Monday, February 2, 2009

Potholes on Memory Lane

Major thanks to Rick "Stats" Klapthor, Gannon's longtime official scorekeeper (that makes him Gannon's all-time leading scorer, doesn't it?), for lending me the videotape of the Cablevision broadcast of Gannon at Edinboro, circa 1987. I wrote about that game last week as one of the greatest Knight/Scot clashes. [See "The night Tom Taylor 'did an Edinboro'", Jan. 27]

The first thing I did when I got the tape was fast forward to the end of regulation to see the classic conclusion. I hadn't watched these possessions in 22 years, but they looked very familiar because I have replayed them in my mind so many times. But some details are lost over the years.

First, I could have sworn that Taylor raised his left index finger -- the non-verbal way to say "We're #1" -- after grabbing the rebound with 8 seconds left. But the tape shows he only made a fist with his left hand. For over two decades the replay in my mind was incorrect.

Another detail erroneously burned into my brain was that Taylor took several steps with the ball raised over his head. Actually he held the ball above his head for maybe only two seconds and two steps. However, the gesture was enough of a celebration to break his concentration and cause him to miss the front end of his 1-and-1 free throws.

At some point I'll figure out how to post some of that game's video online and will share that with you. You have to see ...
  • ... how short the shorts were. Taylor's shirt was untucked and you could barely see his shorts underneath.
  • ... energetic broadcasters Jim Gandolfo, the former Gannon P.A. announcer, and Todd Jay, a longtime administrator at Edinboro (and super nice guy). After Taylor's rebound, Jay warns vociferously, "The game is not over! It is not over!"
  • ... the intensity of the game. The fans stand up on nearly every possession, frequently blocking the game action. Kudos to the Cablevision director for switching in midshot to capture Shannonhouse's tip-in at the buzzer.

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