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Gembe joins Devils' 1,000-point club in win

January 09, 2007|by CHRIS CARTER / Staff Correspondent

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Greencastle-Antrim senior Jaren Gembe reached a milestone Monday night that only eight other Blue Devils have met in the past 50 years.

Gembe hit a 3-pointer with 5 minutes, 54 seconds left in the second quarter against Northern York to push him over the 1,000-point mark for his career.

Gembe, the first Greencastle player to top the mark since 1999, led the Blue Devils with 21 points as they beat Northern 66-59 in a Mid-Penn nondivision game.

"It means a lot," said Gembe, the sixth male to accomplish the feat. "It's been a goal of mine ever since I've been on varsity. But I didn't think about it until this year."

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Gembe entered the game with 990 points and added six more in the first quarter as Greencastle (6-7) jumped out to a 13-5 lead. He made two foul shots, before missing two jump shots from behind the arc that would have put him over the mark. He finally reached it after taking a pass from his brother, Jordan, at the left baseline, where he drained a 3 to give him 1,001.

"It kind of makes it a little more special for him to get it on an assist from Jordan," said Greencastle coach Garon Gembe, father of Jaren and Jordan. "(Jordan) has been a big part of the process, so it was nice for him to be involved.

"From a father's standpoint, I couldn't be any prouder. As a coach, I don't know a player that works harder or deserves it more than him. It's a milestone that's a reflection of the work he puts in."

After Jaren hit the shot, the game was stopped to give the Greencastle coaches and players a chance to congratulate him on the feat. At halftime, all nine 1,000-point scorers were announced and the five in attendance were recognized at mid-court, including Jaren.

"I've seen the list a couple of times. There's someone on there with over 1,600 points (Dave Hann) - that's a lot of points," said Jaren, who needs 189 more points to become the second-leading boys scorer in Blue Devils history.

After Jaren reached the milestone, he began to focus on getting his teammates more involved in the scoring. He finished with six assists - five in the second half - and dished twice to reserve Greg Hamms in the fourth quarter. Hamms scored eight of his 10 points in the final period.

"(Hamms) is a good athlete and brings a lot of quickness to the defense," Garon Gembe said. "And he certainly gives us another option on offense."

Ty Thrush fouled out of the game with 1:54 left and Greencastle clinging to a 56-51 lead. The Blue Devils guard picked up three fouls - including a technical - in the fourth quarter because of his intense pressure defense. Dameatric Scott also was called for a technical foul earlier in the game.

"I think we feel that every ball is ours. It doesn't matter, we just attack it," Garon Gembe said. "I like our aggression, but we just have to be more intelligent about it."

Northern (2-11) cut the deficit to 56-53 with 1:44 left on a basket by Chad Hatterman. But Greencastle went 6-for-6 from the free-throw line down the stretch - all in 1-and-1 situations - to seal the win.

Thrush finished with 12 points, Scott had nine and Treavor Gelsinger added eight for the Blue Devils.

Robert Bleiler had a game-high 26 for Northern, while Todd Syvertson added 10.

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