fundamentals include how to properly box out, pass, and ball handling. Without the fundamentals being secure, nothing can be built on top of them.

And communication.

“We learned how important communication really is in this game,” Devine said. “Because you should constantly be talking to one another on the court.”

A quiet team is a losing team, Foley said.

“Being a freshman, I held back from saying a lot on and off the court,” Katie Brown, a freshman guard, said about how communication has led to team wins. “After two months into the season is when I really started to feel comfortable and I felt that I could communicate better with my teammates during games and in practice.”

“I don’t care if you are a blabbermouth or the most shy person in the world,” Foley said. “When you’re on a court, you have to talk. You have to be engaged verbally. And if you’re not engaged verbally, usually don’t do too well.”

Foley said it is not only important to train and practice, but to also watch and study the game. However, there is a limit. Playing too much does more damage than good to any player.

After covering the essentials that are non-skill attributed, Foley said coaching was essentially being a teacher. As long as the players were willing to learn, he’d always be able to teach.

“When you walk into this gym, it becomes the classroom,” Foley said. “To teach things that I’ve learned and you pass them on, whatever else it may be. Everybody can grow and enhance themselves in terms of how they see themselves and how they feel about themselves. I always use the phrase, but I think this is the greatest game.”

Men’s, women’s basketball advance in NJCAA playoffs

Suffolk’s men’s and women’s basketball teams both advanced to the second round of the NJCAA conference playoffs this past week.

The undefeated men’s team faced Dutchess Community College and soundly defeated them 84-50.

In the first half, Suffolk and their suffocating defense played a big role, limiting their opponent to 20 points. In the second half, they displayed their artillery, outscoring their opponent 52-30.

Tyree Grimsley was a figure with 24 points, six rebounds and three steals, Steven Tynes had 19 points, 10 assists, five rebounds and four steals. James Signer had 12 points, eight rebounds, four blocks and Jaye Bookhart had ten 10 points.

With this win, the Sharks move on to the Regional XV Semifinal where they will face Queensborough Community College this Saturday at 7:15 p.m. at Borough of Manhattan Community College.

They had two previous meetings this season, with the Sharks being victorious in both games. They averaged 91 points per game and held their opponent to 68 points.

The women’s basketball team defeated Borough of Manhattan Community College 52-37 in the first round of playoffs. They go on to play Nassau Community College for the second round of playoffs at Borough of Manhattan Community College on Saturday.

Suffolk basketball heads to playoffs after historic 24-0 record

Suffolk’s basketball team capped off a historic season Feb. 19 with a 123-45 rout of the Borough of Manhattan Community College,  completing the regular season with a perfect 24-0 record.

The Sharks, ranked No. 1 in the NJCAA, are set to play Dutchess Community College in the Section XV Division III conference playoffs in the Ammerman campus Brookhaven Gymnasium at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

The team had not previously ended a season undefeated. Suffolk has beaten Dutchess twice this season.

Standout point guard Steven Tynes, who coach Victor Correa has described as the team’s leader, led the way for the Sharks in the win against Manhattan (20-8), scoring 29 points. He also had five rebounds, 10 assists and eight steals.

“It feels great. We worked hard all season. The results speak for themselves,” Tynes said. “It means everything to be a leader. I push everyone and they all push me.” 

Tynes had strong backup. Ryan Graziano had 16 points and seven rebounds. James Signer had 19 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks,  and Tyree Grimsley added 15 points, nine rebounds and eight steals. RJ Walker had 12 points. Jon Agostino added four points and 10 assists.

Last season, the Sharks had three losses, all coming against Nassau County Community College. But this year, they topped Nassau in both of their two matches. “It means everything. It’s nice to beat Nassau, our direct rival. We worked a bit harder this year,” Signer said.

The Sharks averaged 91 points per game this season, while allowing 71 points. They shot 50 percent from the field and held their opponents to a low 39 percent. They shot 37 percent from beyond the arc while holding their opponents to 32 percent. They also averaged 39 rebounds, 22 assists, 12 steals and six blocks per game.

“I think a lot of people fail to realize the work ethic of this team,” said Kyle Dowd, 18, a radio and TV major who in his second semester at Suffolk who attended eight games this year. “They’ve been displaying this type of basketball all year and the results showed in the 24 games they’ve played this year,” Dowd said. “They really wanted this game against Nassau. You could tell.”

Tynes finished the season averaging 21 points, 9.5 assists and 3.6 rebounds shooting 50.2 percent from the field. Grimsley averaged 18 points and 8.5 rebounds while shooting 71 percent from the field. Graziano averaged 13 points shooting 45 percent from the field.

Jaye Bookhart, who averaged 11 points while nailing three assists and three boards, shooting 44 percent from the field, said the team has to go into the playoffs with a specific mindset.

“In playoffs, everyone is 0-0,” he said. “We’re going back to the basics and keep getting buckets.”