KU AD: Missouri pregame notes
KU AD videos/transcripts: Coach Self and players preview Missouri game
“I’m sure none of my teammates ever will be or ever have been (intimidated),” English said. “They’ve been the better team there. The fans had nothing to do with them winning in Lawrence.”
Nevertheless, Missouri coach Frank Haith is taking steps to prepare his players for the avalanche of noise and hate the Allen Fieldhouse faithful figure to rain down upon them Saturday.
…Junior guard Michael Dixon even said he thinks Missouri will use cards, like you’ve famously seen Oregon’s football team do in the past, to call in plays from the sideline as a way to counteract an environment that English is sure will be off the charts.
“It’s gonna be turned up a notch, no doubt,” English said. “After we beat them here (Columbia) my freshman year, when we went there, it was super loud — the court was shaking.
“They’ll definitely be excited for us to get in there.”
A "perfect storm" of circumstances has Kansas basketball operations director Barry Hinson wondering how ear-splitting it might get when third-ranked Mizzou visits No. 4 KU in the 267th and last scheduled game between the ancient rivals.
The loudest precedent, said KU video director Mike Lickert, was 118-something decibels against Texas in 2009 and nearabouts often.
"We're close to OSHA standards," Lickert said, smiling.
To breaking them, he meant — an observation that compelled Hinson to forage online for a decibel comparison chart to put it in context.
"Aircraft takeoff, 180; fireworks, 140; snowmobile 120," he read aloud. "Chainsaw's a 110. Lawnmower's 90."
Below the list, on hearingaidknow.com, he found what he was looking for.
"Noise levels of 130 or over will be painful and likely to cause immediate hearing damage."
Mizzou Arena was plenty loud for Kansas on Feb. 4, leaving Self and Hinson among others dazzled.
But it's a din of inequity at KU, perhaps unequaled anywhere — and almost certainly the most precious experience to be lost for Mizzou with its move to the Southeastern Conference.
Typically, the boom is at its apex just before tipoff, and it's impossible to ignore. Scan the crowd, and you'll see some wearing ear plugs, others covering their ears.
When Ohio State played at KU earlier this season, Hinson saw a Buckeye just mouth the word "wow" in awe just before the ball went up.
Only adding to the mystique, as Hinson put it, Baylor coach Scott Drew once took his team off the court during the video buildup moments before the game started.
"That means we must have done a good job," said Lickert, who acknowledges the cranked-up sound system contributes mightily to the sound level but insists the stoked audience of 16,300 really moves the meter.
Lickert perhaps has some diabolical additions planned for the MU game, but he wasn't letting on.
…"You can't go to Kmart, Walmart or Target, walk in and say, `Where's the aisle where you sell tradition?' " Hinson said. "You can't purchase it. And I know it sounds like a Mastercard 'priceless' commercial ...
"But 100 feet from this office is Wrigley. It's Fenway. Old Yankee Stadium. It's the Colosseum. I mean, it is. And it's set down in a small town in midwest America. On Naismith Drive."
That history inspires senses of reverence and responsibility in those entrusted as stewards now.
…"If a booster gave us $100 million, wrote the check but (said) the only thing we could spend that money would be to build a new facility, we would respectfully decline. I mean, seriously," Self said. "We would respectfully decline, saying, 'Hey, appreciate the offer, hope you we can use your money in some other way, in some other fashion. But if that's the only way that we can use it, we respectfully decline. Because we're not building a new one.' "
For all that's happened there, though, Saturday may create a moment — and a noise — like no other.
"I don't think in my lifetime I'll ever be in such an intense environment," said Hinson, adding, "It will be almost like a portrait."
Of a place in time never likely to be repeated for Mizzou — and in a certain way, even for KU.
St Louis PD
There's a ton on the line in Saturday's Missouri-Kansas showdown in Lawrence, Kan. Missouri is ranked third in the Associated Press poll. Kansas is fourth. They're both pursuing a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. And it's the last meeting between the two rivals, at least for the time being, since Mizzou is moving to the Southeastern Conference next season.
But here's what likely isn't at stake: Kansas' Big 12 title streak, arguably the most impressive run going in men's college basketball.
The Jayhawks have won seven straight regular-season Big 12 titles. Regardless of what happens against the second-place Tigers (12-3 Big 12), the first-place Jayhawks (13-2) should be able to win at least a title share, with their only remaining games being against so-so Oklahoma State (road) and Texas (home).
