St. ALBANS HOOPS 63 LANDON 55

Watching a sporting event from the back row of the bleachers give a certain distance and perspective about the ebbs and flows of a game. Tonight, because Mac Jacoby had a long standing engagement, a substitute scorekeeper was employed and consequently a different view was provided. This post will not include the normal narrative and details of the battle against the Bulldogs; because no such notes are available—marking down points, fouls, participation for both teams allows no time for such written observations. Instead, this chronicle from courtside will provide insights into the interplay between the coaches and the players in this tough, but hard fought 63-55 loss to the Bears’ biggest traditional rival.

With the 2012-13 roster, Landon will have to outwork the opposition and will have to go deep into the bench. Tonight against a taller and equally deep Bulldogs team, the home team (under the Bishop Walker Tournament seeding, Landon was the home team playing on StA’s court) kept even with the visitors, only down by 3 points at the end of the 1st quarter.  The scrappy Bears actually forged ahead for several minutes of the 2nd quarter, leading at one time 25-21. The StA coach exerted full court pressure during the last few minutes just before half time. The Bulldogs scored 9 points while the Landon team tallied 1.

HALFTIME StA 30 BEARS 26 

That late 2nd quarter trend was exacerbated in the next period; the StA press caused a number of Bear turnovers, which resulted in easy baskets for the “visitors”. The brothers Sniezek got a bunch of points during this assault. The Landon boys got frustrated and were using their bodies instead of the minds. The visitors scored 25 points while the home Bears put up only 6.

This is where the microscope of proximity gave great insights. Coach Luther took a long time out and reminded the boys, in far more inspired and better articulated words, that hard work and effort were important over the long term of the team’s development. He told them to eliminate the frustration that was impairing their performance and to focus on the lessons that they had learned in practice.

From a 23 point deficit, the home team scrapped for the ball, moved the ball better, took better shots, used their feet and hands to frustrate the Bulldogs. In the last few minutes the negative differential had narrowed to single digits. With better fortune on a few 3 point shots and with the visitors missing a few more foul shots, the result might have been reversed.

The FINAL SCORE was StA 63 Landon 55, but the Bears’ report card showed a valuable lesson was learned from a teacher/mentor/coach.

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Published in: on December 2, 2012 at 4:15 am  Leave a Comment  

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