Boston Shoot-Out – Saturday Recap

By Ephraim Herskovitz | Saturday, June 7th, 2008

Boston Shoot-Out – Saturday Recap

Games of the Day:

BABC South-76  New York Metro Hawks- 71

The first game of the day was also the day’s most hotly contested and intense. Emotions were running high as BABC South looked excellent in the first half, pounding the ball inside to their polished big man Mike Clifford. The Metro Hawks’ zone could not keep BABC South on the perimeter, and Clifford was able to catch the ball on the block and go to work. Clifford was undoubtedly the story of the game as he finished tough inside and controlled the glass, including several offensive rebound put-backs. Clifford is a great mix of finesse and power—he is physical on the glass and around the rim, but he is also a very good passer and has a soft touch. In the second half, the Metro Hawks mounted an impressive comeback, using their length and athleticism to get out in transition. Alex Francis from the Holderness School provided a terrific spark for the Metro Hawks. He showed off his strength and leaping ability while scoring 17 points. In the end, however, BABC South and Clifford were too much to handle on the interior. Clifford led all scorers with 21 points.

BABC- 88  Albany City Rocks- 70

BABC brought their A-game in the first half, jumping out to a 25 point halftime lead. Their relentless full-court pressure stifled the City Rocks, who were unable to find high percentage shots. City Rocks’ star guard Candon Rusin could not get anything going against the array of long, athletic defenders that BABC threw at him. Especially noteworthy was the on-ball defense of Phil Pressey, who pick-pocketed City Rocks guards on a number of occasions. Credit the City Rocks, however, as they stormed back in the second half, cutting the lead to 7 at one point. They decided to pack in their defense, forcing BABC to settle for perimeter jumpers, on which they failed to connect. Rusin began to find daylight as he went for 12 in the second half. He showed off his beautiful, high-arching jump shot and tight handle. While it was in no way his finest performance, he showed signs of why he is a premiere shooter in all of New England. After the City Rocks’ run, BABC regained control with their shear size and strength. They were simply too much for the City Rocks to handle down low and in transition. Jamal Coombs was extremely effective in his role as a consummate scorer as he netted 32 points. Alex Oriakhi, too showed that he is simply unstoppable when he wants to be. He finished with 14 points on a variety of thunderous dunks.

CBC- 98  MBR- 77

This game featured, hands down, the best individual performance of the day. In a losing effort, Keegan Hyland of MBR put on a show, hitting an assortment of 3’s, pull-ups, and floaters, which, in the end, added up to a remarkable 41 points. Only a rising junior, Hyland is a knock-down catch and shoot player who also has the ability to put the ball on the floor and create space for his lethal pull-up jumper. Still, Hyland’s best trait may be his knack for moving without the ball. He appears indefatigable and is an expert of reading and using screens. Unfortunately for MBR, Hyland’s incredible effort was not enough to overcome CBC’s advantage in athleticism. The game was a helter-skelter affair, and MBR ran out of gas in the second half. Steven Samuels did a tremendous job of distributing, as well as finding his own shot. His height makes him an intriguing prospect at the point guard position. Deshawn Hamlett also thrived in the transition game, scoring countless easy baskets to the tune of 27 points. In the end, CBC ran away with a 21 point victory, but that, in no way, detracts from Keegan Hyland’s memorable performance.

Some Other Players Who Shined:

Matt Labove and Ryan Spencer, BABC South- Labove is a 6’9 workhorse who prides himself on rebounding and hustle plays. His length also makes him an imposing shot-blocking presence. Spencer makes his living behind the arc as a deadly three-point shooter. The 6’4 2-guard also made some very nice cuts and finishes in his 16 point effort against the Metro Hawks.

Gerard Coleman, BABC- The scarily athletic wingman showed yet again why his stock is on the rise. He is so smooth off the dribble and can finish high above the rim, which he showed with one resounding dunk in the second half that sent the crowd into a frenzy. Coleman also has a very solid mid-range game, in which he utilizes a series of jab steps and pull-up jumpers.

Adrian Satchell, CBC- Satchell was a very difficult match-up for MBR with his height and spring. The 6’6 forward made a killing in transition, and also showed a solid shooting stroke. He dropped in 17 for the game.

Thomas Knight, MBR- This 6’8 southpaw has a great motor on the basketball court; he is never afraid to bang and make hustle plays. He also attacked the rim with authority on a number of occasions. Perhaps, the contest’s up and down style did not suit Knight’s game as it did CBC big men’s, but nonetheless, he made his presence felt.