Kansas' streak is quietly climbing the ranks of college-basketball history. Gonzaga has an 11-year run going in the West Coast Conference, but it's in jeopardy: The Bulldogs were a game behind Saint Mary's entering Thursday's play.
In the major conferences, only UCLA (13) and Kentucky (nine) have had longer streaks. It isn't exactly John Wooden's run, but Kansas coach Bill Self (pictured) has already extended another streak. This will be the 14th straight year that he'll finish no worse than second in his conference, a stretch that includes two years at Tulsa and three at Illinois.
WSJ: Death, Taxes, and Kansas Dominance
The end is near for Kansas University senior guard Tyshawn Taylor, who has just two home games left to play in his college career.
Both figure to be major happenings — Saturday’s 3 p.m., clash against Missouri in what is being billed as the last game in history between the rivals in Allen Fieldhouse, and an 8 p.m., March 3, Senior Night contest against Texas.
“I think it’s definitely going to be the biggest in my four years,” Taylor said, asked if Saturday’s rematch of a 74-71 loss to the Tigers on Feb. 4 in Columbia, Mo., could be the biggest game since Allen Fieldhouse opened.
“Look at all the people we have out there (hundreds of student campers). This is the most campers we’ve had in a minute, so I think it’s gonna be crazy. I’ve been a part of probably three or four like really crazy games, and I think this is probably going to top all three or four of those,” Taylor added.
…KU junior Jeff Withey realizes the roar before the opening tip could raise the roof.
“You can barely hear yourself think when it’s like that,” Withey said. “It’s real exciting playing in an atmosphere like that. I know it’s going to be really intimidating for the other team.”
…Plenty of former KU players will be in the house Saturday. They include: Eric Chenowith, Nick Collison, Matt Kleinmann, Raef LaFrentz, Christian Moody, Brady Morningstar, Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris, Kevin Pritchard, Tyrel Reed, Bud Stallworth, Billy Thomas and Stephen Vinson.
If just for a second, you can separate more than 100 years worth of antagonistic history from the contemporary importance of this single contest — as close to a winner-take-all affair as you can get in a regular-season college game — then you can begin to appreciate why Saturday afternoon's final installment of Tigers versus Jayhawks could be the perfect game to bring down the curtain on this wonderful show.
So forget about all the hatred. Forget about all the sniping. Forget about who's to blame for the ending of the MU-KU hostilities. Just consider how the last game of the rivalry couldn't be scripted any better than this. Missouri is 25-3 and ranked No. 3 in the country. Kansas is 24-4 and ranked No. 4 in the land. KU is 13-2 and in first place in the Big 12 Conference and Mizzou is 12-3 in second place with only three regular-season games to play.
So for instant gratification, we know that the winner on Saturday not only pretty much locks up the regular-season conference title, but also gains a huge edge towards wrapping up a No.1 seed in the NCAA Tournament's Midwest region in St. Louis, while the loser probably drops to a No.2 seed and gets shipped out to another region far from home.
And if we must bring it back to a history lesson for a moment, than consider how much fun Mizzou fans will have if they can roll out of the Big 12 not only with the best regular season in school history, but with two victories over KU and a conference title in their back pockets, too. Oh, but consider this too: Losing becomes worse than a disaster. It becomes an eternal haunting, because KU loyalists will have the ultimate dig in their back pockets.
"So let me get this straight: this was your greatest season ever, but you couldn't beat us for the title? Hmmmm."
St Louis PD
Earlier in the month, Robinson was stellar against the Tigers, especially in the second half and finished with 25 points and 13 rebounds. If Kansas had gotten anything from Withey that night the Jayhawks might have left Mizzou Arena with a victory.
“I wasn’t a factor,” Withey said.
Withey was assigned to guard MU guard Kim English, who is about 6 inches shorter, and English easily won the battle.
“I need to put pressure on English and hopefully make them play bigger,” Withey said.
The goose-egg from Withey that night brought a swift and positive response. In the next game, at Baylor, Withey scored a career-best 25 points. He followed that with an 18-point, 20-rebound performance against Oklahoma State and was one blocked shot short of a triple-double in a triumph at Kansas State.
