NORWICH – While Norwich has won more Tom Schwan Tournament titles that any other participant, it took six years before the Tornado were able to repeat as champions.
Norwich finished Saturday’s game with Section X’s Massena on a 7-0 run, and backed up its 2008 title win with a 65-56 victory.
“It’s always nice to win this tournament, and it’s important to win in Tom’s memory,” said Norwich coach Mark Abbott, who also gained the upper hand on his former college buddy, Massena head coach, Tom Miller. “Our first goal of the season is to win the Schwan Tournament, and we had to beat a very good team to do it.”
Massena found itself down in the neighborhood of 10 points most of the second half. A basket by Taylor Eisner, two free throws from Matt Jenack, and an Eisner three-point play cut the Norwich lead to 58-56 with 3:37 to play.
Tournament MVP, Richie Bonney, ended the Red Raiders’ threat driving to the basket and drawing two foul shots. Bonney made those two – he was 6-for-6 from the charity stripe in the game – followed that up with a spot-up jumper after a feed from Derek Hughes, and Hughes capped the game with 3-for-4 foul shooting in the last 65 seconds.
Bonney finished with 21 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, Hughes added 10 to go with 11 assists, and a single-game team-record, four drawn charges. Josh Borfitz tacked on 15 points – nine of those on three-pointers – and handed out eight assists.