Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Points Aplenty

You might be expecting me to write at length about the officials from Gannon's 96-86 victory over West Chester Wednesday. The refs certainly caught the ire of the Golden Knight faithful for calling 52 fouls on the night, none of them charges against the Rams. I never saw a home crowd watch their team win by 10 and still end the game booing the zebras off the floor. I think I even saw official scorer Rick "Stats" Klapthor put on his jacket (covering up his black-and-white striped shirt) during the final seconds of the game, just for his own safety. I'm going to take the high road and resist saying anything derogatory about the crew of Don Gambridge, Paul Skirtich, and Mark Tortorella. I think they just had a different perspective than the rest of us. I won't perpetuate an argument than any one of them is the worst referee ever.

Let's talk basketball. We learned vs. West Chester that the Knights now possess a multdimensional offense. First, they obliterated West Chester's zone defense with a flurry of first-half threes by Kareem Brown and Kelvin Agee. The Rams had no desire to play man-to-man (the 96 points will attest to that) but were forced to when Brown scored 11 points in span of just 1:45. Nine of his tallies came from behind the arc. Meanwhile, on the other wing, Agee torched West Chester with 33 points of his own. I agree with Jim LeCorchick's assessment after the game that what made Agee's scoring figure even more impressive was that he didn't force the issue. Nearly every one of his 18 field goal attempts (he made 12) were layups or jumpers after his feet were set. If Agee wasn't at the top of every Gannon opponent's scouting report before, he's there now.

Another new dimension we saw from Gannon was the ability of supersub Anthony Clagett to penetrate and score (15 points, 9-of-12 free throws in 26 solid minutes). Part of the struggles for last year's Gannon team was an offense that had to create everything off the pass or in transition. Steve Piotrowicz is more of a ball-control PG than a break-you-down-off-the-dribble guy. All night long Clagett squared up on his man and blew by him at will. You know how Gannon gets into offensive ruts on occasion? Well now John Reilly can insert Clagett and in the context of the offense have him set up teammates or score off the dribble. When I played with Darryl Freeman (1989-91) at Gannon, we'd use him that way frequently to salvage possessions. We'd work the ball and get nothing for half a minute, then give it to Darryl who could always get by his man and either finish or draw a defender.

All that said, the Knights have an opportunity this weekend to add another even more important dimension to their repertoire -- the ability to win away from the Audi. Road games at Cheyney (8-2) and Shippensburg (4-6) could be turning points for the Knights as they step closer to PSAC West play.

9 comments:

  1. Wow ... Looks like Agee is lighting it up. If he had a game like this on Thursday, No way would Chris Giles have been the MVP of the Porreco Cup.

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  2. The lack of Defensive stops tonight has me concerned...a 16 point lead @ 5 to go - you should not have thefeeling I had in the last min or 2...

    Trust me I know how long it takes for a team to buy into playing Rielly "D"...
    I know how long it takes for them to start to 'get it'...

    86 points, no matter how you may try to couch it just isn't getting it done - THAT DOG WON'T HUNT - not at this point in the season

    As good as the games against Wayne and Millersville may have been - I don't think they compensate for tonight - 69 Points per game average given up is not going to cut it...

    BUT HEY!
    Don't ask for the answer... I only observe

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  3. Yes, but at least Agee scored his points when it actually mattered!

    Looking at the stats, first thing that popped out to me that I really liked was NOT Agee's stats. It was Brown's. I know I've been backing him from game one, but he finally had a "good game". 5-11 (all 3 attempts) for 17 points. My thing with him has been if he can hit 3-4 3's a game (which I know won't happen consistently) it would really open up things for everyone else. I'm not saying he's the reason Agee scored 33, but I don't doubt that after he hit a few they started guarding him tougher and Agee got some better looks.

    I wasn't at the game so I don't have anything to back that with besides just assumptions alone. How about Claggett though? 15 points??!! No offense, but I didn't think he'd get much more than that for the season. His jumper never looked even "good" and he never really drove that much (he looked like an old school actual point guard... strictly playmaker). But I was happily shocked to see that line.

    Now for a bit of criticism about a "down" issue... why did I have to go to West Chester's website to get the box score for Gannon's home game?? Did someone find Super Dan's kryptonite? (just kidding!!)

    Go Knights!

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  4. Geez Louise! Can't this team just enjoy a victory without someone throwing stones at them? What concerns me is those of you that either don't go to the game and judge their performance by analyzing the stats afterwards or can't understand what's happening when you ARE watching.

    Were you at the game? WC was down big early, and the game turned into a foul-a-thon in the last 10 minutes as they extended the game (Many times with tactics normally reserved for the football field or hockey rink, even down 8 with less than 10 seconds left in the game), giving themselves far more offensive opportunities that they would normally have had and shooting the ball less than 10 seconds into the shot clock most times down. The game took over 2 hours and 10 minutes to play, obviously not a typical game. GU might have given up 86, but they scored 96. That alone should tell you that this wasn't a typical GU game.

    Can't you be happy that GU adjusted and were able to score 96 themselves? Can't you be happy that they're 6-2 now, coming off 4 straight wins? With Agee putting up 33 points? How about the point guards throwing in 25 between them? With Furno starting to come alive? With Brannen contesting shots down low without fouling as much as last year?

    In the words of Lucy Van Patten, "Tell your statistics to shut up". They adapted, they won. They got it done somehow, that's all that matters. A win is a win. Sorry it didn't fit your statistical parameters for an acceptable performance. I'll take it.

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  5. g74 - if there was an MOP award on this site, you just won it "Most Outstanding Post".

    Totally agreed and love it!

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  6. Haven't missed a home game M or W in the last 3yrs and I 've got to say the "zebras" were as consitant as a cork in the ocean. Too many bogus and non-calls. In all my years the worst I've seen is (I don't know his name, but he was)the tallest ref out there. He has black hair and he is CONSISTANT-ly bad.

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  7. I wasn't able to make the game last night, but I kind of had a feeling it was a "stripes game" due to the length of the game and also due to all the griping people did. I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks we always get the bottom of the PSAC barrel when it comes to referees.

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  8. The officials were so badly inconsistent that they don't deserve to be mentioned as officials. They let the game get completely out of control by allowing tactics rarely see in a basketball game outside your typical big-city playground court, and then some.

    When a team is OBVIOUSLY going out of their way to foul on EVERY play you have to call EVERY foul and they will stop, allowing the end of the football game and the resumption of the basketball game. That never happened last night, and that's what you end up with.

    I have seen the tall ref before and he has been awful every time. I was told he is from the Eastern part of PA. Perhaps he should stay there and do some grade school games until he learns how to ref. The other 2 were unfamilar to me but just as inconsistent.

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  9. Sounds like another solid (if not excruciatingly looooong) performance by the Knights. Good to see the ball movement resulting in so many assists (22 on 27 fgs) and from 7 different players. That seems to be the answer to the (perceived)lack of assists from the point equalling poor performance. The offensive sets involve quick passing from all areas, leading to less overall assists from the point but also leading to efficient offense.

    Jim, I caught your halftime interview Monday. Your Dukiet reference about "you can play good defense anywhere" is still one of the great coaching tenets I've ever heard. Add in the Chappy "they scout your first option" concerning teams slumping offensively, and it's obvious that, despite the splinters, your time under their tutelage has served you well.

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