Difficult as the Missouri defeat was for Kansas to swallow, it may have been a factor in launching Withey’s late-season surge.
“I learned I had to be aggressive,” Withey said.
Kansas won the board battle against the Tigers, but only by 29-26. Mizzou post man Ricardo Ratliffe and its frontliner off the bench, Steve Moore, combined for eight points and six rebounds. One of the differences in that game was the rebounding effort by Missouri guards. Marcus Denmon had nine.
But if Withey continues to play with confidence and Robinson can turn some frustration into positive energy, the Kansas big men figure to have a major impact Saturday.
His next step is probably medical school. He has been accepted to the KU School of Medicine, where he plans to pursue a career as a physical therapist. You get the feeling that he'll hit the ground running.
Former schoolboy basketball legend, former Jayhawk and published author - all before the age of 23.
Yes, he'll do just fine.
His book, "Reed all about it: Driven to be a Jayhawk," might be deemed the stuff of fairytales for any boy who has grown up in the Sunflower State. Basketball, as we know, is king around here. And with all due respect to Kansas State and Wichita State, there is no bigger dream than playing basketball for the Kansas Jayhawks.
It's one of basketball's heritage schools.
A blue blood.
Elite, to put it succinctly.
And for most kids, playing there is merely a pipe-dream.
Tyrel Reed book signing Sat. Feb 25 from 11am to 1pm KU Bookstore, Kansas Union, Level 2
Sunday marks the 40th anniversary of one of the most remarkable days in Kansas University basketball history: the day Isaac “Bud” Stallworth exploded for 50 points in a 93-80 victory over Missouri in Allen Fieldhouse.
The sweet-shooting 6-foot-5 senior from Hartselle, Ala., hit 19 of 38 shots and 12 of 13 free throws on Feb. 26, 1972, thrilling a packed Allen Fieldhouse crowd that included his mother, who was watching her son play in KU’s tradition-rich building for the first time.
Members of KU’s 1952 national title team, who were in town for a 20th-reunion celebration, also were on hand to see Stallworth’s one-for-the-ages outing.
“It was a great, great day — a remarkable performance,” former KU coach Ted Owens said of the second-highest scoring output from a Jayhawk. Stallworth’s ‘half-a-hundred’ points trailed only Wilt Chamberlain, who scored 52 points against Northwestern on Dec. 3, 1956. It remains the most points a Jayhawk has scored in a conference game.
“It’s not like we were playing a bad team. Missouri was good. Norm (Stewart, MU coach) tried everything. He put three different guys on Bud. Bud just had one of those nights,” Owens said.
Stallworth — he had the front-end of a one-on-one free throw make erased when teammate Wilson Barrow stepped into the lane — scored 50 without benefit of the three-point line.
“Think about this ... 13 of those baskets would have been three-pointers today,” Owens said. “That’s 63 points.”
A smile stuck on English’s face as he recalled his freshman visit to one of his five most enjoyable places to play a basketball game (not “favorite” because he’s never won there).
He walked out of the tunnel alongside four-year teammate Marcus Denmon and remembered one man “about 110 years old in a Kansas shirt.” English recounted the man’s message with the cracked voice of a real geezer:
“'You from Missourah?'" English imitated. "'You gonna burn just like you burnt down our town!'”
English’s face became serious, speaking of the matchup that could determine the throne-holder of the conference.
“It’s definitely something I want to end my career doing, by winning at Allen Fieldhouse,” he said. “(We seniors) are just enjoying this. If I go on to have a long NBA career, it would never be anything like college ... We’re just enjoying every step of it.”
Missouri’s final scheduled appearance at Allen Fieldhouse will be a singular event, one that warranted some campus preparedness.
On Thursday, Kansas sent an email reminder for fans planning to attend: Show up early, beware the phony tickets and, oh yeah, it’s gonna be hot in there.
“There will be a lot of energy in the building, I would think,” coach Bill Self said.
The Fieldhouse will be a complex stew of emotions on Saturday, enhanced by the heat of a conference race, the end of a historic series and the plain distaste between two rivals.
…“I don’t know if you can get too hyped for a game,” he said. “I think the more hyped we are, the better for us. We’ve got to play with a lot of energy, be excited, have fun and enjoy this atmosphere.”
Amid the excitement, though, the Jayhawks almost must keep their wits and avoid being sucked into a shootout with the Tigers, the Big 12’s highest-scoring team.
“It’s not so much the tendency that we have to match them, because that’s not who we are,” Self said. “The tendency is (to) let your emotions get the best of you, where you get too excited.”
Processing emotion comes down to maturity, Self said, and Saturday’s game could come down to that, too.
“I certainly anticipate a maturity level being the key intangible in whoever plays the best,” he said. “You’ve got to put blinders on. You can’t look left, and you can’t look right.”
After the game, I was walking down the hallway to the locker rooms and passed Kansas star Tyshawn Taylor using the wall to hold himself up. Anyone who believes these players don’t care is simply incorrect. They care deeply, and Taylor showed how much he had invested in that game. He was mentally and physically spent, and devastated about the loss.
That game was incredible in its solid play. Both teams shot better than 50 percent from the floor, a rarity in today’s bump and grind games. Missouri hit 10 three-point field goals and doubled up the Jayhawks in free throw attempts. One thing is certain, the Jayhawks cannot get a bagel from Jeff Withey and expect to win, even at home. In Columbia, Withey played 23 minutes and did not score, grabbing four rebounds.
After that first game, it was clear to me that both Kansas and Missouri are capable of reaching a Final Four, and fully capable of winning this thing with a good draw and some good fortune. Kansas is probably better suited for it, because of its inside strength and ability to get the ball inside and get to the free throw line. Missouri will cause problems because of its style differences and match-up problems it poses, but the Tigers are vulnerable to a lot of teams on bad shooting nights.
…And the winner is: Kansas. The Jayhawks have to feel like they let one get away at Missouri. I think the Jayhawks will pull out a win and claim the driver’s seat toward their eighth straight Big 12 title, 75-70.
Jay Bilas previews the Border War
The Missouri Sports Hall of Fame sits on the southeast side of Springfield. The splendid facility — the front patio contains a brick inlay shaped like Missouri and a walkway is lined with busts of inductees — was largely bestowed by John Q. Hammons, who, if not responsible for founding Springfield, should at least be credited for its rebuild.
As I walked in, halfway through the museum’s daily hours, the curator pardoned himself for having to turn on some exhibits, then returned and rang up my $5 admission as the day’s first visitor.
…One particular basketball video, however, was downright startling.
The clip was on a constant loop and the name of a KU guy, an instrumental KU guy, continually reverberated within the hall’s basketball display. Phog Allen’s crusade to make basketball an Olympic sport, as well as the 1952 team he assisted, were featured prominently on the rewind.
It was a reminder — not so subtle given the upcoming game, which we circled long ago, at the fieldhouse named in his honor — that Doc Allen, the father of basketball coaching, was very much tied to Missouri, his birthplace.
We all knew that, I think, yet it still was interesting to read his Hall of Fame plaque and learn Allen was enshrined in 1952 along with Casey Stengel, a year after Carl Hubbell became the first inductee in the Missouri shrine.
At that point in my visit, I was content remembering the last scheduled hoops clash between KU and Mizzou would be played in a place named for a Missouri native who gave his heart and soul to Kansas.
Then, one last exhibit in the Missouri Hall brought conference realignment full circle.
Posters celebrating five-year intervals of the Missouri Valley Conference were hung in a row, along with caricatures of all the inductees in the MVC Hall of Fame.
This is a league that weathered its share of turnover during 100-plus years. Yet the Valley does not hide any of its heritage. Allen and his early KU teams were heralded. The timeline the museum effectively captures even tells of the 1928 split creating the Big Six. Another departure, in 1941, involved Washburn.
Wounds that old heal over time, though the Missouri Valley’s recovery left it with the label as a mid-major conference.
Nonetheless, its name remains intact and a place exists to tell its story.
Professional Live Artist and former KU football player, John Bukaty, will paint live at the game and create a masterpiece of this this historical event court-side. He is donating the painting to the University.
The classic work, "The Final Battle of the Border War" is like nothing ever seen before on canvas!
Be one of the few to own this masterpiece of the one greatest basketball games in Allen Field-house history. Only 100 Large Limited Edition Giclees signed and numbered by John Bukaty. There are also a Limited Edition of 500 Medium Limited Edition Giclees (21"x32") available.
The men’s and women’s basketball teams are known to come around and deliver pizza to the hungry campers some nights. One night, junior forward Kevin Young pushed junior forward Thomas Robinson around in a laundry hamper as the players delivered pizza.
“It was good,” Kyle Haley, a junior from Hays, said about interacting with the players. “It’s different I guess, knowing they’re my age. It’s kind of unique that they’re as popular as they are.”
Haley got to split a Pizza Hut cheese pizza, delivered to him by junior guard Elijah Johnson, with another camper. But pizza time is not the only time the campers can catch a glimpse of the players.
“I’m looking at the gods of our school,” Tansey Schoonover, a freshman from Roswell, Ga, said as students gathered to watch the men’s basketball team walk to practice.
Students try to maintain sanity during hours of camping. Vipond’s group pitched in together to purchase an air mattress that stands over a foot tall.
“I try to attempt doing homework, but it doesn’t really work,” Vipond said. “So, basically just surf the Internet. Sometimes I sleep, if you have an early shift, but it’s really hard on this floor.”
Worse than waking up early is the fear that a camper might oversleep his or her shift. In her freshman year, Maggie Hirschi, a senior from St. Louis, Mo., woke up at 5:55 a.m. for her 6 a.m. camping shift at the Fieldhouse before a game against Texas. She rushed over from her Oliver Hall dorm room but arrived too late, and her group lost its number three camping spot.
The north concourse will continue to bustle with student activity until numbers are handed out three hours before tip-off on Saturday.
VOTE for the Kansas Jayhawks student section (Semis end today, top 8 advance to finals)
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Coaches vs Cancer: Help Coach Self raise $ for ACA with his 3-point Attack
The field of rookies joining him in the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge is not the bar for Morris. Most of the guys that provide a measuring stick for Morris are playing here on Sunday.
“I’m looking at the best big men,” Morris said of the standard he sets for himself. “I’m not worried about what the rookies are doing. I don’t look at myself as a rookie and don’t try to put myself in that category as a rookie. I just want to be a great person to be on this team and play as hard as possible.”
By rookie standards, Morris’ season has been a success to the point he was selected to be in the 20-man field for Friday’s game, when rookies and sophomores play together as a twist on the Rookie/Sophomore Challenges of past years. Former Suns stars Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley drafted teams and O’Neal tabbed Morris with his fifth pick.
Morris initially said there was nobody in particular he was excited about joining in the game.
“My brother (Marcus) is not playing so it doesn’t matter to me … Oh, or Jeremy Lin,” Morris said. “He’s entertaining so it should be exciting to play with him.”
KU will have to be opportunistic to try to score against the 6-foot-8 Griner and BU during today’s 6:30 p.m. home game against the No. 1-ranked Bears. Baylor remains as the only undefeated team left in men’s or women’s Div. I basketball.
The Jayhawks’ first crack at the Bears’ defense didn’t go so well.
KU made just 18 of 61 field goals (30 percent) and 13 of 49 twos (27 percent) in a 74-46 loss at BU on Jan. 28. In that game, Griner contributed five blocks in 31 minutes.
“You can’t go challenge her at the rim,” Henrickson said. “That’s wasted possessions.”
Henrickson said it was important for her team to take advantage of transition opportunities and also knock down open jumpers when they were available.
On Saturday, Texas Tech demonstrated another strategy that was effective against BU: shooting lots of three-pointers early instead of taking the ball into Griner.
The Red Raiders made six of eight first-half threes, taking a 35-30 halftime lead before eventually falling, 56-51, at Waco.
KU did show the ability to hit outside shots in the first match-up, making five of 12 threes (42 percent).
Big 12/College News
Big 12 Schedule & Results
ESPN Power Rankings 2/23: Kansas #3
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VIDEO: Pat Knight channels his inner Bobby
ESPN: Q&A with Big 12's Chuck Neinas on expansion
But it seems Louisville head coach Rick Pitino is not just upset about his team’s loss. According to Card Chronicle, Pitino went off in the postgame press conference about the officiating.
The officials “are really starting to get under my nerves,”Pitino said. “I don’t know who the hell they think they are.The level of arrogance, I just cannot believe it.”
And more, according to our RapidReporter Evan Hilbert: “I have a problem with the officials. They thought they were the three guys going into the Referee Hall of Fame the way they talked to me. I don’t know what they’re looking at sometimes, but they’re so positive, they should really go into the Referee Hall of Fame.”
Looking at the box score, both teams had the same number of fouls (16), and each team’s marquee big man – Yancy Gates for Cincinnati, Gorgui Dieng for Louisville – were saddled with four fouls. Throw in the fact that Louisville had to commit fouls late in the game to get Cincinnati to the free-throw line, and it doesn’t seem egregious in either direction.
With that said, there were some questionable out-of-bounds calls, as well as a couple of travel (and non-travel) calls that went against Louisville at key points.
And Pitino wasn’t done with his venom. He wasn’t fond of how the Cincinnati fans acted. He did say Cincinnati had the biggest homecourt advantage he’s seen this season, and would like to see the Louisville crowd bring the same energy on Sunday.
There’s one caveat, though, according to Pitino: “without some of the low-class behavior.”
After spending three consecutive days as the color analyst for ESPN’s broadcast of the Maui Invitational, Jay Bilas decided to give himself a break.
He wouldn’t immediately fly back home to North Carolina. Instead, he would give himself a chance to recuperate.
“The Maui tournament always ends the day before Thanksgiving,’’ Bilas said. “I stayed on Thanksgiving day so I could sleep in and spend the day in Maui before taking a red-eye back on Thanksgiving night. I turned on the TV in my hotel room and one of the officials that did the Maui final on Wednesday was doing a game in Orlando. I was still blurry-eyed in Maui and he’s in Orlando.
“Maybe the guy did a great job. I don’t know,’’ Bilas said. “But that’s asking a lot.’’
The top college basketball officials can take on a heavy workload. The officials work as independent contractors. They take assignments from different conferences. There is no limit as to the number of games an official can squeeze into his schedule.
In recent years, there has been a rising concern as some officials work as many as 90 games over the course of a season.
“This has been a topic that was discussed even back when I was coaching,’’ Jim Satalin, the former head coach at St. Bonaventure and Duquesne who spent nine years as the Atlantic 10 Conference’s supervisor of officials before retiring last year. “Are guys working too much? That was my complaint as a coach. There were times when I thought guys were tired and not physically or mentally ready to go the next day.’’
...Art Hyland, the Big East’s supervisor of officials, thinks officials need to work games to stay sharp, but there’s a limit. And Hyland admits that some officials push the limit.
“I only give the best officials on our staff two games a week, maybe three,’’ Hyland said. “I wouldn’t like it if they worked only two of three. They need more work to stay sharp. The best number would be four games each week. If you don’t work enough, you don’t stay sharp.’’
...According to the website StatSheet.com, which tracks officials schedules, Luckie had worked 79 games this season as of Feb. 22. That figure placed him third for most games called this season.
Brian Dorsey, who works mainly with the ACC but also with several other conferences, leads the way with 83 games called this season. In the first 22 days of February, Dorsey had worked 19 games.
“There’s a limit and most officials understand that,’’ Hyland said. “Do some of them probably push the limit? Yeah. If you’re doing six or seven a week, you’re going to start to wear out.’’
…Luckie worked nine games in nine consecutive days from Dec. 28 to Jan 5, including a New Year’s Day game between Syracuse and DePaul in Chicago the day after calling Louisville-Kentucky in Lexington, Ky. Roger Ayers called 11 games in 13 days between Jan. 28 and Feb. 9. Bryan Kersey refereed a whopping 17 games in 19 days, starting on Dec. 28 and ending Jan. 15.
“It does raise questions about your ability to do the best possible job at the end of that swing,’’ Bilas said. “If you’re doing five games in six nights, does anybody reasonably believe you’ll be at your best on the sixth night?’’
Despite failing to get off a good shot at the end of regulation, Miller School coach Scott Willard knew at the start of overtime that his visiting Mavericks had enough leadership to win in a hostile environment.
When senior guard Chase Cannon (10 points) made pivotal free throws in OT for the 93-89 victory over No. 1 seed Virginia Episcopal School in the VIC semifinals, coach Willard pointed to a tough schedule that had the team prepared for the challenge.
“We had our heads up and I believe we took control of overtime and didn’t let the last play affect us,” he said. “We’ve played one of the toughest schedules I would say on the East Coast. We’ve got guys who have been there before. As coaches we don’t panic, as players we don’t panic.”
Experienced leaders may have helped the Mavericks, but having talent did not hurt. Miller’s Andrew White (31 points, 9 rebounds) was effective driving the ball and knocking down jump shots against both the man and zone defenses from VES. With less than four minutes to go and trailing 72-68, White scored five straight points on two layups, including a made free-throw after drawing a foul. Cannon then hit a 3 on the right wing to cap an 8-0 scoring run.
“Last time we came in here and we lost,” White said. “I didn’t feel like I had the rebounds and the hustle plays I should have. So coming into this game, making my shots is always a focus, but I didn’t want to be outhustled tonight. Just doing whatever I had to do to win.”
Gorman wasted little time taking control against Northern Nevada’s Douglas High, scoring its initial basket five seconds into the game and leading 24-0 before the Tigers got on the scoreboard.
One year after the nationally ranked Gaels were upset in the state semifinals by Reno’s Bishop Manogue High, they quickly erased any aspirations of another upset.
Gorman’s Shabazz Muhammad scored 12 of his game-high 27 points in the first-quarter outburst and the Gaels led by as many as 45 points in the second half, easily earning a spot in Friday's championship game with a 73-38 victory.
Las Vegas Sun
Wichita North upsets Heights on Senior Night (video at link)
When Conner Frankamp touched the ball Thursday night, he nearly couldn't miss.
The North junior scored 38 points in an upset of Heights, dropping them 47-38. The loss marked the first back-to-back losses for the Falcons since the squad dropped two in a row at the end of the 2008 season in the Class 6A State Tournament.
"It's a great feeling!" Frankamp said following the game. "It's great to get them this year with all their players. I didn't play very well the first half but I tried to stay confident and get my team involved as much as I could."
The strong showing also translated on the defensive side of the ball, as the Redskins shut down Heights on offense and held the Falcons All-American player, Perry Ellis, to just 11 points.
The spotlight was instead reserved for Frankamp who scored 27 of his 38 points in the second half. The effort moved Frankamp into fourth place on the City League's all-time scoring list with 1,676 points. The junior passed South's Ricky Ross who compiled 1,667 points over his career.
"He is a special player and he came out firing tonight," North head coach Gary Squires said of Frankamp. "In the second half he really got it going and put on a show for us."
Playing their fourth game in seven days, it's been a long stretch for Heights (18-2), as they slipped from 18-0 to 18-2 to end the regular season.
"We played terrible basketball tonight and we got exposed," Heights head coach Joe Auer said. "North had a great game plan and we got what we deserve tonight."
"We are spent, we are just completely drained," Auer said of the toll taken on his team. "All teams are tired this time of year but the kids just look emotionally and physically spent."
Perry Ellis, who was held to his lowest point total of the season, struggled to get open looks all night long. The performance also came in front of Kansas head coach Bill Self, who was in attendance.
Kansas CW (video at link)
Glacier Peak vs. Rainier Beach, Friday night, 6 p.m. at Bellevue College
Pederson's game-winning shot Tuesday against Shorecrest propelled the Grizzlies to their third straight state tournament contest, which has the fans from the four-year old school in Snohomish excited. What they may not be excited about, however is the opponent: Rainier Beach, which stands between GP and a trip to the Tacoma Dome next week. After being ranked No. 1 for nearly the entire regular season, the five-time state-title winning Vikings (last in 2008) were upset by Seattle Prep in the district tournament. While Beach will focus on Pederson the Grizzlies will have their hands full with the Vikings' lightning-quick guard Anrio Adams, who averages 20.5 points per game.
Aaron Thomas scored 19 points and Jakarr Sampson added 11 points and 14 rebounds to help Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.) escape with a 60-56 win over Tilton (N.H.) on Feb. 20.
With the win, the Bobcats (28-0) completed the regular season sweep (3-0) of rival Tilton (25-6).
…Former NBA player and coach John Lucas II is the new director of player personnel for the National Basketball Players Association's Top 100 camp.
A three-time All-American at the University of Maryland, Lucas was the No. 1 pick of the 1976 NBA Draft and played in the league for 14 years. He's also been the head coach of three NBA teams and has experience executing summer camps for high school and middle school-aged players.
He will be responsible for securing players for the 19th annual camp, a key summer evaluation stop held June 13-17 at the University of Virginia.
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